Category Archives: Native American

What’s New in the Mormon Pioneer Heritage Area?

The Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area Restoration projects have been plentiful over the last decade. You may not be aware of the various projects that have been completed inside the boundaries of the MPNHA. While a majority of the work has been on restoring and preserving the history of early Mormon pioneer settlers of the area, there has also been significant effort given to telling the stories of the people who shaped the unique landscapes of the MPNHA.

Over the past 12 years, the MPNHA has assisted 26 communities and seen the revitalization of  45 historic buildings/areas throughout the corridor in the telling of the Mormon pioneer story.

To date, more than 130 different MPNHA grants have facilitated the restoration of historic buildings across the heritage area, breathed new life into towns as part of main street revitalization efforts, and provided educational opportunities, including the MPHNA’s own TV show “Discovery Road” and the book “Legends, Lore & True Tales in Mormon Country,” for members of local communities and visitors to experience the lives of those early pioneers.

The Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area restoration projects were accompanied by educational programs, and historic sites, the MPNHA has contributed in the development of an agritourism/equestrian center, 3 veterans memorials (in Gunnison, Loa and Salina), trails and biking paths, three museums, commemorative kiosks and pavilions, a railroad village, and interpretive visitors centers, including the Hole-in-the-Rock Interpretive Center in Escalante.

Several of the projects have been recipients of heritage restoration and other awards, while the MPNHA itself was named “Best of State in Heritage Tourism” in 2017.

The MPNHA is committed to continuing its efforts, which have borne tremendous fruit in the communities it covers and greatly enhanced the telling of the tale of the magnificent Mormon colonization of much of the West, long into the future.

Perfect Ideas for Christmas Gift-Giving for History Buffs Straight From Santa

Do you have someone on your Christmas List for whom it is difficult to find the proper gift?  Santa Claus himself has partnered with the Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area to give stumped shoppers some ideas.

Legends, Lore and True Tales in Mormon Country is a compilation of stories of strength of the pioneers in Central and Southern Utah – many of which are not very well-known.  Deseret News Review

Press Release – Legends, Lore and True Tales in Mormon Country

Sanpete Messenger article about Legends, Lore and True Tales in Mormon Country (Page A5)

Journal article from the Utah Historical Quarterly about Legends, Lore and True Tales in Mormon Country

Purchase from Acadia Publishing ($21.00)

Purchase from Eborn Books (also watch for signing events)

For the best prices, visit Amazon ($14.72 paperback or $9.99 Kindle) with free shipping for orders over $35 or Walmart with free shipping over $50

Events – Past (Bookmark for upcoming events)

Book Signing at Kings English Bookshop

Meet the Authors – Eborn Books

Follow Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area’s board – Legends, Lore and True Tales in Mormon Country on Pinterest.

DVD Cover Blackhawk War

Explore The Blackhawk War, with an informative and entertaining DVD, available for purchase from the Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area for $10, please contact the Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Information at 801-699-5065 for more information about and to order this hour-long documentary by Discovery Road.

Press Release – Blackhawk War DVD

For those looking for more, Lincoln and Mormon Country, from the Looking for Lincoln in Illinois book series, in a partnership with Looking for Lincoln, a National Heritage Area in Illinois, is a unique gift.

Purchase from Amazon ($19.99 paperback and Kindle) with free shipping for orders over $35

“The Soul of the Native American Artist” to share Native American Perspectives, Heritage

The Soul of the Native American Artist” to share Native American Perspectives, Heritage

MORMON PIONEER NATIONAL HERITAGE AREA (MPNHA)

“The Soul of the Native American Artist” to share Native American perspectives, heritage

Linda Petersen Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area

801-554-7513

Email: linda@bpmedia.com

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: October 16, 2015

RICHFIELD—The Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area (MPNHA) will showcase Native Indian artist David K. John in a special two-day event, “The Soul of the Native American Artisan,” at the Richfield City Building, 75 East Center, on Friday, Oct 23 and Saturday, Oct 24.

This free event is open to the public from noon to 5 p.m. on Oct 23 and from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Oct. 24.

John, a member of the Navajo tribe, is a 1982 Richfield High School graduate who has maintained many ties to the Richfield area. Through his art, John will share with participants the culture and heritage of American Indians, in particular the Navajo tribe.

