The town of Leamington on the northern border of Millard County is situated in a small but fertile valley of the winding Sevier River. It is surrounded on the north, east, and south by the Wasatch range.
In 1871, a number of people from Oak City visited the present site of Leamington. Unlike other Utah settlements, these people were not sent to Leamington by Church authorities. However, Bishop Platt Lyman of Oak City did send John Lovell to Leamington to act as the presiding elder. The first permanent settlers in Leamington built their home in 1873.
Leamington was named after a town in England by Frank Young, a nephew of Brigham Young who was one of the early settlers in Leamington.(*)
The station at the head of Echo Canyon was also known as Frenchies and Castle Rock. It was a contract station on the Pony Express and Stage route. Jabusch believes that the station originally stood in the abandoned town called Castle Rock, which was located about a mile and a half down the canyon from the present junk yard site known as Castle Rock. The structure was apparently built of logs, and after being sold to a French trapper in 1867, was moved up to the canyon to the junk yard site, owned in recent years by the late Curtis Moore.Traveler and author Horace Greeley did not enjoy the ride through Echo Canyon. His description:
“The canyon reminded me afresh that evil and good are strongly interwoven in our earthly lot. Throughout the desolate region which stretches from the Sweetwater River nearly or quite to Bridger, we had in the main the best natural road I ever traveled…. But in this fairly-grassed ravine, hemmed in by steep, picturesque bluffs… we found the ‘going decidedly bad,’ and realized that in the dark it could not be but dangerous.”
Burton, who often found little to praise on the western frontier, seemed to be fascinated with the “picturesque bluffs.” Despite a team of unbroken and rather fractious mules he wrote,
“A whole Petra was there, a system of projecting prisms, pyramids, and pagoda towers, a variety of form that enabled you to see whatever your peculiar vanity might be; columns, porticoes, facades and pedestals. Twin lines of bluffs, a succession of buttresses all fretted and honey-combed, a double row of steeples slipped from perpendicularity, frowned at each other across the gorge. And the wondrous variety was yet more varied by the kaleidoscopic transformation caused by change of position: at every different point the same object bore a different aspect.”Echo Canyon has but one fault: its sublimity will make all other similar features look tame.”
Back to the southeast, and unfortunately on private land, one finds the well-known trail landmark called Cache Cave. The cave was a popular camping spot on the emigrant trail, and, high up on the cave walls where livestock cannot rub, the names of many Mormon Pioneers can still be seen.Information provided by Patrick Hearty, NPEA Utah, 2005.
The Utah State Capitol is the house of government for the U.S. state of Utah. The building houses the chambers and offices of the Utah State Legislature, the offices of the Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Attorney General, the State Auditor and their staffs. The capitol is the main building of the Utah State Capitol Complex, which is located on Capitol Hill, overlooking downtown Salt Lake City.
The Neoclassical revival, Corinthian style building was designed by architect Richard K.A. Kletting, and built between 1912 and 1916. The building was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1978. Beginning in 2004, the capitol underwent a major restoration and renovation project. The project added two new buildings to the complex, while restoring many of the capitol’s public spaces to their original appearance. One of the largest projects during the renovation was the addition of a base isolation system which will allow the building to survive as much as a 7.3 magnitude earthquake. After completion of the renovations, the building was rededicated and resumed normal operation in January 2008.
Manderfield, Utah, just north of Beaver and the birthplace of Philo Taylor Farnsworth who was an American inventor. He is best known for inventing the first completely electronic television. In particular, he was the first to make a working electronic image pickup device (video camera tube), and the first to demonstrate an all-electronic television system to the public.
