CPT Considering Westward Expansion- Salt Lake City, Utah

CPT Considering Westward Expansion- Salt Lake City, Utah

Salt Lake City, the capital of Utah, is also the state’s most populous city. Although Salt Lake City has a population of slightly under 200,000, which is small in comparison to the nation’s largest cities, the combined Salt Lake-Ogden-Provo area has a more substantial population of over 2.4 million persons. The Salt Lake City region is the population hub of otherwise sparsely populated Utah. Approximately 82% of the state’s population resides in the Salt Lake-Ogden Provo area.

The surrounding terrain of Salt Lake City is diverse, with the city bordered by the Great Salt Lake to the northwest, the Wasatch Mountains to the east, the Oquirrh Mountains to the southwest, and Utah Lake to the south. The city lies within the Salt Lake Valley. But, despite being situated within a valley, the city has a substantial average elevation of slightly over 4,000 feet.

Salt Lake City and the state of Utah have an interesting history. The city was established in 1847 by Brigham Young and fellow Mormon settlers who traveled west from Illinois in a mass exodus. Salt Lake remains the world headquarters for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. However, now that the city has grown and diversified, less than 40% of the city’s citizens are members of the LDS Church. Yet, the percentage of LDS members is higher in the surrounding suburbs and within the entire state, which is 62% Mormon. Interestingly, Utah is the only state in the union with a single religious denomination constituting a majority of the population.

Salt Lake City is also diversified economically. The transportation, mining, oil, steel, health care, and finance industries are all well represented. Many large companies maintain their national or regional headquarters in Salt Lake City. In addition, Salt Lake is the center of government and utility employment in Utah and the city and surrounding mountain areas have a thriving tourism industry. The LDS Church is also a significant employer.

Several colleges lie within or around Salt Lake City. The University of Utah is located at the eastern edge of the city. Brigham Young University is 50 miles away in Provo. Weber State University is 40 miles north in Ogden.

During our trip, we first scouted the downtown, the city’s neighborhoods, and some industrial areas. Then, we took time to tour the Great Salt Lake, Temple Square, City Creek Center, and the University of Utah. We didn’t stay long at the Great Salt Lake. There really wasn’t much to see. Moreover, the ubiquitous disgusting odor that originates from the salt content and bacteria from plant and animal decay made the Lake a brief and unpleasant destination. On the other hand, Temple Square had some amazing architecture and notable history. After visiting Temple Square, we viewed the city by walking several miles from the downtown to the University of Utah campus. The neighborhoods we passed were very nice for an urban area. However, the University campus was disappointing, as the architecture was consistently bland. On the walk back we visited the impressive City Creek Center, which is the downtown’s retail, restaurant, and nightlife centerpiece.

 

 

The interior of The Tabernacle during a pipe organ concert.

The interior of The Tabernacle during a pipe organ concert.

The exterior of The Tabernacle.

The exterior of The Tabernacle.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The exterior of Assembly Hall. Photographed from the side of The Tabernacle. We see a nice juxtaposition of 19th century architecture with modern urban architecture.

The exterior of Assembly Hall. Photographed from the side of The Tabernacle. We see a nice juxtaposition of 19th century architecture with modern urban architecture.

 

The interior of The Tabernacle during a pipe organ concert.

The interior of The Tabernacle during a pipe organ concert.

 

A wide angle view of the interior of Assembly Hall.

A wide-angle view of the interior of Assembly Hall.

The exterior of Assembly Hall. Photographed from the South Visitor Center.

The exterior of Assembly Hall. Photographed from the South Visitor Center.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mark posing with Sister Huang from China. Sister Huang discussed her experience with religious restrictions in China. She told a compelling story of her family having to practice their religion in secret to avoid prosecution. She is presently in Salt Lake City on a 2-year mission. Then, she intends to return to China.

Mark posing with Sister Huang from China. Sister Huang discussed her experience with religious restrictions in China. She told a compelling story of her family having to practice their religion in secret to avoid prosecution. She is presently in Salt Lake City on a 2-year mission. Then, she intends to return to China.

 

 

A closeup view of the interior of Assembly Hall.

A closeup view of the interior of Assembly Hall.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Salt Lake Temple. Photographed from the Joseph Smith Memorial Building.

Salt Lake Temple. Photographed from the Joseph Smith Memorial Building.  The story of the construction of the immense granite edifice is tantamount to the building of a modern pyramid.

Sister Makovei from the Ukraine. She is passionate, perseverant, and polished. If she was selling software or starring in a television gospel program she would make a fortune. However, instead, she volunteers as a Mormon missionary.

Sister Makovei from the Ukraine. She is passionate, perseverant, and polished. If she was selling software or starring in a television gospel program she would make a fortune. However, instead, she volunteers as a Mormon missionary.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A model of Salt Lake Temple. The South Visitor Center contains this model which duplicates the exterior and interior of the Temple.

A model of Salt Lake Temple. The South Visitor Center contains this model which duplicates the exterior and interior of the Temple.

 

Salt Lake Temple. Photographed from behind The Tabernacle.

Salt Lake Temple. Photographed from behind The Tabernacle.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Temple Square Family Search Library and Genealogy Center. Free of charge, the LDS Church allows persons of any faith to use their search library to create a family tree.

The Temple Square Family Search Library and Genealogy Center. Free of charge, the LDS Church allows persons of any faith to use the extensive family history library to create a personal family tree.

A model of the inside of Salt Lake Temple. Since only literal card carrying LDS members can enter the temple, this was as close as I got to the inside.

A model of the inside of Salt Lake Temple. Since only literal card carrying LDS members can enter the Temple, this was as close as I got to the inside.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A map of downtown Salt Lake City.

A map of downtown Salt Lake City.

The Headquarters building of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. The sleek modern profile was a sharp contrast to the more ornamental structure of the Salt Lake Temple.

The Headquarters building of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. The sleek modern profile was a sharp contrast to the more ornamental structure of Salt Lake Temple.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The University of Utah campus.

The University of Utah campus.

Other than the football stadium, the University of Utah campus had no buildings with architecture worthy of a photo, which was very disappointing. However, the surrounding scenery from the Wasatch Mountains was stunning.

Other than the football stadium, the University of Utah campus had no buildings with architecture worthy of a photo, which was very disappointing. However, the surrounding scenery from the Wasatch Mountains was stunning.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The University of Utah campus.

The University of Utah campus.

Rice-Eccles Stadium on the University of Utah campus.

Rice-Eccles Stadium.  Home of the Utes.

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