This monument marks the site of the Grantsville Fort built in1853 as protection against the Indians. The fort was thirty rods square with walls twelve feet high five feet thick at the base ad eighteen inches thick at the top. The north wall was one hundred forty three feet north of this point.
About fifty people lived inside the fort during the early settlement of the town of Grantsville, which was named in honor of George D. Grant, one of its pioneers.
This historic marker is located at the Grantsville First Ward Chapel at 297 West Clark Street in Grantsville, Utah. It was erected July 24, 1934 by the Grantsville Chapter of the Daughters of Utah Pioneers and by the Utah Pioneer Trails and Landmarks Association.
Hilda Anderson Erickson, born in Ledsjö, Sweden October 11, 1859 was the last surviving immigrant pioneer. In 1866 at the age of 6 she crossed the plains with her family in the Abner Lowry Company. She married John A. Erickson in the Endowment House in 1882. Soon after the couple was called to serve an LDS mission among the Goshute Indians in Ibapah, Utah. Later the couple homesteaded the “Last Chance Ranch” with their son Perry and daughter, Amy.
A talented seamstress, tailor, and licensed obstetric, Hilda was known as the “Doctor” to many expectant mothers. After the ranch was sold Hilda opened a store in Grantsville which she operated for 21 years. She drove her own car until she was 94 and at 99 flew to Nauvoo, Ill. to be honored by the Centennial Commission of Utah. Her return flight was the first passenger jet airplane to land at the Salt Lake Airport. She passed away in Jan. 1968 at the age of 108.
Kate B. Carter in Our Pioneer Heritage said of Hilda, “Probably no woman in our state has lived a more energetic life.”
This monument to a grand lady was erected by the Sons of Utah Pioneers to honor all Utah pioneers.
Sculptor Peter M. Fillerup
Note: President James E. Faust dedicated this statue that stands in front of the Grantsville City Hall, on June 7, 1997. Hilda Anderson Erickson was the last survivor of 80,000 pioneers who crossed the plains prior to 1869 by handcart or wagon.
This is Sons of Utah Pioneers marker #69, located at 429 East Main Street in Grantsville, Utah
Grantsville was first known by the name Twenty Wells, due to the many sweetwater artesian springs in the area. It was first settled in 1848 as a seasonal livestock grazing site for stock owners in Salt Lake City. The first permanent settlers arrived in 1850 to establish one of Brigham Young’s more than 350 Mormon colonies throughout Utah Territory. By then, the fortified town was known as Willow Creek. Three years later, with almost 30 families living in the settlement, it was renamed Grantsville in honor of George D. Grant, the leader of a detachment of the Nauvoo Legion militia sent to control hostile Native Americans in the Tooele Valley. Grant is also known for leading a group to rescue members of the Martin Handcart Company. The later years of the decade brought many hardships to Grantsville’s citizens, including drought, grasshopper infestations, and the settlement’s temporary abandonment in advance of the arrival of Johnston’s Army. Ironically, the arrival of the army and its construction of Camp Floyd in nearby Cedar Valley ended up greatly benefiting Grantsville’s settlers as they were then able to trade with the army for many needed provisions. By the end of the next decade, the 1860s, Grantsville had become a largely self-sufficient oasis of orchards and shade trees at the edge of the Territory’s western deserts. Brigham Young himself visited Grantsville on several occasions, both officially and unofficially, and dedicated the first permanent church building in 1866. The building stands today, though it is no longer owned by the Church. The Lincoln Highway passed through the city in 1925 after it was realigned to the north, spurring business along Main Street.