(*)The area was traveled by the early Mormon pioneers on their journey to where they settled and built Salt Lake City. One of their leaders, Parley P. Pratt, explored the canyon in 1848. He was given a charter the following year to build a toll road through it, which was finished in 1849. The basin at the top of the canyon was good for grazing, and a few families settled there. Early on, the area was deeded to Samuel Snyder, Heber C. Kimball and Jedediah Grant. The settlers named it “Parley’s Park City”, which was shortened to “Park City” in the early 1900s. The first known discovery of ore in this area was by Colonel Patrick E. Connor, who instigated his men to search the area in bringing non-Mormons to the Utah region. The finding of silver, gold and lead sparked the first silver mines in Park City in the 1860s. Park City’s large mining boom brought large crowds of prospectors setting up camps around the mountain terrain, marking the first mining settlements. Although it was not the first find, the Ontario mine, discovered by Herman Buden in 1872 and later purchased by George Hearst, was the first major producer. By 1892 the Silver King Mine and its owners Thomas Kearns and David Keith took the spotlight as one of the most famous silver mines in the world. While silver was thriving in Utah, other mines around the world were depleted, drawing many of these miners to Park City. The town flourished with crowds of miners and wealth. However, the city nearly became a ghost town by the end of the 1950s because of a drop in the price of silver.
The transformation of the town into a ski resort is primarily attributed to the silver need during (and after) World War I economy. The war and Great Depression were crippling the economy. Once the site of the largest silver-mining camp in the country, the town was virtually destroyed by fire in 1898. Tragedy struck again in 1902 when 34 miners were killed in an explosion in the Day West Mine. The mining community never fully recovered and the miners resorted to desperate measures. These desperate measures were based on the need to revive the economy, and in doing so the miners gave up their mining heritage, turning to the rising interest in the West and skiing. The silver industry was suffering severely, and the town was hanging by a thread when ‘Parkite’ miners presented to Utahns Inc. a proposal for a ski resort called Treasure Mountain which ended up saving the town. This ski resort opened in 1963 on 10,000 acres of land the miners owned with mineral rights. This is said to be when tourists first largely began to visit Park City. This marks the beginning of the ski industry largely promoted by the Utah State Legislation as a destination resort.
Since the rise of the skiing and tourist economy, Park City houses more tourists than residents. It has become a place of fame through the 2002 Winter Olympic games and provides more attractions than ever before. In the 1950s, Utah began to feed on Park City as a mountain getaway, and not until D. James Canon promoted winter sports in Utah, with the promotional scheme of “Ski Utah” and “The Greatest Snow on Earth” did many drive to see the city. Utah drew in over 648,000 tourists in 1970 and now a yearly average of 4 million tourists. In a small town with a population of 8,000, the average number of tourists in Park City is 600,000 per year. This significant increase in visitors could be credited to promotional material that is carefully planned and distributed by the Utah Publicity and Tourist Council. Growth has accelerated in the last few decades, and Park City is now one of the most affluent and lively resort towns in the United States.
The tourist industry now contributes over one third of the total economic value to the state of Utah. In particular, Park City draws in 3,006,071 average annual visitors; in the winter 1,603,775, and in the summer 1,402,296. Park City prospers from the average nightly visitor spending ranging from $100 to $350. Currently, Park City primarily relies on its tourist industry from skiing to restaurants to hiking and biking. The makeover of Park City has stimulated an entirely different culture of expenditure, adventure, and wealth, and their promotional material indulges it.
As long ago as the 1920s, miners in Park City were using underground trains and shafts to gain access to the mountain for skiing. Aerial trams once used for hauling ore were converted into chairlifts. To this day, there are still more than 1,000 miles of old silver-mine workings and tunnels beneath the slopes at Park City Mountain Resort and neighboring Deer Valley. Park City might be a fairly nondescript-appearing town were it not for its colorful and evocative Main Street, where 64 Victorian buildings are listed in the National Register of Historic Places. There are many remaining mine buildings, mine shafts (most blocked off from outsiders with large steel doors), and hoists, including the weathered remains of the California-Comstock and Silver King Mines and the water towers once used to hydrate one of the biggest mines, the Silver King, provide a hint of the history of this mining town transformed in economic upheaval into a skiing resort.