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Diversity of Utah

We venture to say that no state in the Union has such a diversity of industries as has the State of Utah, today

The Wasatch and Oquirrh mountains contain the most productive mines in the state, and although mining did not begin until 1870 it is now the leading industry.

Every range in the State however contains something in the way of minerals, and while gold and silver are found in one or more ranges, coal and other Hydrocarbons are found in others, while still in others lie the different metals herein before mentioned. The export value of gold, silver, copper and lead annually reaches the sum of twenty millions of dollars.

Silver, which is usually found with lead in the form of galena, is found in nearly every county in the State.

The most important mining belts are Park City, Eureka, Frisco, Bingham and Mercur. The largest silver producing mine in the U. S. is the Ontario, at Park City, which has paid in dividends nearly twenty millions of dollars.

The other large producing mines are the Silver King, Daily Daily West, also situated at Park City.

In the Eureka Tintic mining district are the Centennial Eureka, Bullion Beck and Mammoth mines, which have also contributed rich dividends. In the Mercur mines gold is the predominating mineral and the output reaches four hundred thousand dollars in gold.

In the Bingham mining district the main producing mines are the Highland Boy, United States, Dalton and Lark and Galena, which owing to the advance in copper are also pacing rich dividends.

Carbon County which was organized a few years ago by being cut off of Emery County is the largest producer of coal and Hydro Carbons of any County in the State. The coal fields practically cover the entire county and can be found in immense bodies in nearly every hill. In some places the coal has burned out leaving the ashes covered by the overhanging rock, but in most places the veins are easily uncovered. The Pleasant valley Coal Company of which William G. Sharp is manager, practically control the entire output of coal from this County. This company has mines at Winter Quarters, Clear Creek, Castle Gate and Sunnyside.

At Castle Gate are situated nearly one hundred coke ovens, which are now being augmented by one hundred more. The coal from Sunnyside being of good coking quality is brought to Castle Gate to be coked as the supply of water at Sunnyside is limited. Most of the work around the coke ovens is done by Italians, who are most faithful and attentive to this arduous task. In nearly every canyon outside of the Pleasant Valley Coal Company's territory are private mines that are worked for the local markets. Should this County ever be fortunate enough to secure another railroad so that the coal from these smaller mines could be shipped at reasonable rates, it would be equally as wealthy as those counties that boast of their silver, gold and copper. Probably the richest veins of coal in the State is in the mine at Scofield, and owned by the Union Pacific Railroad Co. This mine contains a vein averaging 27 feet in thickness, drains itself and needs no props to support the roof. While the rooms are being mined pillars of coal are left standing until the rooms are worked out and the miner then draws the pillars as he works back to the entry. This mine took fire seventeen years after and the old entry was walled in by masonry to smother the fire. It is believed now that the fire has been smothered. The last mine to be opened was the one at Clear Creek, which is now a heavy producer. The explosion of May 1st, took place in No. Four mine at Winter Quarters, being, situated about 2 miles above Scofield. The foreman William Parmley was one numbered among the dead.

Hardly any of the minerals of use to man, but what can be found in the depths of the mountains, while the bounteous soil being, watered by miles upon miles of irrigating, streams, responds with food products for the nourishment of man.

Vast herds of cattle roam the countless hills and the many herds of sheep that feed upon the mountain sides, contribute their vast wealth to the comforts of the whole nation, and these products are sought by the people that live in the larger cities of the east.

While the Counties of Carbon and Summit produce annually over one million of dollars in coal, they also produce cattle, horses and sheep in large numbers, and the mines of Asphalt, Gilsonite and other Hydro Carbons are now commencing to yield large amounts of these products. But while the miners in these counties are delving in the bowels of the earth for the many kinds of minerals, the former is plowing the bosom of mother earth and causing her to give forth the fruits and food products, of use to man.

Iron County, that now holds in embrace of her mountains, Iron ore enough to supply the earth for years and ages to come, will before long contribute her millions to this commonwealth. The iron ore in Iron County embraces a belt of mountain three miles wide by fifteen miles long, along which the ore outcrops several hundred feet in length and breadth.

If Texas, the greatest cattle producing state in the Union could multiply her product by many scores, still could the Great Salt Lake produce enough Salt to properly take care if her beef. The Great Salt Lake, is estimated to hold four hundred millions of tons of Salt in solution, and nature, alone can render it fit for consumption. Large reservoirs are built close to the lake and the water pumped into each until filled. Evaporation goes on from these reservoirs until the water has passed off, when a rich deposit of salt is gathered and taken to the refinery to be cleaned and prepared for shipment.

Rock salt that is placed upon the hillsides by the cattlemen and sheepman, for use of their herds and flocks is found in large quantities in Nephi, Juab Co., while gypsum in large deposits is close at hand.

In Millard County can tie found enough sulphur to manufacture matches for the world, for sulphur 98 per cent pure is manufactured there, tons upon tons.

Wasatch and Uintah Counties now mostly composed of Indian Reservation will when thrown open to settlement, contribute their millions, produced from mines of silver, gold and uintatite.

