From Pioneer Vanguard to Pioneer Fort

Salt Lake West Side Stories: Post Fiveby Brad Westwood Above Illustration: “Fort on the Great Salt Lake;” researched and rendered by Kirk Henrichsen, circa 1995; used with permission of the artist. In 1847, leaders of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints decided to organize an exodus to the West in search of a new homeland where they believed …

African Americans and Salt Lake’s West Side: Part One

Salt Lake West Side Stores: Post Twenty-FourBy Brad Westwood and Cassandra Clark The above photograph was described by the photographer as “Wright’s Card Club, Blacks, at 313 E. 8th S. [Salt Lake City, Utah], April 27, 1945; Ray King, photographer; Salt Lake Tribune Negative Collection; Courtesy of the Utah State Historical Society. The west side was the beginning place for …

Irish, Cornish, Welsh and Jewish immigrants and Salt Lake City’s West Side

Salt Lake West Side Stories: Post Twenty-TwoBy Brad Westwood Many of the west side’s earliest immigrants found employment in mining, transportation and smelter industries. Others brought and sold goods essential to frontier life. This segment speaks to the Cornish, Irish and Jewish American Communities who lived and worshiped on the west side. Many immigrants left their homelands because of famine …

Utah’s Expanding Railroads and Salt Lake’s West Side

Salt Lake West Side Stories: Post Nineby Brad Westwood The completion of the world’s first transcontinental railroad in 1869 dramatically affected the social, political, economic, and cultural life of Salt Lake City, the Territory of Utah and the American West. Transportation was one aspect that contributed to changes in the West. The railroad cut travel time from the Pacific to …

The Legacy of Salt Lake City’s Pioneer Fort

Salt Lake West Side Stores: Post Sevenby Brad Westwood Above photo caption: Utah’s Hall of Relics, built as a small Parthenon replica. Note above the pediment is a smaller relica of Ralph Ramsey’s flying eagle sculpture (the original atop Brigham Young’s Eagle Gate). The hall, constructed of plaster and jute fiber over a wooden frame, was built for the 1897 …

Pre-European Settlement, Crossroads, and the Idea of Home

Salt Lake West Side Stories: Post Fourby Brad Westwood American Indians lived in what is now Salt Lake’s west side. After Europeans began to colonize North, South, and Central America, the Great Basin became a site where many different people and nationalities claimed ownership. In this post, we will consider how the Native Americans of the Salt Lake Valley interacted …

The Old Pioneer Fort’s First and Second Years

Salt Lake West Side Stories: Post Sixby Brad Westwood Above photo caption: Kirk Henrichsen’s birds’ eye sketch of the Fort on the Great Salt Lake, circa 1849, extending from 300 to 400 West and 250 South to 600 South. Henrichsen’s drawing including log and adobe cabins, gateways, hundreds of wagons used for cooking and sleeping (inside, under and around), the …

Salt Lake City loses its “Dirtiest City” status, the West Side, Public Health, and the City’s Only Surviving Pioneer Square

Salt Lake West Side Stories: Post Fourteenby Brad Westwood It is no surprise that in terms of public health, sanitary reform, and civic improvements, local and state leaders neglected Salt Lake’s ethnically diverse and industrial west side. The west side sits along the floodplain of the Jordan River and the southern end of City Creek’s alluvial deposit. At the same …

Chinese Americans on Plum Alley and on the West Side

Salt Lake West Side Stories: Post Twenty-ThreeBy Brad Westwood Chinese immigrants were the largest group of laborers working on the Central Pacific Railroad (CPR). Commencing in Sacramento and ending at Promontory Summit, Utah, Chinese immigrants made the completion of America’s Transcontinental Railroad possible. Initially, the contractors for the Central Pacific Railway cautiously hired Chinese laborers to supplement white most Irish …

Twentieth-Century Changes to Salt Lake City’s Original West Side.

Salt Lake West Side Stories: Post Thirty-Oneby Brad Westwood Top photograph: The Crossroads Cafe, Hotel Utah Motor Lodge, 45 No. West Temple, circa 1962. Courtesy of the University of Utah, Special Collections. Over the years, the Pioneer Park neighborhood has undergone significant changes as people and industries moved in and out of the area. In the twentieth century the changes …

Latino/as and the West Side: Part Two

Salt Lake West Side Stories: Post Twenty-NineBy Brad Westwood and Cassandra Clark Latino/as who lived in twentieth-century Utah faced discrimination and unstable employment options that negatively affected their lives. However, their dedication to community-building and hard work helped them to establish themselves in Salt Lake’s west side and far beyond. The 100% American nativist sentiments (a belief in protecting established …

Brokers of Human Capital

Salt Lake Westside Stories: Post Nineteenby Brad Westwood Many early American immigrants first heard about Utah and the American West from steamship and labor agents whose work was similar to modern-day employment recruiters. The steamship and labor agents attracted laborers by offering to pay for their transportation costs. In return, laborers signed a contract that required that they pay a …