front cover of Alma Richards
Alma Richards
Larry R. Gerlach
University of Utah Press, 2016
Alma Richards, as an unsung high school student, surprisingly set an Olympic record for the high jump in the 1912 Stockholm Olympics. He was the only native Utahn and member of the LDS church to win an Olympic gold medal in the twentieth century. After a stellar collegiate track career that saw him lead Cornell to three national championships, Richards for two decades reigned as America’s most accomplished multiple-event track and field athlete, winning national titles in five different events. Despite his prominence in the history of American sports, this is the first treatment of his athletic career and personal life.

The book traces Richards from his boyhood in rural Parowan, Utah, to Cornell and through his service as an officer in World War I and his teaching career in Los Angeles. His story is that of a remarkable athlete, but also that of a man struggling for personal fulfillment while endeavoring to retain his Mormon heritage amid his changing religious circumstances and participation. More than a century has passed since Alma Richards won an Olympic gold medal, yet this story about man and sport—the drive to excel, victory as validation of hard work, the quest for public recognition and, ultimately, the achievement of self-identity and self-satisfaction—still resonates today.

front cover of Ancient Caves of the Great Salt Lake Region
Ancient Caves of the Great Salt Lake Region
Julian H Steward
University of Utah Press, 2009
From 1930 to 1931, the University of Utah and the Smithsonian Institute’s Bureau of American Ethnology sponsored archaeological field work in the vicinity of the Great Salt Lake. Particular attention was paid to caves that had once been submerged by Lake Bonneville, a prehistoric lake that was some 1,000 feet above the level of the remnant Great Salt Lake. Previous studies had demonstrated that such caves, as the lake subsided, were soon inhabited by ancient peoples and the archaeological explorations were aimed at discovering ancient cultures that could be dated by reference to the chronology of the lake. The field work included thorough excavations of two large caves on the western shore of Promontory Point and one large cave on the southern shore of the Great Salt Lake, as well as reconnaissance of a number of smaller caves on Promontory Point and the northern shore of Bear River Bay. The work was led by Julian Steward, who prepared this report.

First published in 1937 by the Bureau of American Ethnology, this edition of Ancient Caves of the Great Salt Lake Region features a new foreword by Joel Janetski.  

front cover of The Ancient Culture of the Fremont River in Utah
The Ancient Culture of the Fremont River in Utah
Report on the Explorations under the Claflin-Emerson Fund, 1928-1929
Noel Morss
University of Utah Press, 2009
Until 1927, the wild area of Utah near the Colorado River and below the mouth of the Escalante River was almost unknown archaeologically. The Claflin-Emerson Fund of Harvard’s Peabody Museum was created to provide support for an extended survey of southeastern Utah west of the Colorado River.

One such survey was conducted by author Noel Morss during the summer of 1928, resulting in an unexpected revelation: the Fremont (Dirty Devil) River drainage area being surveyed proved to be host to a prehistoric culture different from all other established Southwestern cultures. Excavations completed the following field season confirmed Morss’s findings. This distinct culture was defined by unique unpainted black or gray pottery, sole use of a primitive moccasin type, elaborate clay figurines, and abundant distinctive pictographs. Though too definite and well developed to be confined to a single drainage, Morss concluded that the Fremont were nonetheless a periphery culture and not an integral part of the mainstream of Southwestern development.

Originally published in 1931 and now featuring a new foreword by Duncan Metcalfe, The Ancient Culture of the Fremont River in Utah has become a classic in Southwestern archaeology, furthering a conversation about the early peoples of southern Utah that continues even today.

front cover of Archaeological Observations North of the Rio Colorado
Archaeological Observations North of the Rio Colorado
Neil M Judd
University of Utah Press, 2010

Archeological Observations North of the Rio Colorado was originally published in 1926 as part of the Smithsonian Institution’s Bureau of American Ethnology (Bulletin 82). It contains the report of six seasons of fieldwork undertaken by Neil M. Judd for the Bureau between 1915 and 1920 in western Utah and northwestern Arizona. The original investigation set out to examine alleged prehistoric sites near Beaver, Utah—specifically sites related to the “Pueblo ruins” found elsewhere in the Southwest. This in turn led to a much larger project, as there were more sites than expected recognized as having a cultural affinity with other prehistoric Puebloan sites. During these six years, Judd’s team covered a region from the Grand Canyon to the northern shore of the Great Salt Lake, east to the Green River and west into the deserts of Nevada.

