Utah Stories from the Beehive Archive

Browse Items (242 total)

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The nationwide depression of the 1890s produced unprecedented levels of unemployment.  One unfortunate casualty of the resulting stress and anxiety was Mary Cook, a young mother from Utah County. In 1894, a young mother from Pleasant Grove named…

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A lot of Americans still dream of the American West as a place of freedom and opportunity. But for workers at the turn of the twentieth century, it was never quite that simple.As author Mark Twain brings Huckleberry Finn’s story to a close, we read…

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The Woman’s Exponent magazine served an unusual role in advocating for Utah’s working women during the late nineteenth century. One of the greatest advocates for Utah’s working women was the Woman’s Exponent magazine, started in Salt Lake…

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Learn about Utah’s convict labor system and how prisoners actually formed the backbone of some of our early public works projects – especially road construction.The term "convict labor" usually conjures up images of men wearing black and white…

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In 1914, the state of Utah put labor activist Joe Hill on trial for murder in a case that remains controversial to this day. Learn about Elizabeth Gurley Flynn, the woman who fought hard for Hill’s pardon.When the state of Utah sentenced labor…

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Tourists and Utahns alike enjoy the Beehive State for its many opportunities for outdoor recreation.  Learn how much of that recreation originated in the way people worked.The state of Utah is widely known for its outdoor recreation.  Skiers…

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Rafael Lopez came to Utah to help break a strike up in Bingham Canyon in 1912. A year later, he was a fugitive ­– and a folk hero.When Greek miners went out on strike in 1912, the Utah Copper Company turned to Mexican labor to keep production…

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We no longer work as close to the land as Utah’s indigenous people once did. But that doesn’t mean we don’t work for the same reasons. Learn how Timpanogos Utes made a living and how we might relate.We sometimes forget how much work was – and…

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Irrigation was essential to early Mormons’ ability to survive in Utah. Learn how they labored physically, intellectually, and communally to make the desert bloom.Looking back at the Mormons of the late nineteenth century, one historian joked that,…

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American industrialism at the turn of the 20th century brought Utah women out of their homes and into the workplace. There they faced inequality and wage disparity.The turn of the twentieth century saw dramatic changes that created new opportunities…

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Utahns have looked to the mountains for minerals, lumber, water, and even grazing lands. But how were our mountains re-imagined into the skiing playgrounds we know today?Alpine skiers claim that Utah has the best snow on Earth. But before people…

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“Extra! Extra! Read All About It!” was a common cry from boys and girls peddling newspapers on city corners all across America. Learn about the newsboys who filled the streets of Salt Lake City.Child labor played a big role in Utah’s turn of…

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Rightly or wrongly, others often see our work as defining who we are, and prize some occupations over others. Meet George Goddard, who spent three years traveling Utah and collecting waste.Today, most Americans make recycling a regular part of their…

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When she came to Utah to support striking coal miners, the Deseret News described her as a “vulgar, heartless, and vicious creature.” Learn about the “Miner’s Angel,” labor organizer “Mother” Jones.In April 1904, Utah received a visit…

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“Big Bill” Haywood was a legendary Utah labor leader, whose ashes were buried in the Kremlin Wall.In February 1869, William D. Haywood was born in Salt Lake City into a working class family.  He would grow up to become “Big Bill” Haywood,…

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Learn about the Provo Woolen Mills, the first large factory built in Utah.Prior to the coming of the transcontinental railroad in 1869, Utah's economy revolved mainly around agriculture, barter, and small-scale manufacturing. With the railroad,…

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Learn about a variety of jobs done by Utahns at the turn of the twentieth century, and think about how jobs have changed - or not - over the last 100 years.According to the United States Census, there were 73,840 men and 10,764 women employed in Utah…

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One of the most important artists of the 20th Century took a convoluted journey to create one of the most significant works of land art in the world. And it happened right here in Utah.     Robert Smithson was one of the pioneers of the land art…

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Verla Gean Miller FarmanFarmaian – beloved teacher to many Utah school children – made one decision to travel that set her on a fantastic journey that changed her life.   In 1945, Verla Gean Miller made a decision to travel to the eastern…

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The 1940 assassination in Mexico City of Russian revolutionary Leon Trotsky has an odd Utah connection in Joseph Hansen, whose journey took him from a childhood in Richfield, Utah, to the deathbed of one of the most important leaders of the 20th…
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