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Utah State History Digital Collections

We have over 275,000 terrific digital photographs, manuscripts, and some artifacts. In addition to these items, our Research Center has thousands of additional photographs, manuscripts, books, and pamphlets that are available to researchers. See our collections page for a better idea of what we have. If you want more information or have questions, email or call 801-245-7227. Click here to order photos.

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FEATURED! Salt Lake Tribune Negative Collection

This collection contains over 171,000 images from the 1930s to the 1960s. The collection is unique in origin as it includes images taken by dozens of different photographers sent out by the newspaper to get the perfect shot, something newsworthy. This results in many “live action” images taken of the everyday activities of life with no posing such as one sees with photograph studios.

Afton Watkins Gardner Collection

history_gardner This collection contains images from Charles Goodman, a photographer in Bluff, Utah from the 1890s to 1912. Southern Utah and the surrounding areas are documented in Goodman’s work showing an array of activity including mining ventures, landscapes, city streets, and residences. A few scattered images from fellow photographer Charles B. Lang, Sr. are included, but the majority of the images are attributed to Charles Goodman.

Al Morton Photograph and Film Collection

The Al Morton Photograph and Film Collection documents scenic Utah.Morton photographed and filmed many of Utah’s natural beauties, including rivers, landscapes, and the National Parks in Utah, helping the tourist industry. He also documented recreational activities, such as river trips. His films were shown in schools and as tourist promotions.

C. R. Savage Portrait Collection

History_Savage_2The C. R. Savage Portrait Collection contains almost 15,000 images of men, women, and children who went to the Savage studio in Salt Lake for a portrait sitting during the 1930s.


Carbon County Cookbook

History_Cookbook The Carbon County Cookbook contains recipes from citizens of several cities in Carbon County, such as Helper, Kenilworth, Sunnyside, Hiawatha, Cameron, and Castle Gate, during the 1920s.


Cartoons and Caricatures of Men in Utah

History_Cartoons This collection contains artwork in the form of cartoons and caricatures of men in Utah around the turn of the twentieth century. The sketches were part of a 1906 book entitled Just for Fun: Cartoons and Caricatures of Men in Utah.


Charles Raymond Varley Slide Collection, 1868-1986


An ode to architecture, this collection contains images of commercial, religious, and residential buildings of Salt Lake City. How architecture was used for advertising is also an interesting aspect of this collection. “Then and now” images compare the 1886 Salt Lake streets to the streets of 1986. Researchers will note the continued change to downtown Salt Lake when comparing the 1986 images to present day.

Civilian Conservation Corps in Utah

The Civilian Conservation Corps in Utah collection contains images from various CCC camps throughout Utah, in both black and white and color, taken and collected by members of the CCC. The collection also contains copies of newsletters published by individual camps.


Classified Photograph Collection

Containing over 30,000 images, the Classified Photograph Collection is an artificially created collection by Utah Division of State History over a forty year period. Created as a browsing collection, it is organized by subject, containing images regarding people, architecture, cities and towns, events, and subjects of popular interest regarding Utah history.

Clifford Bray Photographs

History_BrayClifford Bray worked for the Shipler Commercial Photographer Studio and then independently. This collection contains images of Salt Lake City architecture and people in the 1930s, as well as unique images of accident scenes and business contracts for documentary purposes.


Denver & Rio Grande Western Railway Payroll Ledgers, 1889-1919

The Denver & Rio Grande payroll ledgers contain the employment records for workers between 1889-1919. The ledgers document the pay of employees from different departments, such as the Agent’s Office, the Baggage Department, and the Transfer Gang.


Ellis Reynolds Shipp Papers

History_Shipp This collection contains the papers of Dr. Ellis Reynolds Shipp, one of Utah’s first female physicians. It includes her writings in the form of correspondence to family and friends, diary entries, autobiographical works and some poetry and general notes. Subjects covered, include early medical practice, family history, polygamy, and life in nineteenth and early twentieth century Utah.

The Fredrick and Nellie Hill Salt Lake Photograph Collection

This collection includes images taken by Fredrick and Nellie Hill on their honeymoon in 1892. After their marriage in Massachusetts, the pair traveled by train throughout the west, photographing their experiences. These images document their time in Utah and include unique views of the Salt Lake valley from the scaffolding of the LDS Salt Lake Temple.

General Refractories Company Photograph Collection

History_GenRefrac This collection documents the expansion to the General Refractories Company in Lehi, Utah in 1955-1956, highlighting the brick trade as part of Utah’s clay industry.



 George M. Ottinger Photograph Collection

Born in Pennsylvania in 1833, George M. Ottinger came to Utah in 1861. Upon arriving,  Ottinger  painted scenery for a Salt Lake theater and then joined photographer C.R. Savage, hand-tinting photographs. Though he worked in a variety of careers—from sailor, to fire chief and professor—Ottinger always returned to art and painting. The photographs in this collection reflect Ottinger’s role as an artist and life in Utah from the late-nineteenth to the early twentieth centuries.

John Peter Simonson Photograph Collection

Documenting Green River, Utah, this collection contains images taken by author, pharmacist, and railroad man John Peter Simonson. Simonson and his wife, Eugenie, moved to Utah in 1908 after purchasing the Broadway Drug Store. They operated the store until 1955 and lived in Green River until 1961.

Juanita Brooks Photograph Collection

The Juanita Brooks Photograph Collection contains images documenting Brooks’s professional writing career from 1934-1971. The collection also provides a glimpse into her personal life with many images of her family, activities, and general life in southern Utah.

