Last week the Archives was researching the County’s history of providing burials for the indigent, and discovered that there was at least one official Salt Lake County Potter’s Field, located at the Taylorsville City Cemetery. The County wanted everyone to be properly provided for, no matter what their economic status was when they were alive.
Salt Lake County has provided this service since official County business started in 1852. The very first Salt Lake County ledger book, first entry dated April 1852, documents the earliest expenditures of the County, including roads and bridges, criminal convictions, salaries of employees, and includes a section on “Paupers.” The County provided paupers with lodging, food, clothing, and also burials. The image below is taken from the ledger book, and shows grave clothes and burial furnished in January of 1853, along with payment made to an individual for “keeping Benj. Houghton an orphan.”