Salt Lake City.
By Lynn Arave
PLODDING through hundreds of pages of history books can be a tedious and slow process at best. Especially if you're not a fast reader, you likely won't read many historical books/publications. Also, in this fast-moving world, people tend to want facts and trivia now — without having to expend much effort or time.
In line with brevity and summarizing, here's a look at some unusual highlights of Salt Lake County history, listed in an easy and quick-read format:
• The first winter in Utah, 1847, was spent on the site of today's Pioneer Park by about 1,700 residents in a fort and huts. A school with six pupils also operated that winter.
• In 1854 in Salt Lake, 120 deaths were reported. Forty-five of those were children under age 5.
• Slavery was legal in the Utah Territory from 1852 and lasting about 10 years. In 1850, there were 24 free blacks and 26 slaves in Salt Lake.
• The first speeding law in Salt Lake came in 1848 and stated that no speed would exceed a slow trot, or face a fine.
• American Indians in the Salt Lake Valley were mostly friendly. However, one settler's journal talks about how a young Elizabeth Morgan was stolen by whooping and yelling young bucks and taken to the Indians' camp. When a group of men went after her, they found her safe. The Indians were playing a prank, but the settlers weren't taking it lightly.• The Fourth of July celebration in 1881 included a first to Black Rock beach for picnics, swimming and singing. The event didn't end at dark, as the wagons and carriages remained there overnight and partygoers slept on the Great Salt Lake's beaches.