About Utah: The old and new near Temple Square

Published: Thursday, Sept. 29 2011 11:08 p.m. MDT

"I guess it was really something in its time," she said as she related the cabin's history, noting, for one thing, the wood floors. "From all the information we have, the Deuels were among the most prosperous of the 1847 pioneers."

Meanwhile, up the street at the Promontory, the anchor residential property in the LDS Church's massive City Creek project, they're looking for modern-day Deuels.

About 30 percent of the units have been purchased, but plenty are still available. A friendly real-estate agent took me on a tour. They're nice. You can get a small studio for $235,000, a one-bedroom from between $301,000 and $543,000, all the way up to a top-story three-bedroom with its own private deck and outstanding views of the temple, Capitol, mountains and the Great Salt Lake for $1,962,000.

Osmyn and Mary Deuel's cabin would fit in the den.

But no one's going to move it up there. For one thing, it's too big for the elevator. For another, the penthouse already has wood floors.

More to the point, it's not for sale. The cabin that went for $60 in 1847 (adjusted for inflation, that would be $1,387.76 in today's dollars) is not for sale at any price. It's priceless no matter how much money you have. All these years later, it's still the most expensive house in town.

Lee Benson's About Utah column runs Monday and Friday. Email: benson@desnews.com

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