Monday, November 23, 2009

U.S.S. Utah in the News!

A salute to the USS Utah

87-year-old William Hughes, a crew member of the USS Utah and a Pearl Harbor survivor, watches as the color guards present colors at the Utah State Capitol during the 100th anniversary of the ship's construction Monday. Artifacts from the ship were also placed on display and will be exhibited through the end of the year. The USS Utah was bombed and quickly capsized at Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941. Fifty-eight enlisted men and six officers died when the Utah sank.

Read about it HERE!
Photo from the Deseret News

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Utah in the Union exhibit coming along!

The opening date for the free Utah in the Union exhibit is on MARCH 3rd 2010!
This building-wide exhibit is free to the public and will be open from March 2010 through Jan. 2011.
More updates and exhibit highlights are soon to follow!

History in the News!

Downtown Salt Lake City thrived as shopping mecca for century
Stores such as ZCMI and Auerbach's were popular destinations
By Marc Haddock

Deseret NewsBefore there were shopping malls, there was downtown.
And for more than 100 years, Salt Lake City's downtown was the state's number one shopping destination.
With a vibrant commercial district, Salt Lake's Main Street offered a little bit of everything. Businesses that carved a name in the history of downtown include ZCMI, Auerbach's, P.W. Madsen Furniture, the Dinwoodey furniture company and Dayne's Music, to name a just a few.
"Residents who lived in Salt Lake City prior to the 1960s remember how vibrant the city was, full of life and bustle," according to an article at "Arline Markosian says Salt Lake City was so safe, she and her young sister would often ride a trolley to the Orpheum Theater to watch a film — unaccompanied by her parents — for a nickel."
Most of those store fronts, many featuring creative and colorful displays designed to lure window shoppers in from the streets, have disappeared. Some have moved to other locations. Over the years, Deseret News photographers have captured some of the charm and vibrancy of Salt Lake City's downtown in its glory days. Photo researcher Ron Fox has assembled a collection of these photos, which can be viewed at the newspaper's Web site,
When silver was discovered in Utah about 20 years after the Mormon pioneers arrived, the ramifications split the personality of the commercial district.
Anchoring the "Mormon half" of downtown was ZCMI, which was created to combat the inevitable changes the mines would bring. Brigham Young envisioned an organization that would support home manufacturing and to sell goods "as low as they can be sold."
ZCMI sold a variety of goods, including clothing, wagons, machinery, sewing machines and carpets, and also served as an outlet for the products produced by the Saints. In 1876, the several departments were consolidated under one roof to create what has been called America's first department store.
The "gentile half" was the Exchange Place district near the City and County Building.
The one company that defied the "us vs. them" mentality was Auerbach's, founded by Fred and Herbert Auerbach on Broadway, which became Utah's second largest retail store after ZCMI,
Other earlier businesses succeeded by specializing. Daynes Music, for example, started in 1862 in a log cabin on Main Street.
Dinwoodey Furniture and P.W. Madsen Furniture opened in 1874 and 1875 respectively.

Read more of this story HERE!

T-shirt Contest entry total.

The Capitol Store had a lot of input and entry forms from high school students throughout the state of Utah! Judging of designs will begin momentarily and the four winners will be contacted as soon as possible. Stay tuned to find out about dates.

High Schools with the most entry forms include; Skyline with 16 entries, North Ridge with 22, and South Summit with 27 entries.
The total amount of the entries received is approximately 85!

The Capitol Store and the Capitol Preservation Board would like to send out a special thanks to all Utah students and schools who participated in this exciting Contest! Thanks!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Interim Parking today!

Please be aware this week we have interim meetings, Tuesday, November 17 and Wednesday, November 18. Interim parking includes all of reserved Plaza underground, all of G Lot and the posted areas in the upper surface lots. Thank you for your cooperation.

Hope you are enjoying the fall weather.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Tour the Capitol using TEXT!!!

Visitors are now invited to tour the building via their mobile phones through a new text messaging method. After sending descriptive keywords to a specified number, visitors will receive text-message responses of information on various significant elements within the restored Capitol.
“We hope to attract tech-savvy visitors to the Capitol by providing them with a unique opportunity to enjoy a convenient self-guided tour directly from a cellular phone,” said Allyson Gamble, Director of Public Relations, Communications and Visitor Services.