With this program, the MPNHA seeks to share with the public John’s unique perspectives regarding the natural environment, the earth, cosmos, animal life, aquatic life, dwelling structures and his connection to a deeply holistic spiritual life.

Throughout the event, interactive discussions with the public will be led by project director Emery Polelonema, John and locally known archeologist Craig Harmon, who will give scientific and historical context to John’s native art impressions.

Along with the exhibit and discussions, from noon to 3 on Saturday, Oct. 24, Navajo students from Richfield will share an artistic display of dance.

“We want to educate the public about who we are as Native Artwork in this press release are some examples of the art that will be at the event.

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Americans and what we can contribute to the arts and humanities,” said Polelonema, a Native American and an official with the Six County Association of Governments.

“In popular culture, there is a misconception of the Native American artist as a ‘blanket Indian,’ one who returns to the reservation, who cannot stay out in the mainstream,” he said. “That is a complete misnomer.”

Richfield Mayor David Ogden will speak at the opening of the event at noon on Oct. 23. “We are really excited about David K. John coming back to the Sevier Valley,” Ogden said. “He has some amazing talents which he has put to use and has created beautiful pictures of the world and of Native Americans.”

“We feel so fortunate to have him come back and share it with us here in Richfield. We encourage everyone in the area to come enjoy his artwork and success.”

Organizers hope that this exhibit/showcase will supplement and enhance existing Utah pioneer history with Native American historical information and promote an understanding and appreciation for the rich Native American heritage of the area.

“The Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area’s Management Plan places great emphasis on the rich heritage of Native Americans. Their deep appreciation of our mountains, streams and landscape constitutes the essence of what we stand for as a heritage area,” MPNHA Director Monte Bona said.

“We are especially pleased that our partners at the Utah Humanities Council are participating in this important program.”

This project is sponsored by the Utah Humanities Council and the MPNHA. For more information, contact project director Emery Polelonema at 435-201-9603 or MPNHA director Monte Bona at 801-699-5065.

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About the MPNHA: The Mormon Pioneer Heritage Area is a federally designated area of central and southern Utah running along the beautiful and historic U.S. Highway 89 — including the All-American Road Utah State Route 12, and Capitol Reef Scenic Byway Utah State Route 24, which both intersect with U.S. 89 and together form the MPNHA’s Boulder Loop. The area includes the counties of Sanpete, Sevier, Piute, Wayne, Garfield and Kane.

About the Utah Humanities Council: The works to empower Utahns to improve their communities through active engagement in the humanities. To accomplish this, through its programs and grants it partners with individuals and groups across the state who want to put humanities ideas into actions that have a positive impact on their communities.

PRESIDENT ABRAHAM LINCOLN AND THE MORMONS SHARE A RICH HISTORY

Bryon C. Andreason author of Looking For Lincoln in Illinois series has a new addition to his collection with his newly published book, Looking For Lincoln In Illinois; Lincoln And Mormon Country .  This new book introduces the rich history of the early Mormon leaders and Abraham Lincoln.  This edition contains over thirty amazing stories that connect President Lincoln with the Mormon community and members.

Lincoln and Mormon Country by Bryon C. Andreasen
Lincoln and Mormon Country by Bryon C. Andreasen

It is an honor for the Mormons and the Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area to be recognized by the Looking for Lincoln Heritage Coalition and the Abraham Lincoln National Heritage Area with the publication of Andreason’s latest addition to his popular series.

Andreason amply tells of the great generation of the nineteenth century pioneers and of the Latter-day Saints,  in Nauvoo to the state capital of Springfield.  Included in this publication are maps, historic photos, Mormon expeditions, descriptive battles, interesting events of his travels, the now famous inns in which Lincoln visited.   Also included in the edition are Brigham Young and various Mormon apostles of the time.
The book also includes colorful and engaging looks at key figures such as Brigham Young, various Mormon apostles, and more. Anyone inspired by Lincoln, as well as Mormon and Illinois history enthusiasts, will appreciate this look back at a long-past, but not forgotten, landscape.

 

Those with any interest in the history of the nineteenth century history, Abraham Lincoln, and Mormon history will sure be pleased with his latest publication.

Legends, Lore, & True Tales in Mormon Country Edited by Monte Bona
Legends, Lore, & True Tales in Mormon Country Edited by Monte Bona

There is another interest that the Looking For Lincoln and the Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area have in common, it is the recently published book Legends, Lore& True Tales In Mormon Country.  This insightful book was edited by Monte Bona, Director of the Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area.