This book is part of the University of Utah Press’s ongoing effort to reprint selected out-of-print volumes that apply directly to Utah archaeology, in an attempt to allow current students easier access and use of historic information. Owing to continued development, increased artifact collection, and on-going degradation, Utah archaeology is far different today than it was a century ago. The scientific works of these early archaeologists provide a glimpse of the variability that existed within sites and geographic areas in the early 1900s and gives a picture of Utah archaeology in an earlier era.


front cover of Archeological Excavations in Beef Basin, Utah
Archeological Excavations in Beef Basin, Utah
Jack R. Rudy
University of Utah Press, 1955
A report on the salvage survey and testing of nine archaeological sites during the years 1952-1953, located in Beef Basin, southeastern Utah. 

front cover of Archeological Survey of the La Sal Mountain Area, Utah
Archeological Survey of the La Sal Mountain Area, Utah
Alice Hunt
University of Utah Press, 1953
A report on the findings and interpretation of an archaeological survey completed in the La Sal Mountain area near the town of Moab, Utah. This work was completed in 1949-1952 and summarizes about 350 recorded sites, many at high elevations. 

front cover of An Architectural Travel Guide to Utah
An Architectural Travel Guide to Utah
Martha Bradley Evans
University of Utah Press, 2020
An Architectural Travel Guide to Utah invites visitors and other explorers of Utah to see the state’s history, material culture, settlement, and natural landscape through the lens of its buildings. With more than 600 buildings as examples, this guide takes readers through Utah’s cities and rural villages, exploring neighborhoods and other built landscapes. An adobe house from the 1860s speaks volumes about the transmission of ideas, respectability, the places of origin of Utah’s white settlers, and their use of place-specific materials. The Utah State Capitol reflects the Neoclassicism preferred for statehouses throughout the nation, but its site overlooking a canyon to the east, the Great Salt Lake to the northwest, and the long view south down State Street—one of the longest streets in America—set it apart and make it very much of its place. From the most common vernacular cabin to the modern architecture of Abravanel Symphony Hall and the Salt Lake Arts Center, this guide uses the diversity of Utah’s architecture to showcase the diversity of its people, their visions for the good life, and the particular responses of their  built environment to the unique geography of this beautiful state. Includes 276 images, many in color.

front cover of As If the Land Owned Us
As If the Land Owned Us
An Ethnohistory of the White Mesa Utes
Robert S. McPherson
University of Utah Press, 2011

The Ute people of White Mesa have a long, colorful, but neglected history in the Four Corners region. Although they ranged into the Great Basin, Southwest, and parts of the Rocky Mountains as hunters, gatherers, and warriors, southeastern Utah was home. There they adapted culturally and physically to the austere environment while participating in many of the well-known events of their times.

In As If the Land Owned Us, Robert McPherson has gathered the wisdom of White Mesa elders as they imparted knowledge about their land—place names, uses, teachings, and historic events tied to specific sites—providing a fresh insight into the lives of these little-known people. While there have been few published studies about the Southern Utes, this ethnohistory is the first to mix cultural and historic events. The book illustrates the life and times of the White Mesa Utes as they faced multiple changes to their lifeways. It is time for their history to be told in their terms.


front cover of The Avenues of Salt Lake City
The Avenues of Salt Lake City
Cevan J. LeSieur
University of Utah Press, 2012

Salt Lake City’s oldest residential historic district is a neighborhood known as the Avenues. During the late nineteenth century this area was home to many of the most influential citizens of Salt Lake City. Built from 1860 until 1930, it contains a mix of middle and upper middle class homes of varying architectural styles. This architectural diversity makes the Avenues unique among Utah's historic districts. For the past thirty years, as citizens have rediscovered the value of living in historic properties near downtown and the University of Utah, preservation efforts have soared in the area.

In 1980, the Avenues was established as a historic district and the Utah Historical Society published The Avenues of Salt Lake City. That book’s authors, Karl T. Haglund and Philip F. Notarianni, gleaned much about the area’s history by using information found on the historic district applications. This newly revised edition of The Avenues of Salt Lake City by Cevan J. LeSieur updates the original with a greatly expanded section on the historic homes in the neighborhood, including more than 600 new photos, and additional material covering the history of the Avenues since 1980.

The book is designed so that readers can take it along as a guide when exploring the neighborhoods. All the pictures of Avenues homes are accompanied with architectural information and brief histories of the properties. This volume makes a valuable resource for those interested in the history of the Avenues and its diverse architecture, and for anyone interested in Utah history, Utah architecture, and historic preservation.


front cover of The Awkward State of Utah
The Awkward State of Utah
Coming of Age in the Nation, 1896-1945
Charles Peterson and Brian Cannon
University of Utah Press, 2015

The half century between statehood in 1896 and the end of World War II in 1945 was a period of transformation and transition for Utah. This book interprets those profound changes, revealing sweeping impacts on both institutions and ordinary people. Drawing upon expertise honed over decades of teaching, researching, and writing about Utah’s history, the authors incorporate fresh archival sources, new oral histories, and hundreds of scholarly articles and books as they narrate the little-known story of the crucial formative years when Utah came of age.

During its sometimes awkward years of adolescence and maturation, Utah was gradually incorporated into the American political, social, and economic mainstream. Urban and industrial influences supplanted agrarian traditions, displacing people socially, draining the countryside of population, and galvanizing a critical crisis in values and self-identification. National corporations and mass labor movements took root in the state as commerce expanded. Involvement in world events such as the Spanish-American War, two world wars, and the Great Depression further set the stage for entry into the modern, globalized world as Utahns immersed themselves in national politics and became part of the democratic, corporate culture of twentieth-century America. 


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