To access the information about the various elements of the Utah State Capitol, simply text one of the keywords below to 83043. Instruction cards are available in the Capitol Visitor Services Center.

Key Words: Lions, Hall, Exhibits, Brigham, Governor, Gold, Dome, WPA, Niche, Lunettes, House, Chamber, Court, Galleries and Base.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Paying Respect for our Veterans

Although we are a day late, the Capitol Preservation Board would like to pay their respect for the men and women who helped serve this wonderful country throughout the years!

Happy Veterans Day to all!!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

U.S.S. Utah exhibit Event!

The U.S.S. Utah exhibit, located on the 4th floor of the Utah State Capitol building, will be closing in December. To help gain awareness of this closing event, the Utah State Capitol facebook FAN page has created an event page with event information, pictures, videos and contact information.

Click on the picture below to view the EVENT PAGE and join those attending before it is too late!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009 - Chief Massosoit returns home to State Capitol

Massasoit in the News!!! Watch the news clip by clicking the link below! - Chief Massosoit returns home to State Capitol

Video Courtesy of

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Massasoit Re-instillation Pictures!

Massasoit statue at the Utah State Capitol

Massasoit returned to the Utah State Capitol on November 5, 2009 after brief interviews with the media. Complete with a granite base and bronze plaque, Massasoit now stands on the East side of the Capitol complex.
Among those in attendance to welcome Massasoit back, were three of his decedents living in Utah. Tenth generation descendent, Glenn Baldwin and his wife Lois, from Salt Lake City, traveled up to view the re-instillation and met with former decedents, Mary Hilliard, 11th generation descendent from Ogden, and her daughter Joni Crane, 12th generation descendent from Vernal.
All three descendents were able to relate some history of Massasoit and take pictures with the famous statue after it had been erected.
They spoke with Denice Dallin Wheeler, relative to Cyrus E. Dallin, the internationally famous sculptor from Utah who sculpted Massasoit and offered him as a gift to the Utah State Capitol in 1922. Wheeler was happy to represent her famous Uncle by giving interviews with the media and speaking personally with the public.
After the re-instillation press conference, lasting no more than an hour, Massasoit was left to welcome future visitors to his new home at the Utah State Capitol.

Re-instillation of Massasoit

Re-instillation on November 5, 2009.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Massasoit Comes Tomorrow!

Massasoit will be returning to the Utah State Capitol tomorrow durring a press confrence held at 11 a.m. on the East side of the Main Capitol Complex.
Massasoit, created by nationally recognized sculptor and Utah native Cyrus E. Dallin, is famously known as the Wampanoags Nation Chief who first welcomed the Pilgrims at Plymouth Rock after they disembarked from the Mayflower.
Dallin’s sculpture was first unveiled at the Utah State Capitol on July 31, 1922 at a time when Utah struggled economically. The State graciously accepted the generous gift from one of its most famous sons, adding to the Capitol beautiful artwork they could not have otherwise afforded.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

North Layton Jr. High Gets Involved.

Besides placing Massasoit at the Capitol, Utah State Capitol complex offers several beautiful and historical art pieces that honor Utah and its people.
To help involve students while offering them an educational experience, North Layton Jr. High encouraged their students to write in and explain to the Capitol Preservation Board what prominent Utahn they thought should be honored at our Capitol.
The Capitol Preservation Board was happy to receive around 100 letters from excited students! Below is a response written by Capitol Curator Dr. Judith McConkie to the school in thanking them for their involvement.

We have also included copies of some of the letters mailed in by the students. You will find this in future blogs. Some may be hard to read due to the quality of the scanned document.

Massasoit in the News.

This is a letter that appeared in the Brockton, MA newspaper the week of November 27-29, 2008

Far be it from us to get in the middle of a debate over what kind of American Indian should be portrayed by a statue on the grounds of the Utah State Capitol, but, well, what the heck.

For many decades, a bronze statue of Massasoit, the Wampanoag Indian chief who made peace with the Pilgrims in 1621 and helped the new settlers to establish their thriving Massachusetts colony, has stood there. It is a copy of a statue that looks out over the harbor in Plymouth and was erected on Coles Hill in 1921.

So why is there a copy in Utah? Because the well-known sculptor, Cyrus Dallin, was a native of Utah and gave his original plaster cast to the state, which then made the bronze copy. But since the statue and the area in Utah has been undergoing renovations, some Navajos have come forward to complain that the statue is not representative of local tribes.