It contains contributions from authors Christian Probasco, Steven J. Clark, Eileen Hallet Stone, James Nelson, Jack C. Billings, Ed Meyer, Jack Monnet, Jason Friedman, and Shirley Bahlmann. These gifted authors have brought to life the exciting life and times in the Mormon Country.

Interesting and beloved stories of Brigham Young, Hiram Bebee, Butch Cassidy, the Sundance Kid, Maude Adams, Chief Walkara, Chief Black Hawk , and Zane Grey’s ghost and numerous other stories. This book is a wonderful addition to your library, our family truly enjoys learning between myth or fact in our new home.

These books are a great Christmas gift for all that have an interest in the Mormon Country, and in President Abraham Lincoln.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mt. Pleasant Hub City Days 4th of July 2015

Each year Mt. Pleasant hosts the Hub City Days in the Little Denmark District.  The events surrounding the 4th of July attract around 10,000 spectators in a small rural setting of 2,700 residents.

Flag in the 4th of July '15 parade
Photo Courtesy of Randy Wootton

The presentation of the flag brings everyone to their feet.

Mayor David Blackham driving vintage Ford tractor pulling the City Council Members in the 4th of July Parade
Mayor David Blackham driving vintage Ford tractor pulling the City Council Members in the 4th of July Parade. Photo Courtesy of Randy Wootton

This year the citizens were treated with the Mt. Pleasant Mayor, David Blackman driving his vintage 1949 Ford Tractor pulling the City Council Members.  There of course, is candy a plenty thrown from the various floats to the crowd.

To kick off the festivities, the PRCA, Professional Rodeo Cowboy Association sponsors a rodeo on the 3rd and 4th of July.   The city of Mt. Pleasant hosts a Rodeo Fun Night

—Games on Horseback at Mt Pleasant Rodeo – Free admission for a variety of games for children and adults to enjoy on the 2nd of July.  Here you will get in the spirit of the cowboy life in Sanpete County with horse games, calf pull, stick horse races, hide races, barrel riding, and musical tires on horse back.  The video clips of the festivities courtesy of Randy Wootton.

On the 4th of July the day starts Breakfast in the Park Cancer Fun Run: $5—Free t-shirts. Tennis Tournament—High School Tennis courts. Doubles & singles  Book Sale, chess & checkers on Library Lawn. Children’s Parade—Mammoth Parade—Mt. Pleasant City Park: Entertainment, Craft/Food Booths all day  Free games, prizes & wagon rides in park by Youth City Council “Best Pie in Mt. Pleasant” contest—$100 prize—. Hub City Rodeo—Mt. Pleasant Rodeo Arena (Mutton Bustin’).   This year, there were 90 entries for the parade.  Following the rodeo fireworks in the park.

2015-Hub-City-Days-Rodeo-194x300

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Mountain Man Rendezvous is in the city park with muzzle loader shoot-outs, exhibits, trading, displays, candy cannon explosions, tomahawk and knife throwing contests, frying pan tossing, dutch oven cook off, kids games, native American dancers, historical reenactments and more. Participants camp out in authentic teepees and wall tents during the three day event. Spectators are always welcome.

 

Memorial Day Honoring Family and Traditions

mt. Pleasant Cemetery graves

Memorial Day has always been a family tradition.  No matter where we moved,  we always went to the family cemetery to honor our family.  Decorating the graves was a responsibility my father would say “someday you will take on this responsibility and teach it to your children.”

Well, here we are as grandparents taking our wonderful grandchildren to the graves of family members to honor them.  What I saw this year was a wonderful example of the past and the present.  Grandchildren reverently placing flowers on the graves of family members that are six and seven generations past.

This year there was more joy as we spent the day together talking to the children, telling them stories.  We focused on the living and the funny family stories of the past.  We still missed those who have preceded us, but it was a sweet remembering this year.  What does bring tears to my eyes is the respect, reverence, and the United States flags flying high to honor our fallen military men and women.

