Twila Van Leer: Who remembers the date Utah was made a state?

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  • ssev Maple Grove, MN
    Jan. 6, 2018 8:40 a.m.

    "[I]t wouldn’t hurt each Jan. 4 to give a thought and a thanks to the long and arduous efforts of a lot of people to give us our home state."

    The Council of Fifty played a dominant role in the history of statehood for Mormons. After Brigham Young, relocated the Saints in the West, the Council of Fifty organized and incorporated itself into the State of Deseret.

    Prior to this, it was called the Deseret Territory. Deseret Territory was not without its problems. Twelve Mormon slave owners possessed between 60 and 70 black slaves in Deseret Territory, including one Apostle, Charles C. Rich.

    Brigham Young instructed the Utah Legislature to legalize slavery because, as he said, "We must believe in slavery ... We consider it of divine institution, and not to be abolished until the curse pronounced on Ham shall have been removed from his descendants.”

    Utah has come a long way, since then, but it's entire history should be considered when evaluating early efforts at statehood.

  • at long last. . . Kirksville , MO
    Jan. 5, 2018 7:56 a.m.

    lagomorph - perhaps the perception you reference is REALITY.

  • Lagomorph Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 4, 2018 6:16 p.m.

    This is a very charming description of the historical event, but why is the political establishment of a secular civil government filed in the "Faith" section of both the print and online editions of the newspaper? It only serves to reinforce the widespread perception that church and state are one and the same here.