Henry Larkin Southworth’s large two-story Octagon House and Store were built on this site in the early 1850’s. John Henry Smith, young son of Apostle George A. Smith, hauled the oversized adobe brick to build the two-feet-thick walls. Artisans, Jeremiah Robey and Edwin Bunnell, used wooden pegs and dovetailed joined to construct floors, stairs, and woodwork. The unique shaped building was crowned with a windowed cupola. The residential portion served as both a home and a way station on Utah’s stage line. The basement housed a bakery, and a large garden supplied travelers with fresh produce served at the specially built octagon-shaped dining room table. Workmen constructed a corral and stable for the horses behind the “Octagon”.
H.L. Southworth received an appointment as Post Master in 1861. The “Octagon” served as Provo’s Post Office until 1863 and again during 1875.
Bachman leased the Octagon to Truman Swarthout. Swarthout ran the “Octagon” as a hotel in 1871-72. Bachman then leased the building to Provo’s first Masonic Lodge: “The Story Lodge”.
In 1876 Lucinda Kempton Southworth invested in a profitable mine in Nevada; mining profits enabled her to buy back the “Octagon” from Bachman. She reentered the mercantile business in 1878. In 1881, Southworth’s advertised in Provo‘s “Territorial Enquirer” saying the “Octagon” had boarding rooms available.
The Southworth’s found yet another use for the building; they relocated their cigar-making factory from their family-owned enterprise, Spanish Fork’s “Castilla Springs Resort” to the “Octagon”.
Henry Larkin Southworth died July 5th, 1901; his funeral was help in the 3rd Ward LDS Building, located directly north of the “Octagon”. In 1926, Southworth’s three surviving heirs deemed the structure unsuitable for modern standards and it was torn down.
This is Marker #568 of the DUP Markers.