Cadets, alumni and volunteers from St. Thomas Academy worked with Fort Snelling National Cemetery staff to put up hundreds of American flags ahead of the Memorial Day weekend,  on Wednesday,  May 21,  2014 . (Pioneer Press: Scott Takushi)
Cadets, alumni and volunteers from St. Thomas Academy worked with Fort Snelling National Cemetery staff to put up hundreds of American flags ahead of the Memorial Day weekend, on Wednesday, May 21, 2014 . (Pioneer Press: Scott Takushi)

There is truly something amazing beyond description that seeing lanes lined with the United States flying.  I am proud to be an American, I am proud that my father was a WWII Veteran.  I am proud that my husband was a Viet Nam Veteran.  I am proud of all those who have offered their lives for the freedom our country represents.  I am proud of those who continue to fight for our freedom, and pray that someday they will all come home.  I pray that we will be able to continue to represent a land of opportunity, one where we all live in peace and in times of peril, there will continue to be brave men and women who feel as deeply as those of past days and take their ranks in the military.

I pledge Allegiance to the flag of the United States of America; and to the Republic for which it stands, one nation under God, indivisible, with Liberty and Justice for all.

Mt Pleasant flags

I am so grateful that the cemeteries in the Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area, no matter how small that they might be, flew the United States of American Flag proudly for those who gave their lives for all that this great nation!

 

Legends, Lore and True Tales in Mormon Country (American Legends) By Monte Bona

 

legends lore and true tales in mormon country

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Monte Bona, along with the collaborative efforts of talented professionals have given us an authentic view of those brave men, women and children who left their homes, family, wealth, and country to establish the communities in South Central Utah.

The powerful stories of the early settlers in the region that is now identified by the Congressional designation as the Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area, are touching, informative, and compelling

These pioneers certainly left a legacy that illustrates a structure that was steeped in  codes of conduct, traditions, and  principles that everyone embraced for the sole purpose of succeeding in a somewhat hostile environment.  Their stories come to life as you read of their inventiveness, cooperation,  conscientiousness, and pure resilience.     You will also be moved stories of with miracles that occurred..

Many may be interested to learn that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, or Mormons were not the only secular group that assisted with the settling  of Utah.   Jewish settlements, and contributions of a Presbyterian Minister, were instrumental.   There were great sacrifices, large doses of humility, and traditional morals that were all combined to make their efforts a true success.

I have a great appreciation for the time intensive work completed by Monte Bona that has gone into producing Legends, Lore and True Tales in Mormon Country (American Legends).  It is commendable that such an undertaking has been made to tell their stories. What a great job he has done!

The pictures are an added bonus, they help to recreate the trials, tribulations and the triumphs of  the early pioneers.  Mr. Bona has done a tremendous job in compiling this must have book for those who seek to find their family history, and a great resource for future generations.  Without a doubt this is a book that you will read, reread, share, and  retell the stories, legends, lore and true tales to everyone.  I highly recommend this book to all who seek the true tales in Mormon Country.

 

“ONE OF THE NATURAL WONDERS OF THE WORLD” ZION NATIONAL PARK

Natural Wonders of the World: America’s top five National Parks

Zion National Park Photo Courtesy of the National Park Service
Zion National Park Photo Courtesy of the National Park Service

There is never a better time to begin your Zion National Park Adventure.  As one of the Natural Wonders of the World: America’s top five National Parks; it is on many lists of must see places, including National Geographic Top Ten National Park Landmarks.  There are numerous reasons to visit this world wonder and all of them will fascinate the imagination and leave you breathless at the magnificent views and experience in the park.

Zion National Park Visitors Center Photo Courtesy of National Park Service
Zion National Park Visitors Center Photo Courtesy of National Park Service

Zion Canyon Visitor Center:

Here you will get maps and permits you will need for your exploration of the canyon. Rangers are available to assist you and answer any questions  you may have. There are two  main campgrounds,  gift shops, restaurants, and other attractions.  Here you will find The Watchman trail head.  The towering Watchman, stands some 2500ft/1995m above the canyon floor to keep watch over and protect the canyon.

Zion Museum:

You will certainly want to visit the Zion Museum to learn the creation of Zion Canyon.  Millions of years of erosion left these magnificent Navajo sandstone towers and cliffs. Zion Canyon is but one of the steps in the Grand Staircase that begins at the Grand Canyon and ends at Bryce Canyon.

Court of the Patriarchs Zion National Park
Court of the Patriarchs Zion National Park

Court of the Patriarchs:

With just a short hike, you will come to the base of three sandstone monoliths.  These are named after the ancient old testament patriarchs: Abraham, Issac, and Jacob. From here you can access the Sand Bench Trail, which will take you along the Virgin River to the Zion Lodge.