Utah, Cache and Weber Counties contributed the beautiful onyx wainscoting that adorn the halls of the City and County building in Salt Lake, while building stones, clays and kaolin are found in immense quantities. Along the Southwestern side of the lake is found lithographic stone second to none, while selenite of most perfect transparency, some crystals of which weigh 500 pounds is found in Wayne County. Among the minerals are found, zinc, cinnabar, bismith, cobalt, antimony, manganese, molybdenum, Alum, asbestos, borytes, borax, mica, niter, petroleum, phosphates, plumbago, agates, soda, talc.

But while the mountainous counties yield so magnificently, and employ thousands of men in their mines, still can the beautiful valleys produce food for them and to spare.

Davis County with her acres of gardens gives us fresh vegetables daily, and the county of Utah more than furnishes our tables with the choicest of fruit. Utah County furnishes the most fruit, but the counties of Box Elder and Weber make close seconds.

Peaches, pears, plums; prunes, apples, apricots, cherries, grapes and berries are exported in large quantities from these counties.

The raising of beets for sugar, has become one of the chief industries in the state. Sugar refineries at Lehi and Ogden use over five hundred thousand dollars worth of sugar beets annually. In the yield of potatoes per acre, Utah stands second to none, her yield per acre in 1896 being 203 bushels.

Lucerne, wheat, barley, sorghum, rye, corn and all kinds of vegetables are grown to advantage.

And not only in mining and agriculture is Utah taking, a front rank but its manufactories are of vast importance.

The people of this state have ever tried to foster home industries and from small beginnings the manufactories are now branching out and sending their products to the surrounding states. Every mountain stream is being utilized for power, and as the raw material is plentiful there is no reason that the great manufacturing interests should not rapidly spread so that their products can be seen in all marts of trade.

The beet sugar factory at Lehi is steadily advancing, and last year built a crushing mill for the beets at Springville, from where the juice is pumped through pipes to the refinery a few miles away.

The sugar from the Lehi factor received first prize at the World's Columbian Exposition.

Woolen mills are situated in different places, and the one at Provo has an output of $250,000 annually. Much of the woolen goods find a ready market in California and other states.

The shoe factory of the Z. C. M, I. at Salt Lake City finds employment for 200 operatives and has an output of over $100,000 annually.

Flour mills, canneries, lime kilns, charcoal ovens, coke ovens, machine shops, soap factories, saw mills, shingle mills, tanneries, etc., are situated in various parts of the State.

In the matter of education Utah is rapidly forging ahead, and the little dark incommodious school house is being replaced by more substantial buildings. In the cities, fine brick and stone buildings, with all the modern appliances for the health and comfort of the pupils have taken the place of the one story building of wood. And well may it be said that a finer lot of school buildings do not grace cities of the East of greater population.

Dr. John R. Parks is Superintendent of Education, and he with other prominent educators of the day form the State Board of Education.

In the district schools the County Superintendent of Schools is assisted by a County Board of Education, consisting of the Superintendent and two others, one of whom must be a practical teacher. The Superintendent is elected at the time the Trusties are voted for in July and is chosen for the term of two years, and he selects the two persons to form the County Board of Education .

By strict examination and culling out the poorer class of teachers the Counties in most instances have a good first class corps of teachers, who have been well drilled in educational methods and who are conscientious in performing their duties.

The district schools are divided into eight grades. Upon completing the eighth grade the pupils are examined by the County Board of Education and those found qualified are given a Diploma of Graduation. These Diplomas entitle them to enter nearly all of the higher institutions of learning without further examination. At least once every year an Institute is held at which some of the most prominent educators take part, and each teacher in the County is compelled to attend. By these institutes which are held monthly in the thickly populated districts the teachers are kept in touch with the educational progress of the day and cannot fail to be instructed and much benefitted thereby.

The State University at Salt Lake is the leading institution of learning and owing to the generous donation of the last Legislature it will soon have more commodious buildings.

The State University conducts a Normal School in connection with it. There is also a branch Normal established at Cedar City in Iron County.

The State Agricultural College is situated at Logan, and is quite popular among the youth who desire higher education.

The Brigham Young Academy at Provo is conducted for the education and benefit of all who wish to attend, but is particularly useful in educating the children of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latterday Saints. It conducts a course where missionaries are sent to learn the best methods of conducting Sunday Schools and the Young Men's Mutual Aid Society. Several hundreds of students attend this institution during the year.

Among the many other institutions of learning the following may be named: Brigham Young College, Logan; the Weber Stake Academy, and The Sisters School. Ogden; Rocky Mountain Seminary, All Hallows' College, Salt Lake Academy, and St. Mark's School of Salt Lake.

The Rio Grande Western Railway with its branches reach almost all parts of Utah, while the Union Pacific, Oregon Short Line, and Central Pacific cross the northern part of the State.



Source: History of the Scofield Mine Disaster, by J. W. Dilley, The Skelton Pub. Co., Provo, Utah, 1900.

Editors Note: The I.. O. O. F. were very active in raising money for the benefit of the widows and children along with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. This information is included for historical value, it does not mean the people of this project support these institutions.


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