That may have some validity, but the Navajos don’t speak for all the Indians of Utah, which was named after the Ute Indian tribe. There are reservations in the state for Goshute and Paiute Indians, but it still remains a state dominated by Mormons, with Indians pushed to the periphery.

Several arguments can be made for keeping the Massasoit statue right where it is. Peggy Baker, director of the Pilgrim Hall Museum in Plymouth, said it is more of a tribute to a famous artist than to Massasoit. There also is the point that no one really knows what Massasoit looked like and Dallin used a “representative” figure to illustrate Chief Massasoit, who also was known as Ousamequin and helped keep peace between Indians and Pilgrims settlers for four decades until his death and the later carnage of King Philip’s War.

Dallin was born in 1861 in Springville, Utah, and studied sculpture in Boston. Among his more well-known works, including Massasoit, are statues of Gov. William Bradford and Paul Revere. But his best-known work is probably “Appeal to the Great Spirit,” which stands in front of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston. There also is a museum dedicated to his work in Arlington, but he always maintained his connections to Utah and many of his sculptures remain on display there.

If Utah leaders and Indian groups decide that Massasoit isn’t quite right for Salt Lake City, so be it. But Dallin, a colleague of Augustus St. Gaudens and Daniel Chester French, represents Utah as well as any artist and the state should be proud to prominently display the work of the man who was born a Mormon and never forgot from where he came.

Monday, November 2, 2009

U.S.S. Utah Exhibit Virtual Tour

Click HERE to see more Youtube videos by the Utah State Capitol.

Massasoit Pictures!

View more pictures of Massasoit on picasa HERE!!

Chief Massasoit returns to the Utah State Capitol

Salt Lake City, Utah –
At 11 a.m. on Thursday, November 5, 2009, the monumental bronze sculpture of Massasoit, created by nationally recognized sculptor Cyrus E. Dallin, will return to the Utah State Capitol Grounds. The sculpture greets visitors as they enter the Capitol Hill Complex from the east side of the Capitol. A brief press conference related to the re-installation will take place at the foot of the statue at the time of installation.

Massasoit is famously known as the Wampanoags Nation Chief who first welcomed the Pilgrims at Plymouth Rock after they disembarked from the Mayflower. Dallin created the sculpture in the 1920’s. He was born and raised in Springville, Utah, and is known internationally for his realistic rendering of Chief Massasoit as well as the Angel Moroni statue that sits on top of the Salt Lake City Temple.

Dallin’s sculpture was first unveiled at the Utah State Capitol on July 31, 1922 at a time when Utah struggled economically. The State graciously accepted the generous gift from one of its most famous sons, adding to the Capitol beautiful artwork they could not have otherwise afforded.

During the first unveiling, Dallin expressed his desire that the state accept the gift as a token of his love for his native state of Utah. “These mountains are linked with the story of the Indian,” he said. “In setting up this man of peace, who saved the Plymouth Colony, I have a hope…that I might model the old Chief Washakie of the Shoshones, who, too, was a man of peace; and he wielded as potent and saving an influence over the first Pioneers…as ever did Massasoit over the Pilgrims.”

Classically trained in Paris, Dallin practiced sculpting during a period in art history which was a flowering of classical architecture and sculpture.

Capitol Curator Judith McConkie, PhD, noting that Massasoit is often compared to famous European sculptures, states that “The pose and the idealized body are a direct homage to Michelangelo’s David”.

Massasoit originally stood in the center of the Capitol’s Rotunda from 1923 until 1957, when it was moved outside to the South entrance of the Capitol Hill Complex. Now, complete with a new platform, Dallin’s beloved sculpture will be able to once again call Utah’s Capitol home.

U.S.S. Utah Closing on DEC. 7th

The FREE U.S.S. Utah exhibit will be coming to an end on December 7th. This exhibit, located on the fourth floor of the Utah State Capitol building, celebrates the history and significance of one of the most famous battleships at Pearl Harbor.
With beautiful display cases containing newspapers, clothing, battleship artifacts, and miniature replicas, as well as walls covered with historical photographs of the ship and its people, there is something for everyone.

Make sure you make it up to the Capitol to see this historically powered exhibit before it closes!

Picasa Uploads!!

Check out our new Picasa uploads HERE!!!