Zion Lodge Photo Courtesy of the Zion Lodge
Zion Lodge Photo Courtesy of the Zion Lodge

Zion Lodge:

The Zion Lodge lies in the heart of Zion Canyon.  Here you will find gift shops and food service. 

Upper Emerald Pools NPhoto Courtesy of National Park Servide
Upper Emerald Pools Photo Courtesy of National Park Service

Emerald Pools Trailhead:

The trail head to the three Emerald Pools begins at the Zion Lodge.  You can see the reflection of the surrounding cliffs as you look across these crystal clear pools.

 

Angels Landing Photo Courtesy of National Park Servide
Angels Landing Photo Courtesy of National Park Service

The Grotto- Angels Landing & West Rim Trailhead:

One of the most spectacular hikes in Zion,  begins here.  This hike up to Angels Landing is an experience that stops those faint hearted and with a fear of heights.  The 2,000 foot shear cliffs that drop off from both sides of the narrow trail, require a good deal of steal in the bravery department, as you approach the top.  Although this is a psychological and physical test, the view of the canyon floor from the heights above  is certainly well worth the hike.

Weeping Rock Photo Courtesy of National Park Servide
Weeping Rock Photo Courtesy of National Park Service

Weeping Rock- Observation Point Trailhead:

An amazing sight is that of the porous Navajo sandstone monoliths.  Water pervades down through the sandstone and as it reaches impermeable layers that allow the water to flow horizontal until it seeps to the face of the cliffs.  Thus is the case of the Weeping Rock.

Big Bend Photo Courtesy of National Park Servide
Big Bend Photo Courtesy of National Park Service

Big Bend – The Organ:

Big Bend will  have you standing at the base of a 2,000ft/6,010m shear cliff on the north side of Angels Landing.   A 1,100ft Monolith “Organ” (resembling a pipe organ) stands here at the edge of the Virgin River.

Temple of Sinawava Photo Courtesy of National Park Servide
Temple of Sinawava Photo Courtesy of National Park Service

Temple of Sinawava- Riverside Walk-

Is the end of the canyon road, and the beginning of the Riverside trail.  It winds along the banks of the Virgin River which  ends at “The Narrows.”

The Narrows Photo Courtesy of the National Park Service
The Narrows Photo Courtesy of the National Park Service

The Narrows

Is a one way 16 mile hike through the narrow canyons of the Virgin River.  The towering steep cliffs over 1,000 feet high surround you.

The Great White Throne Photo Courtesy of National Park Servide
The Great White Throne Photo Courtesy of National Park Service

The Riverside Trail

will allow you to go as far as you wish.  The many famous Zion Park photographs are taken in Zion Canyon.  These include the Patriarchs, the Great White Throne, and scenes along the Virgin River.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Outdoor Activities include:

  • Biking
  • Camping
  • Canyoneer
  • Climbing
  • Golf
  • Hiking
  • Horseback Riding
  • Off Road / ATV
  • Ski
  • Snowboarding

Share your favorite story and photos, upload your photos on your social media #findyourpark #findyourstory.

CAPITOL REEF NATIONAL PARK

Sunset from the Sunset Point area at Capitol Reef Ray Mathis/NPS
Sunset from the Sunset Point area at Capitol Reef
Ray Mathis/NPS

Capitol Reef National Park, in the Boulder Loop District of the Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area is all that one would expect from a visit.  There is an abundance of  history of the Fremont People, the earliest dwellers who were farmers and hunters, dating back to 700 AD.  The area being fertile land due to the lakes and streams made for abundant hunting and fishing, and rich farmland.

Their heritage relates them to the Ancestral Puebloans but they disappeared from the area about 1250 AD.  Fortunately, these Native Americans left their records on the rock and the canyon walls.

Native Americans and Sacred Water Discovery Road
Photo Courtesy of the National Park Service

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In the 1600’s the Paiute Indians took over the lands.  Here the Paiute’s enjoyed all the riches that the area possessed.  In the 1800’s the first pioneers located this rich land and began to establish a settlement.  By 1872, the territory was no longer an uncharted area, it had been officially documented and explored

Around the 1920’s Joseph S. Hickman and Ephraim Portman wanted to preserve the natural beauty of the area so they came together to create the “Wayne Wonderland Club” to preserve and promote the area.

