Utah joined the Union on January 4, 1896. It had been a 49-year slog to statehood for Deseret, the Mormon settlement in the Desert. The size had been pared down, so it would not be the biggest state, incorporating parts of what is now Nevada, Arizona, Oregon, Idaho, Colorado and New Mexico. New capitals had been tried and cast aside (Fillmore, Utah). Democratic Party rule was broken when LDS church authorities went door-to-door, calling every other family to the Republican Party, and party parity. The Mormon Church abandoned polygamy, and adopted a state constitution that gave the vote to women.
Finally, Utah became the 45th state.
Happy birthday, Utah! 118 years old today.
- Utah’s very interesting path to statehood (constitutioncenter.org)
- Utah statehood story at Utah.com
- Utah Becomes a State, at ILoveHistory.com, from the Utah Division of State History
- Utah statehood discussed at PBS page for “The Mormons”
- “Utah: The struggle for statehood,” Production from KUED Channel 7, the PBS station operated by the University of Utah; curriculum guide (the entire production is available online for classroom use)
- Iowa Statehood, December 28, 1846 – Iowans, fly your flags today (timpanogos.wordpress.com)
- Texas Statehood, December 29, 1845 – 167years ago (timpanogos.wordpress.com)
- LDS scholars: “Mormon moment” could expand into cultural shift (denverpost.com)
- When Did Utah Become a State (wanttoknowit.com)
- Yeah; I missed Alaska’s statehood on January 3, and Georgia’s on January 2. Again. Cut my pay. My apologies — maybe next year. (Maybe not.)
Much of this material appeared here before; this is an annual event, after all.