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Utah, US (Population: 2,550,063)

State Capitol: Salt Lake City

Major Cities: West Valley city, Provo, Sandy, Orem, Ogden, West Jordan, Layton, Taylorsville, St. George

State Nickname/Motto: The Beehive State/"Life Elevated"

Statehood Granted: January 4, 1896

History: In 1847 when the first pioneers arrived, Utah was still Mexican territory. As a consequence of the Mexican-American War, the land became the territory of the United States upon the signing of the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, February 2, 1848. The treaty was ratified by the United States Senate on March 10. In 1850, the Utah Territory was created with the Compromise of 1850, and Fillmore was designated the capital. In 1856, Salt Lake City replaced Fillmore as the territorial capital. Beginning in 1865, Utah's Black Hawk War developed into the deadliest conflict in the territory's history. Chief Antonga Black Hawk died in 1870, but fights continued to break out until additional federal troops were sent in to suppress the Ghost Dance of 1872. The war is unique among Indian Wars because it was a three-way conflict, with mounted Timpanogos Utes led by Antonguer Black Hawk exploited by federal and LDS authorities.

Geography: Highest point: Kings Peak 13,528 feet. Utah is one of the Four Corners states, and is bordered by Idaho and Wyoming in the north; by Colorado in the east; at a single point by New Mexico to the southeast at the Four Corners Monument; by Arizona in the south; and by Nevada in the west. It covers an area of 84,899 square miles. One of Utah's defining characteristics is the variety of its terrain. Running down the center of the state is the Wasatch Range, which rises to heights of about 12,000 feet above sea level. Portions of these mountains receive more than 500 inches of snow each year and are home to world-renowned ski resorts, made popular by the light, fluffy snow, which is considered good for skiing. In the northeastern section of the state, running east to west, are the Uinta Mountains.

Ethnic Diversity: One Race (98.5%), White (89.8%), Black or African American (0.8%), American Indian and Alaska Native (1.2%), Asian (1.9%), Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander (0.6%), Some other race (4.2%), Two or more races (1.5%), Hispanic or Latino (10.9%)*

Famous State People:

  • Maurice Abravanel (1903 - 1993) Music Director of the Utah Symphony.
  • Danny Ainge (1959 - ) BYU Basketball star. Former NBA player/coach.
  • Roseanne Barr (1952 - ) Comedian and actress of television’s Roseanne; born in Salt Lake City.
  • Reva Beck Bosone (1895 - 1983) Utah's first woman member of Congress, rights activist.
  • John Moses Browning (1855 - 1926) Gun Maker.
  • Nolan Kay Bushnell (1915 - ) Computer programmer who invented the first coin-operated video game; born in Ogden.
  • Robert LeRoy Parker “Butch Cassidy” (1887-1915?) Famous outlaw that robbed banks and trains of the Old West; born in Beaver.
  • Marriner Eccles (1890 - 1977) Built First Security Corp., helped end Great Depression.
  • Philo Farnsworth (1906 - 1971) Inventor of the television.
  • Edwin Jacob (Jake) Garn (1932 - ) Senator, Astronaut.
  • Orrin Hatch ( 1934 - ) U.S. Senator.
  • Jon Huntsman Sr. (1937 - ) Philanthropist and state's most successful entrepreneur.
  • David Abbott "Ab" Jenkins (1883 - 1956) Driving his "Mormon Meteor", Jenkins set numerous world automobile speed records on Utah's Bonneville Salt Flats between 1932 and 1956.
  • Karl Malone (1963 - ) Utah Jazz Basketball Star.
  • J. Willard Marriott (1900 - 1985) Founder of the Marriott restaurant and hotel chain. Also founded the A&W restaurant chain.
  • Dale Murphy (1956 - ) Baseball player who played for the Atlanta Braves.
  • Donny Osmond (1957 - ) and Marie Osmond (1959 - ) Singers and dancers that starred in the Donny and Marie Show, brother and sister; both born in Ogden.
  • Robert Redford (1937 - ) Actor and founder of the Sundance Institute.
  • Wallace Stegner (1909 - 1993) Author.
  • Reed Smoot (1862 - 1941) First Mormon elected to U.S. Senate.
  • Brigham Young (1801 - 1877) President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons) that brought the first white settlers to Utah and founded Salt Lake City; born in Whittingham, born in Vermont.
  • Steve Young (1961 - ) Football quarterback who helped the San Francisco 49ers win three Super Bowl championships; born in Salt Lake City.

  • Major Colleges/Universities: Brigham Young University, College of Eastern Utah., Dixie State College of Utah, LDS Business College, Neumont University, Provo College, Salt Lake Community College, Snow College, Southern Utah University, Stevens-Henager College, University of Utah, Utah College of Massage Therapy, Utah State University, Utah Valley State College, Weber State University, Westminster College

    State Parks: Anasazi Indian State Park, Antelope Island State Park, Bear Lake State Park, Camp Floyd State Park, Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park, Dead Horse Point State Park, Deer Creek State Park, East Canyon State Park, Edge Of the Cedars State Park, Escalante State Park, Fremont Indian State Park, Goblin Valley State Park, Goosenecks State Park, Great Salt Lake State Park, Green River State Park, Gunlock State Park, Historic Union Pacific Rail Trail State Park, Huntington State Park, Hyrum State Park, Iron Mission State Park, Jordanelle State Park, Kodachrome State Park, Millsite State Park, Otter Creek State Park, Palisade State Park, Piute State Park, Quail Creek State Park, Red Fleet State Park, Rockport State Park, Sand Hollow State Park, Scofield State Park, Snow Canyon State Park, Starvation State Park, Steinaker State Park, Territorial Statehouse, Utah Field House of Natural History, Utah Lake State Park, Wasatch Mountain State Park, Willard Bay State Park, Yuba Lake State Park

    Misc: The state of Utah relies heavily on income from tourists and travelers taking advantage of the state's ski resorts and natural beauty, and thus the need to "brand" Utah and create an impression of the state throughout the world has led to several state slogans, the most famous of which being "The Greatest Snow on Earth," which has been in use in Utah officially since 1975 (although the slogan was in unofficial use as early as 1962) and now adorns nearly 50% of the state's license plates. In 2001, Utah Governor Mike Leavitt approved a new state slogan, "Utah! Where Ideas Connect," which lasted until March 10, 2006, when the Utah Travel Council and the office of Governor Jon Huntsman announced that "Life Elevated" would be the new state slogan. Utah is the setting of or the filming location for many books, films, and television series.

    *U.S. Census - 2005