The Cemetery in Moroni, Utah
- Moroni, Utah
Manti was one of the first communities settled in what was to become Utah. Chief Wakara (or Walker), a Ute Tribe leader, invited Brigham Young to send pioneers to the area to teach his people the techniques of successful farming. In 1849, Brigham Young dispatched a company of about 225 settlers, consisting of several families, to the Sanpitch (now Sanpete) Valley. Under the direction of Isaac Morley and George Washington Bradley, the settlers arrived at the present location of Manti in November. They endured a severe winter by living in temporary shelters dug into the south side of the hill on which the Manti Temple now stands. Brigham Young named the new community Manti, after a city mentioned in the Book of Mormon. Manti was incorporated in 1851. The first mayor of Manti was Dan Jones. Manti served as a hub city for the settlement of other communities in the valley.
Historic Buildings in Manti:
Historic Homes in Manti:
Other Manti Related Posts:
Relations with the local Native Americans deteriorated rapidly and the Walker War soon ensued. The war consisted primarily of various raids conducted by the Native Americans against Mormon outposts in Central and Southern Utah. The Walker War ended in the mid-1850s in an understanding negotiated between Brigham Young and Wakara. Shortly thereafter, Welcome Chapman and Wakara oversaw the baptism of scores of Wakara’s tribe members. Although immediate hostilities ended, none of the underlying conflicts were resolved.
In 1865 Utah’s Black Hawk War erupted when an incident between a Manti resident and a young chieftain exploded into open warfare between the Mormon settlers and the local Native Americans. Forts were built in Manti and other nearby communities. Smaller settlements in the area were temporarily abandoned for the duration of the war. In the fall of 1867, Chief Black Hawk made peace with the settlers, but sporadic violence occurred until 1872 when federal troops finally intervened. Many Mormon settlers who fought and died in the wars are buried in the Manti Cemetery. Most of the Utes were eventually relocated to the Uintah and Ouray Indian Reservation in Eastern Utah.
Originally called Draper, Freedom began in 1871 and is located just west of Moroni in Sanpete County.
History of Freedom, Utah by Janice and Marlyce Rawlings
L.D.S. Ward organized: 1877-1881
L.D.S. Ward reorganized: 1897-1926
Population at its maximum; About 20 families, over 200 people
Electricity came to Freedom: 1935
The fruit orchards in Freedom were known as the best in Sanpete County. They grew apples, peaches, apricots, cherries, pears and plums. At the top of the street at the foot of the mountain there was a large piece of ground planted in strawberries and raspberries.
William L. Draper, known as “Doc Draper”, moved his family to Freedom in 1870 because it was a very lush, fertile valley where grain would grow very tall. William’s brothers Henry, Grant, Parley and Albert followed him to homestead in Freedom. They originally called this place Draper. The postal
authorities made them change the name because there was already a town called Draper, Utah, south of Salt Lake. They then renamed it Freedom because freedom was what they wanted and they felt free now to do
anything they wanted. Freedom became a County Precinct in 1875. The Drapers filed on their homesteads in 1878. The town was never incorporated. William Draper died in Freedom.
Freedom grew as many people found it a desirable place to live. At one time there were as many as twenty families making a population of over 200 people residing in Freedom. There were approximately 30 houses in Freedom during the depression. Many of the families were polygamist families. There are those who say Freedom, in the springtime, looked like the Garden of Eden.
The railroad was run from Nephi through Freedom to the coal mines in Wales. Martin Van Buren Taylor had a contract to build some of the grade for the railroad. He took his boys and some other people and built the grade from Fountain Green to Wales. There was a little shack about a mile south of Freedom which was a depot where they could flag down the train so people could get on.
The town of Freedom had a school house, church, town hall, and a small store that was connected to Dorcey Draper’s home. At first they had to go to town for their mail but eventually they had their own Post
Freedom had its own school house. In the front of a book that belonged to Glen Taylor’s sister, in the possession of Margaret Taylor at this time, it states that school started October 6, 1902. Her husband Glen Taylor told her his memory of the school as it was when he attended in 1906. The school was built of lumber and was approximately 30 feet by 50 feet in size. It was built between the old home of Joseph Draper (Dorcey’s Dad) and Frank Eliason’s fence line.
The one room school house had two large windows on the west side and had two windows on the opposite side. There were also two smaller windows on the entrance side of the school. The heating stove
was located in the center of the room. The school benches and the desks were lined up on each side of the stove. There were two students to a desk and they were seated according to the grade they were in from beginner to sixth grade. Later on single desks were purchased. There was a blackboard at the front of the room and the teacher’s desk. The children wrote on slates. There were between eight and sixteen children at various times in attendance depending on the number of eligible aged children. The children started school at the age of six and there were six grades taught in the Freedom School House.
The children of Freedom walked to school as well as the children from Jerusalem, which is a mile or more to the north of Freedom. They took their lunches with them. School started at 8:00 a.m. and let out at 4:00 p.m. They had a morning and afternoon recess at which time they played marbles, baseball, tag and other sports.
Some of the teachers were Mary D. Taylor, Hannah Hardy, Myrtle Thorpe, Sarah Sumsion, Delphia Rees and Marie Anderson. Most of them lived with families in Freedom during the school year.
After the sixth grade the children rode in a covered wagon to Moroni to school, but the children from Jerusalem still had to walk to Freedom to ride in the wagon to school. They had blankets and heated rocks to keep them warm on the trip during the winter. The trip took two hours with the horses at a fast trot. It was dark when they left Freedom and dark when they returned. The children did their studies at night by lamplight. Lather on they got a school bus. The one room school house in Freedom was closed down in about 1918. The children were then bused to Moroni and it was only a ten to fifteen minute ride.
