West Valley Posts:
- First Log from the Granary
- Hawarden (Historic home)
- Parks in West Valley
- West Valley City Hall
- William McLachlan Farmhouse
- West Valley by Address
The earliest known residents of the western Salt Lake Valley were Native American bands of the Ute and Shoshoni tribes.
The first European people to live in the area were the Latter-day Saints (Mormons). The Euro-Americans arrived in the Salt Lake Valley in 1847. The area was first staked out by settler Joseph Harker and his family in the area they named as “over Jordan” (referring to the land west of the Jordan River, which runs through the valley).
The Granger area was settled by Welsh Latter-day Saints who had come to Utah with Dan Jones in 1849. Irrigation systems and agriculture were developed in the area, and it was Elias Smith who proposed the area’s name on account of its successful farming. At other times high alkali content made farming difficult, but there were enough Latter-day Saints to form a separate Granger Ward in 1884. Granger and vicinity had about 1,000 people in 1930.
Hunter was not settled until 1876. This settlement was started by Rasmus Nielsen, Edward Rushton, August Larsen and about seven others along with their families. Irrigation began in 1881 and the main crop was fruit trees.
Pioneer Crossing Bridge
Erected 2013 – This bridge commemorates the area where the first pioneers crossed the Jordan River to settle the West side of the Salt lake Valley. In November 1848, the family of Joseph and Susannah Harker were the first “over Jordan” and built a log home near 3300 South and 1400 West.
On January 9, 1849, the families of Thomas MacKay, John Bennion, Samuel Bennion, Thomas Tarbet, William Blackhurt, William Farrer, John Robinson and James Taylor crossed the Jordan River on the ice and built dugouts and cabins in this area.
Other settlers followed these first pioneer, resulting in many prosperous communities West of the Jordan River. Pioneer Crossing Bridge honors these first families and all others who have sought a brighter future by making their home on the Salt Lake Valley’s West side.
Moesser – Rushton Granary
Erected c1878 in Hunter, Preserved 2014 – As pioneers and homesteaders moved West across the Salt Lake Valley they prospered in developing farming communities. Harvested lumber from Bingham, Harker and Coon Canyons in the Oquirrh Mountains was used by settlers to build area homes, barns and granaries.
Pioneer Joseph Hyrum Moesser constructed this granary near his adobe brick house in c1878 at approximately 4450 South 5400 West in Hunter. Newly wed Alma E Rushton acquired this granary and surrounding farm in 1917. Merging it into the Rushton homestead across the street. This historic granary was in use for over 100 years of agricultural production and is perhaps the oldest building in West Valley City today. It commemorates all those that seek to build and shape their community into a better place.
In 1853 the settlers west of the Jordan River were advised by President Brigham Young to build a fort, to protect them from Indians. Thick walls of rock and adobe, with one gate surrounded two acres of land. Adobe partitions separated dwellings that faced a central area containing a combined church and school and a well of brackish water. The fort was located north of the present site of Taylorsville Cemetery. The foundation of this marker is built of rock from pioneer homes of this community.
Above: The historic marker that was there from 1941 until at least 2007 when I took the photos.
Below: I returned in 2017 and the plaque is replaced with a new look and slightly rearranged wording.
Upon the advice of Brigham Young, the first settlers west of the Jordan River built English Fort in 1853 for protection from Indians. Thick walls of rock and adobe with one gate surrounded the two acres of land. Adobe partitions separated the dwellings within which faced a central area containing a combined church and school and a well of brackish water. The fort was located north of the present site of Taylorsville Cemetery. The foundation of this historic marker is built of rock from the original pioneer homes of this community.
Check out all of the historic markers placed by the Daughters of Utah Pioneers at JacobBarlow. com/dup