Fruita, Utah in 1931
Fruita, Utah in 1931

Hickman was elected to the Utah State legislature, and 16 acres in the Fruita township were designated to the status of a Utah State Park.  In 1937 it reached the status as a national monument by President Franklin D. Roosevelt.  It received its national park status in 1971 under the Richard M. Nixon Presidency.

Pinyon
Pinyon Photo Courtesy of the National Park Service

Capitol Reef National Park supports  an assortment of distinctive ecosystems.  The 900 species of flora and fauna, the animals, the geology, and the environmental features make the park so diverse.

Mountain Lion Photo Courtesy of the National Park Service
Mountain Lion Photo Courtesy of the National Park Service

Most popular sites and unique formations:

The Waterpocket Fold is the most distinguishing feature in the park, a 100-mile long classic monocline uplifted 7000 feet on the west side.

Waterpocket Fold aerial view Photo Courtesy of the National Park Service
Waterpocket Fold aerial view Photo Courtesy of the National Park Service

Capitol Dome is a massive white sandstone formation that resembles the U.S. Capitol building. The park was partly named for this landmark.

Chimney Rock is a towering 400-foot-tall sandstone pillar, located three miles west of the visitor center off Highway 24 and accessible via a short hiking trail.

Hickman Bridge is a huge natural arch spanning 133 feet wide and 125 feet tall. The arch is named after Joseph S. Hickman, an early advocate for Capitol Reef’s preservation.

The Castle Photo Courtesy of the National Park Service
The Castle Photo Courtesy of the National Park Service

The Castle, an impressive craggy sandstone formation visible from Highway 24.

Cassidy Arch, a pink Kayenta sandstone arch spanning 50 feet, above the Grand Wash. Accessible by a moderate three-mile round trip hike.

The Bentonite Hills are round formations with a checkerboard facade, located 9 miles from River Ford.

Bentonie Hills Photo Courtesy of the National Park Service
Bentonie Hills Photo Courtesy of the National Park Service

Temple of the Sun, Temple of the Moon and The Walls of Jericho are some of the massive monoliths (standing 400 to 500 feet high) located in the scenic Cathedral Valley.

Gypsum Sinkhole, is a 200-foot deep sinkhole, 50 feet in diameter, near the Cathedral Valley Junction.

Share your favorite story and photos invite upload photos on your social media  #findyourpark #findyourstory

Check out the National Park Service plan your visit to get the most of your experience.

 

National Park Week

Bryce Canyon in the Mormon Pioneer National Heritage AreaApril 18, 2015 is the kick off of National Park Week.  The National Park Service announces that it has again partnered with the National Park Foundation for National Park Week.  This Presidentally acclaimed celebration of the United States’ national heritage offers free admission to all National Parks on opening weekend, the 18th and 19th of April, 2015.

In the Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area there are three National Parks; Bryce Canyon National Park, Capitol Reef National Park, and Zion’s National Park.  The National Park Service in conjunction with the state of Utah, and the Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area invite you to visit one of these spectacular sites.

Kreig Rasmussen Photography http://www.kreigrasmussenphoto.com/bryce-canyon-2/
Kreig Rasmussen Photography http://www.kreigrasmussenphoto.com/bryce-canyon-2/

Your amazing first view of Bryce Canyon National Park offers the wonder of the numerous rows of the majestic pine trees that will obscure the vibrant colors and the splendor of  the canyon.  Once visitors reach the rim, a magnificent array of colors spring forth, giving a spectacular view particularly during daybreak and sunset.  Take a 37 mile round trip to the top 15 most visited viewpoints of Bryce Canyon.

Photo Courtesy of National Park Service
Photo Courtesy of National Park Service

Capitol Reef National Park, in the Boulder Loop District of the Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area is all that one would expect from a National Park.  The magnificent scenery of the sandstone spires and monoliths, the twisting, winding canyons, and the enormous domes have been fascinating visitors since its designation as a national park in 1937 by President Franklin D. Roosevelt.

Photo Courtesy of National Park Service
Photo Courtesy of National Park Service

Utah’s first designated National Park  was Zion National Park.  Here you will discover incredible views, renowned hiking trails such as Angels Landing, The Narrows, and Subway, will give countless experiences.  The park itself has a sense of reverence which many visitors recognize much like the Native Americans who regarded Zion as sacred.