Freedom’s L.D.S. Church
When the Sanpete Stake of Zion was organized July 4, 1877, the saints of Draper were organized into a ward called Freedom, with Henry Draper as Bishop. He acted as Bishop until 1880, soon after this the ward organization was discontinued, and the members were transferred to Moroni.
When the polygamist family of Martin Van Buren Taylor moved to Freedom a new ward was organized on May 5, 1897, with Martin Van Buren Taylor as Bishop. The church house was on the north east corner where the road turns to go to Maple Canyon. It had a nice organ in it, which the people of
Freedom purchased. The organ, pulpit and clock from the church are in the DUP room in Moroni. In 1926 the Freedom Ward was dissolved because so many families had moved away. The few remaining families were put in the Moroni West Ward.
Freedom Cemetery (see this page for photos)
After Doc Draper lost a four month old son and a five year old girl in 48 hours he buried them side by side on his farm. This was the beginning of the Freedom Cemetery in 1885. Doc Draper’s father then came to live with them in Freedom, and he died one year later on May 28, 1886. He was the next person to be buried in the cemetery. The Doc, himself, died May 2, 1887 and was buried there too. There are many children buried in the cemetery because there was an epidemic of Diphtheria which took the lives of many of them.
There is one Indian buried in the cemetery and his name is “Indian Jim” or Jin Wanup. The Mt. Pleasant DUP put a beautiful marble headstone on his grave in 1975 but his name is misspelled on it. It is spelled James Onump on his headstone. He was a full blooded Ute Indian. Indian Jim was a good friend to the people of Freedom and he would spy for them and let them know when the Indians were going to attack. The people of Freedom built him a dugout to live in on the west side of Freedom.
The cemetery is still visited by many people each Memorial Day and other times during the year. It is still a very peaceful and quaint little cemetery where those that come can remember what Freedom used to be like.
Chester was founded by David Candland. In the beginning the town was named Canal Creek after the waterway from which the community received its water. Candland then changed the name to Chesterfield after his hometown in England; it was later reduced to Chester.
This community (like several others) claims to be the closest to the geographic center of Utah.
Centerfield is a city in Sanpete County. The population was 1,048 at the 2000 census. Although Centerfield was a town in 2000, it has since been classified as a fifth-class city by state law.
Centerfield was first known as Skin Town. It seems that about 1880, a new method for tanning cowhides was discovered and implemented in New York. At the same time, Sanpete suffered a terrible winter with such deep snow that many cattle couldn’t find enough forage and died. In order to keep their operations from being a total loss, the ranchers skinned the cows, used the new tanning method on the hides, and hung them out on their fences to dry. The fact that all the fences were draped with cow hides led to the name “Skin Town”. It was also called South Gunnison or Twin Town. When the town was incorporated in 1907, the residents chose the more dignified name of Centerfield because of the community’s central location.
Centerfield is an 1860’s offshoot of Gunnison that evolved two miles south on US 89. Gunnison Field or Gunnison South was a natural site for farmers who worked small “squatters rights” plots of about five acres with oxen and hand plows. After the Indian troubles subsided, log and adobe houses began to appear. A late 1876 petition to ‘build a school convenient to our location’ was an early sign of independence from the mother colony. In 1882 a log cabin was built to serve as school, church and social hall. The 1886-87 church was built of stone and a front tower was added in 1897. Community spirit was strong by that time, and Canute Peterson chose a committee of four who named the place for its location in the fields between Gunnison and Axtell.
The Gunnison Valley Sugar Company built a 500-ton factory in Centerfield, Utah in 1918. The Centerfield factory equipment came from the Washington State Sugar Company plant in Waverly, Washington. The Waverly factory, opened in December 1899, was considered unprofitable and inferior. The Utah Sugar management, including Cutler, advised Washington Sugar in 1901 for the 1902 season, but the factory closed in 1910. It was sold to Gunnison Sugar for $100,000, installed in Centerfield in 1917, and was ready for the 1918 campaign. U-I went on an aggressive anticompetitive campaign (including spreading rumors, leading to U-I’s investigation by the FTC) against Gunnison Valley Sugar Company. In 1920, the William Wrigley Jr. Company purchased the factory to supply their chewing gum production. U-I acquired the Centerfield factory and company in 1940. They proceeded to close the factory in 1956, re-opened from 1958 to 1961, then sold it as scrap in April, 1966.
Ephraim was founded in 1854. Located directly opposite a Native American settlement, Ephraim served as Sanpete County’s most important fort through the end of the Black Hawk War in 1868, which is also the year the city incorporated. The presence of the fort drew diverse settlers to the city, and by 1880 the city was nearly 90% Scandinavian. Although the city’s initial growth was based on the fort and later on agriculture, more recently its growth can be attributed primarily to the presence of Snow College. Ephraim surpassed Manti as the largest city in the county during the 1960 Census and has since surpassed 6,135.
Check out other places in Utah here.
We stopped by the Fairview Museum of History and Art to look around, it was two buildings, it was a holiday (July 4th) and I was surprised they were even open, they offered to open up the North building for us but we decided to save it for another time and just check out the South building.
I had wanted to come see the Mammoth for years since I had many times stopped at the site where it was found up the canyon (see this post.)
I was driving through Fairview and saw this gorgeous old mill and snapped a photo.
I later stopped in at the Museum in town and saw several paintings of the same Mill, I thought I’d post those here.
Here are a couple of interesting blog posts: