I like to stop in Scipio often, they have a petting zoo off to the west of the freeway exit.
- Scipio, Utah
The settlement of Oak City was begun in late summer of 1868, when a few families moved there from the community of Deseret, Utah. They had become discouraged after eight years of unsuccessful attempts to dam the Sevier River to provide water for their crops, and had left the area. The early settlers were familiar with the Oak City area because they had pastured their cattle there in the spring and fall. They chose this area to settle because of the reliable creek and the quality of the land for farming. The town was settled in two phases. The first phase took place in July 1868 and consisted of a few families and young men to survey the town site, clear the land for farming, and provide shelter for the coming winter. Twenty-three more families came in October and November of that year.
Philo T. Farnsworth
“Father of Television”
Philo Taylor Farnsworth was born August 19, 1906 in a log cabin near Beaver, Utah. At an early age, he became familiar with the various components of the telephone and the gramaphone. By age 12, he had a thorough understanding of electronics. In 1922, at age 15, now living in Rigby, Idaho, he developed the concept of the electronic transmission of images, and drew mathematical diagrams to show how this could be done.
In 1927, in San Francisco, California, after having invented and developed numerous vacuum tubes, such as the image dissector which the statue is holding, he was able to transmit and receive a recognizable image.
In 1934, after demonstrating that his ideas of electronic image transmission were the first to be written down, he was issued patents regarding television methods that are still used in every television receiving set, television camera, and transmitter manufactured in the United States as well as abroad.
He was issued over 170 patents regarding electronic inventions, most of which were designed for television. In addition, he also developed the first electron microscope, baby incubator, and medical gastroscope. He pioneered electronic infrared surveillance scopes used in World War Two and ever since. He developed memory vacuum tubes for radar screens, air traffic control, and underwater sonar devices. At the time of his death, he had developed cold cathode-ray tubes that are used in the television and computer industries, and working in cold nuclear fusion.
This early sawed log farm cabin (circa 1890-1900) was relocated to this site from the small hamlet of Manderfield located 5 miles north of Beaver.
Manderfield was known as Indian Creek in pioneer days. The Beaver Chapter of the sons of The Utah Pioneers took on the project when the owners of the building, LaVar and LaRay Cox donated it to the community. It is believed by many to be the birth cabin of Philo T. Farnsworth, the inventor of modern television.
His uncle, Robert Farnsworth, is thought to have built the cabin. Philo’s father and two of his mother’s brothers purchased 800 acres just north of his uncle Robert’s homestead the summer of 1906. Consequently, it is thought that Philo’s family was living with his uncle at the time of his birth, August 19, 1906.
For the first three years of his life Philo’s family lived and farmed in the Manderfield area. The family left Beaver County and lived for a time in the town of Washington, near St. George, then near Vernal in northeastern Utah. They eventually moved to a farm near Rigby, Idaho. As a lad of 15, Philo was attending school in Rigby, when the idea of how to electronically scan and transmit a visual image occured to him. It is said that he was riding on a horse drawn plow which created parallel rows in the farm field in preparation for spring planting when the inspiration of how to dissect a visual image into parallel horizontal lines; electronically scan it and reassemble the original image on a Television screen took root. Fortunately he diagrammed his idea on a small piece of paper which he gave to his teacher at Rigby High School. He was 21 years old when he was finally able to transmit an image of his wife, Elma.
The teacher kept the piece of paper, and years later was able to produce it as evidence when Philo’s patent was being challenged in the courts by the RCA Corporation, headed by David Sarnoff. The courts ruled in favor of Philo and settled the matter. Philo T. Farnsworth went on to invent numerous other devices. He died March 11, 1971.
This wagon is a reproduction of the wagons used by the Mormon Settlement to travel from Omaha, Nebraska to Salt Lake City, Utah. It traveled the entire trail in 1997 being navigated by Vern and Carol Condie sponsored by the Beaver County Travel Council during the sesquicentennial re-creation of the settlement. Two mules “Ruth & Ruby” pulled the wagon 1000 miles, a trip which took three months.
The Beaver Opera House, built between 1908 and 1909, helped mark the beginning of the local citizens’ desire to build a “New Beaver” that would be the envy of other communities. The board of directors of the opera house were quoted as saying “…nothing is too good for the people of Beaver…” It was designed and built by the architectural firm of Liljenberg and Maeser, and is an impressive example of a Classical Renewal Style building constructed of tuff, the pink stone used in many Beaver residences. The opera house served as a center for community and church affairs for over two decades, and attracted many famous performers. For many years the building was used by the National Guard and today is the home of the Opera House Civic Center.
Beaver Territorial Courthouse
Beaver Territorial Courthouse is considered one of the finest examples of Pioneer architecture. The architect, K.A. Kletting, designed the building in the Queen Ann style with Victorian overtones. The courthouse was constructed under the direction of William Stokes, a soldier of the Union army, stationed at nearby Fort Cameron. Constructed of local materials, the courthouse was built between 1877 and 1882, twenty-one years after Beaver was settled. The original cost of construction was $10,900. the three-storied structure had a deep basement made of black volcanic rock, and the upper portion was constructed of red brick. The building was finished with a tower, which was equipped with a good striking clock which faced all four directions. The clock chimed hourly. Throughout the years additions have been made to the original structure. Vaults and a county jail built of pink sandstone were eventually added to the courthouse.
Beaver was proclaimed the seat of the Second District Territorial Court in September 1870. During that time, the courthouse served as the center of justice for the expansive territory bordered by the Colorado River on the east and south and Nevada Territory on the west. Utah received statehood in 1896 and the Beaver Territorial Courthouse became known as the Beaver County Courthouse.
The courthouse survived a fire in 1889, an earthquake in 1901, and intended demolition in 1970, when a new courthouse was constructed. The courthouse was saved from demolition by the diligent efforts of Beaver Company Daughters of Utah Pioneers. Their committee, comprised of Susie Beeson, Clerynth Larson, Lulu T. Tanner, Viola Yardley, Phoebe Warby, Alta C Hickman, Margery Mackrell, Delia Nowers, Beatrice Hurst, and Jessie Ward, petitioned State Senators and County Commissioners to save the building. On December 5, 1974, county officials and DUP signed a 100-year lease which saved the historically significant courthouse. The building is now used as a DUP Pioneer Museum, and it is hoped that the building will remain in place for many generations for all posterity to enjoy. Renovations were completed in 2010.
See other DUP Markers here.
West of Meadow, southwest of Fillmore, the Meadow Hot Springs are a popular stop that will almost always have people relaxing in the hot water. It is technically private property but as long as we all have some respect we should be able to enjoy it since the owners have been great about sharing this gem.
The first settlers in this area were the family of Charles W. and Eleanor Willden. They were English converts to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints who had come to Utah in 1849. Because Charles was an iron worker, Brigham Young called him to work in the Cedar City iron mission in the 1850s. Willden, like many others, camped here at Cove Creek on the way to his assignment. After the iron works closed down, Charles acquired 160 acres here to establish a farm and way station.
The Willdens planted five cottonwood trees and started construction of “Fort Willden” here on the bank of Cove Creek in 1860. They erected an adobe house and a corral, enclosing both in a 150-foot-square cedar post stockade. They also raised a crop of grain. Before retreating to Beaver for the winter, they “cached” their grain for spring planting, carefully storing it for their return.
Their newlywed daughter and her husband were trapped here by a late winter snowstorm in 1861. Because the adobe house had no coverings over the windows, the couple built a small dugout cabin for shelter and warmth and subsisted on the grain cached there in the fall.
In the spring the whole family moved back and built a two-room home in the eight-to-ten-foot-high stockade. Many travelers found Fort Willden a convenient stopover between Salt Lake City and St. George, and the ranch-fort thrived for a few years.
After a harsh winter and with the growing threat of the Blackhawk war, the Willdens abandoned the fort in 1865. Early in 1867 the deserted fort was used to set up an office of the Deseret Telegraph. Later that year the Cove Fort pioneers arrived, and for several years they used Fort Willden as part of their larger complex.
Cove Fort Posts:
Completed April 12, 1867, by direction of Brigham Young, with L.D.S. Church funds, as a travelers way station and refuge from Indians. Ira N. Hinckley built and maintained it as a hostelry and residence until 1877. A well within the fort provided culinary water. Cove Creek supplied irrigation. One of its 12 original room s was used as a telegraph station. Early in 1861 Charles Willden built 3 rooms and a dugout, known as Willden’s Fort. This was a convenient campsite for President Young and other travelers.
Salt Lake to Southern California Road – Cove Fort
“16th Passed over some beautiful rich bottoms covered with green grass which is uncommon at this season of the year on this route. Passed over a high divide into a beautiful round valley [Cove Fort]. I shot the largest hare in this valley I have ever seen. 23 miles today.” – Addison Pratt, Oct. 16, 1849.
Here is the list of “Salt Lake to Southern California Road” markers I have come across.
The settlement at Meadow Creek began in 1857 when James Duncan and four other families from Fillmore settled on the lush meadowlands near the “Ridge” west of the present town. The town was relocated to its present location a few years later when culinary water problems developed. At that time, the town was located on the Corn Creek Indian Reserve.