Long Before the Twitter Universe….

Teletype machine at Whitmore Library, 1970s.

Before everyone got their latest news on the Internet, teletype machines were used in newspaper offices, police stations, radio & TV stations to keep them abreast of what was happening locally, nationally, and even worldwide.

Salt Lake County’s Whitmore Library had one installed in their main Information Department. Library patrons could stop by to peruse the daily postings, or call 943-INFO to have one of the “Information Librarians” give them the latest!

Teletype machine at Whitmore Library, circa late 1970s – early 1980s.

Blog entry contributed by our volunteer (and retired librarian extraordinaire), Ruby Cheesman.

Photographs from the Salt Lake County Library Historical Collection, 1939-2001. Salt Lake County Archives.

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Happy Holidays!

A peaceful and happy holiday season to all of our readers!

Please note: The Archives will be CLOSED for the holidays on December 23 – 27 and January 1.

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Remember When…?

Patrons at Salt Lake County’s Whitmore Library using a card catalog to locate materials, circa 1970s.

Some interesting facts about Salt Lake County’s Whitmore Library, located at 2197 East Fort Union Boulevard:

  • First opened in 1974.
  • Over 50,000 people visited the library in the first six weeks after it opened.
  • Demand was so great that an addition to the library was built in 1977.
  • It was built on land donated by Rich Whitmore, thus the name Whitmore Library.

Sources:

Campbell, Carolyn (1989). A Historical Retrospective of the Salt Lake County Library System in Celebration of Fifty Years of Public Service, 1939-1989.

Salt Lake County Library Historical Collection, 1939-2001. Salt Lake County Archives.

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Accidentally Artistic

8728 West State Highway (formerly known as 105 East State Highway), Copperton. Salt Lake County Tax Photographs, parcel 26-17-101-001. Photograph taken in 1973.

The Salt Lake County assessor working out in the field in 1973 apparently decided to take the required photograph of the house from their car when s/he assessed this property. We are left with an artistic image of this house located in Bingham Canyon, along with a view backwards down the tree lined street.

Although this image was chosen for this blog entry because of the unique photograph, the house turns out to have a very interesting history. According the Salt Lake County Tax Appraisal records, it was built in 1930 and was a residence owned by the Utah Copper Company. At the time of the above image in 1973, it was owned by The Roman Catholic Bishop of Salt Lake City and was utilized for “religious uses” and also housed a convent.

For those interested in additional history of this house, the image below shows it as it was in 1934.

8728 West State Highway,Copperton. Salt Lake County Tax Photographs, serial 41C-398. Photograph taken in 1934.
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Holiday Closure

Please note that the Salt Lake County Archives will be CLOSED on Thursday, November 28, and Friday, November 29, in observance of Thanksgiving.

Have a Happy Thanksgiving!

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Lost House: Bingham Canyon

Salt Lake County Tax Photographs, serial 49-12.

These lost houses were located in Bingham Canyon, in the Oquirrh Mountain range on the west side of the Salt Lake Valley. Copperfield was one of the towns that existed in the canyon that has since been overtaken by the copper mine. This photograph was taken in 1938 by the Salt Lake County Assessor.

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Some of our (Current and Past) Library Branches

For the last entry in this series highlighting the history of the Salt Lake County Library System, we are featuring several libraries. It was difficult to choose from the many great library branches, but we decided to grant reader requests and also show the history of some of the old branches.

Starting with a library branch that many readers may be familiar with: East Mill Creek Library. This branch opened in 1949 as a wing of a new fire station. It was remodeled in 1959. As a history of the Library System printed in 1989 notes: “The architecture at the front of the building is wide because it originally housed the driveway for the fire engines.”

Salt Lake County Library System History Scrapbook, 1949-1957.
East Mill Creek. Salt Lake County Library System History, 1938-1970.
Salt Lake County Library System History, 1938-1970.
Salt Lake County Library System History, 1938-1970.

A branch that you may not be as familiar with was the Arthur E. Peterson Library. The first Arthur E. Peterson branch opened in 1960 in a house on Sego Lily Drive in Sandy. Named after a member of the Library Board, the branch moved to a new building in December 1978 and operated until it was replaced in 1991 by the Sandy Library.

Branch on Sego Lily Drive. Salt Lake County Library System History, 1938-1970.

Another library with humble beginnings was the Calvin S. Smith branch, named after the superintendent of the Granite School District who helped to establish the Library System. He also served on the library board for 20 years. The library started in a store front in 1943, and was moved in to a surplus World War II PX store in 1947. It operated there until a new site opened in 1956.

Calvin S. Smith Library in 1953, located in a surplus WWII PX store building. 51 East Miller Street. Salt Lake County Library System Scrapbook, 1949-1957.

Located in a canyon on the far western side of the Salt Lake Valley, the Bingham Library was started in the city hall in 1920 by the Women’s Civic Club. In 1939, the Salt Lake County Library System took over the library and in 1944 moved it to a large store building on Main Street in Bingham Canyon.

Salt Lake County Library System History Scrapbook, 1944.

Sources:

Campbell, Carolyn (1989) A Historical Retrospective of the Salt Lake County Library System in Celebration of Fifty Years of Public Service, 1939-1989.

Salt Lake County Library Scrapbooks, 1944-1959. Salt Lake County Archives.

Tyler, Ruth Vine. (1970) Salt Lake County Library System History, 1938-1970.

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