The Kent Day Family Collection, 1917-1919

The Kent Day Family Collection contains photographs and letters collected by different day family members, predominantly Ada Elizabeth Day. This collection documents the beginning of World War I from the perspective of different soldiers stationed in various places. The collection also includes documentation of the death of David Day who died of Spanish Influenza.

KUED Topaz Residents Collection

The KUED Topaz Residents Collection contains images used for the KUED 1987 documentary on the Topaz Internment Camp in Delta, Utah during World War II. The collection documents the journey of many Japanese Americans leaving behind home, jobs, and life to enter the Topaz Internment Camp.

Larson Studio Negative Collection

The Larson Studio Negative Collection was created by Thomas Christian Larson and his son O. Blaine Larson. Both operated the Larson Studio from 1916-1968 in Provo, Utah. The collection contains portraits of many Utah County citizens as well as some Utah landscape and industry scenes and images of Provo.

Movies Made in Utah

History_Movies Hollywood loved Utah for its old west feel. The Movies Made in Utah collection contains images from various productions filmed in Utah, as well as a photo album of a Utah film production studio.


Peoples of Utah

The Peoples of Utah collection contains images used in Helen Papanikolas’s 1976 Peoples of Utah publication, documenting the history of the different ethnic groups throughout Utah. Some of the groups included are African Americans, Chinese, Greeks, and Japanese.

Philo T. Farnsworth Television Tubes Collection

The Philo T. Farnsworth Television Tubes Collection contains different examples of the Farnsworth television tubes that are part of Utah State History’s artifacts collection.



Ray King Collection

This collection contains images from Utah photographer Ray King. King worked for the Salt Lake Tribune for many years in the mid-twentieth century. These images document his work in Utah but also his personal life as he photographed trips throughout the United States.


Rural Utah Collection

The majority of Utah’s population is found on the Wasatch Front, but Utah’s history knows no boundaries. This currated collection features images from rural communities of Utah — including Eureka, Milford, Newton, Ophir, and Stockton. Photographs in this collection highlight the prominent livelihoods that sustained rural Utah cities and towns, while showing that all communities (both rural and urban) have a lot of things in common.

Salt Lake City Engineers Collection

The Salt Lake City Engineers Collection contains negatives from 1902-1931 that document the construction of various structures in Salt Lake City and the surrounding area. Included are images of roads, street paving, fire stations, bridges, rivers, and canyons.

Schools of the Salt Lake Valley

The Schools of the Salt Lake Valley collection has images of various school structures throughout the Salt Lake Valley, many of which have since been demolished. Students of the various schools are often included in the images.

Shipler Commercial Photographers

Shipler Commercial Photographers took thousands of images of Salt Lake City and surrounding areas. This collection contains images from glass plates (1900s-1920s) and acetate negatives (1940s-1950s), with the majority of the images having an exact date and detailed description.

Taylor Woolley Photograph Collection

The Taylor Woolley Photograph Collection documents Utah architect Taylor Woolley’s time working under Frank Lloyd Wright during the 1911 construction of Wright’s Taliesin I in Wisconsin. The collection also contains some images of Woolley’s architectural work in Utah.

Theater Programs Collection

History_Theater This collection contains programs for dramatic and musical performances at different theatrical establishments in Utah from 1866-1995. Most are from the Salt Lake Theatre, built in 1861 and considered one of the finest theaters west of the Mississippi.

Topaz – Our Daily Diary

History_Topaz Our Daily Diary is a diary kept by the High Third Grade children at the Topaz War Relocation Center during World War II. Students and their teacher document their every day experiences during the time of internment of Japanese-Americans.


Utah 2002 Olympic Legacy Collection

The Olympic Legacy Collection contains images of various events during the 2002 Salt Lake Olympics. Also included are images of some artifacts in the Utah State History collection, such as the famous tradable pins.

Utah Governor’s Olympic Collection

The Utah Governor’s Olympic Collection contains images taken by the Governor’s Office during the 2002 Salt Lake Olympics. The images document the Governor’s activities during the Olympics as well as different Olympic events, such as the Opening Ceremonies and medal ceremony concerts.

Utah State Legislators Photographs

History_LegPorMen and women have been serving Utah citizens in the Utah State Legislature since before Utah was officially a state. This collection has images of legislators serving from various Utah counties from 1895-1963.


Utah Power and Light Collection

History_UPL The Utah Power and Light Collection has images of various schools, businesses, homes, hospitals, service stations, and street scenes mostly in the Salt Lake Valley. Some of the images highlight the lighting of some of the structures.

We Remember, We Celebrate, We Believe: Latinos in Utah Exhibit Collection

This digital exhibit showcases the photographic exhibit of Latino history in Utah by Armando Solorzano, professor of Ethnic Studies at the University of Utah. Topics include Aztec history in Utah, Latino settlements in southeastern Utah, Latino miners, railroad workers, migrant workers, Latino religious practices and political influences.



William Edward Hook Glass Negative Collection

The William Edward Hook Collection contains images from glass plate negatives. Hook was a photographer in Colorado during the 1890s gold rush. The collection documents life in the west and the railroad in Utah.

 Work Progress Administration Biographical Sketches

History_WPA Short biographies generated by the WPA from and about Utah’s remaining pioneers and historical figures. The collection consists of Personal Pioneer History questionnaires, autobiographical and biographical sketches, autobiography and diary transcriptions.


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