Page 11

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Title Is Utah Sahara Bound?
Subject Agriculture--Utah; Land use--Utah
Description The 11th Annual Frederick William Reynolds Lecture.
Creator Cottam, Walter Pace, 1894-
Publisher Extension Division, University of Utah
Date 1947-02-19
Date Digital 2008-05-29
Type Text
Format image/jpeg
Digitization Specifications Original scanned on Epson Expression 10000XL flatbed scanner and saved as 400 ppi uncompressed tiff. Display images generated in PhotoshopCS and uploaded into CONTENTdm Aquisition Station.
Resource Identifier,458
Source LD5526 .U8 n.s. v.37 no.11
Language eng
Relation Digital reproduction of "Is Utah Sahara Bound?," J. Willard Marriott Library Special Collections
Rights Digital Image Copyright University of Utah
Metadata Cataloger Seungkeol Choe; Ken Rockwell
ARK ark:/87278/s6w66hr0
Setname uu_fwrl
Date Created 2008-07-29
Date Modified 2009-03-13
ID 319731
Reference URL

Page Metadata

Title Page 11
Description EVIDENCE OF VEGETATIONAL CHANGE 11 Salt Lake City now stands. In this letter there is an interesting reference to sagebrush.* "Timber," they observed, "can hardly be said to be scarce in this region for there is rarely enough of it to be named and sage is as rare as timber, so that if you want to raise sage and greasewood here you had better bring the seeds with you from the mountains. In many places the grass, rushes, etc., are ten feet high but no mire. Feed abundant and of the best quality." Orson Pratt's20 journal contains the following quotation of his impression of Salt Lake Valley on July 21, 1847: "A great variety of green grass and very luxuriant covered the bottom for miles, where the soil was sufficiently damp; but in other places, although the soil was good, yet the grass had nearly dried up for want of moisture." It is well to note that Pratt is perfecty clear in distinguishing between the green grassy meadows of the undrained bottom lands and the climatically supported bunchgrass of the upland valley plains which by late July had reached full maturity. Upland grasses are today dry by the 21st of July. Late in 1849 Captain Howard Stansbury25 reached Salt Lake Valley for the purposes of surveying the Great Salt Lake and of locating a good route to this valley. His only scientific aid was Lt. J. W. Gunnison. In Gunnison's Book13 entitled The Mormons he describes the Salt Lake Valley thus: "The valleys afford perennial pasturage, but the hillsides furnish bunchgrass only during the warm months of the year. It seeds in the summer, and is germinated by the autumnal rains, and grows under the snowy covering of winter." On November 6, 1849, Stansbury25 camped in Tooele Valley, "In the prairie near a noble spring of fresh, cold water, with abundance of excellent grass and an extensive grove of large willows for fuel. . . . This valley is called 'Tuilla Valley' by the Mormons, and forms an excellent pasturage for numerous herds of cattle wintered here by them under the charge of keepers. The grass is very abundant and numerous springs are found on both sides of [the valley]." This account of grass in Tooele Valley by Stansbury finds support in the February 19, 1942 issue of The Transcript Bulletin, a bi-weekly county newspaper published at Tooele, Utah. There appears here an obituary column for Mr. Philip Francis De LaMare, the last male pioneer of Tooele, who had died at the age of 92 years. One of the paragraphs of this obituary reads as follows: "Mr. De LaMare often related that on his arrival in Tooele as a boy he remembered a valley full of high waving grass, a veritable herder's paradise, and said he, it was not an uncommon happening for stockmen to be unable to find their animals because of being lost in this high grass which spread over the valley." Today Tooele Valley is known as Utah's dust bowl. Grasses are particularly absent in all of the vegetative types, and thousands of acres support little else than Russian thistle and other annuals. In 1859, twelve years after the Mormons arrived in Salt Lake Valley, Captain J. H. Simpson,24 stationed at Camp Floyd with Johnston's Army, was commissioned to survey a postal route west *Unpublished letter from L. D. S. Archives, Salt Lake City.
Format image/jpeg
Identifier 011-RNLT-CottamWP_Page 11.jpg
Source Original Manuscript: Is Utah Sahara Bound? by Walter P. Cottam.
Setname uu_fwrl
Date Created 2008-07-29
Date Modified 2008-07-29
ID 319700
Reference URL