Visit one of the Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area Parks and remember to share your experience, favorite story and photos on your social media with #findyourpark #findyourstory.

 

Native American presence in the Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area – Press Release 12/31/14

December 30, 2014

For immediate release

WHAT: Native American presence in the MPNHA.

WHEN: Deadline not specified

WHERE: Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area

CONTACT: Monte Bona, MPNHA Exec. Director – (801) 699-5065

EMAIL: montebona@hotmail.com

WEBSITE: http://www.mormonpioneerheritage.org, www.uen.org.

FACEBOOK: Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area

Native American Heritage and Presence

By: Steven J. Clark

Richfield, UT: A trip down the Mormon Pioneer Heritage Highway (U.S. Hwy 89) not only puts travelers in touch with rural settings that harken back to the earliest days of our pioneer roots, but also allows travelers a brush with history that extends much farther back.

Monte Bona, Executive Director of the MPNHA, says that the Highway 89 corridor is home to a rich Native American history, dating back thousands of years. “We want to view the Native American influence in the MPNHA not just in its historical context,” Bona said, “but also in the context of how their culture and traditions contribute to our society today.”

Fairview Museum, Fairview Utah, Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area

Just one block east of Highway 89, at Fairview, UT, is the Fairview Museum that houses, among other things, the huge skeleton of a prehistoric Mammoth, found during the excavation of Huntington Reservoir. The skeleton is the centerpiece of the museum, but in the surrounding halls is one of the state’s best collections of pictures and artifacts detailing the presence of a significant population of Native Americans, primarily Paiutes, in Sanpete Valley.

Native American Fremont Tribe Pit House Entry Utah Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area

Further south, the Sevier Valley has both an ancient and a modern Native American history. The ancient part is preserved at the Fremont Indian State Park, located on Interstate 70, a few miles west of the Highway 89 turnoff to Panguitch. The museum houses artifacts and presents displays of the ancient Fremont’s living conditions, while the park’s hiking trails lead to preserved petroglyphs and the ruins of ancient building structures. Fremonts are thought to have inhabited the area at approximately the same time the Anasazi cultures flourished further south and east in Arizona and New Mexico.

Sevier Valley’s contemporary Indian history is reflected by the presence of the Koosharem Band of Paiute Indians, who occupy two communities in the county. The first is a collection of homes found right in the heart of Richfield City. Were it not for the sign on the east side of North Main Street that declares the presence of a small, subdivision-size reservation, few would even know of its presence.

Travelers on Interstate 70 at Joseph, UT see a collection of seven or eight homes on the west side of the freeway and assume it’s just a far-flung subdivision someone from Joseph decided to develop. But it’s actually reservation land, and the homes are occupied by Koosharem Band Paiute families.

Mystic Hot Springs Monroe, Utah Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area

There are special places near the town of Monroe, in Sevier County, where hot mineral water bubbles out of the ground. They are marked from a distance by the yellow and gold colored soil and rocks that show the mineral traces left by the hot springs over millennia. One spring is commercially developed and calls itself Mystic Hot Springs. The other is only slightly developed, with soaking tubs and a fire pit.

Historians say that prehistoric Indians considered the unique water features to be sacred, as evidenced by the rock art, artifacts and ruins found in the area. In more modern times, Mormon pioneers used the water for soaking pools, with many users claiming that the water had special healing properties.

According to Bona, the MPNHA, is consulting with Native Americans in the area regarding the organization’s intent to develop an interpretive center at one of the hot springs. “Native Americans used these hot springs long before Mormon pioneers arrived,” he said. “We want to be sure we treat them with the dignity and respect they deserve, not just from our viewpoint, but also from theirs.”

At the extreme southern end of the MPNHA, Highway 89 Alt, brushes past the Kaibab Paiute Band Reservation at Kanab, Utah’s sister city, Freedonia, AZ, while the regular Highway 89 route through Page, AZ, crosses into to the vast Navajo reservation and skirts the Hopi reservation that is completely surrounded by the Navajo homeland.

Bona says that he hopes the MPNHA signs placed along Highway 89 will put travelers in mind of the fact that there is not just a Mormon pioneer history in the area, but also an important native peoples’ history as well.

(Uncropped, unenhanced images are available upon request in electronic format (.jpeg)). MPNHA is if federally recognized, non-profit organization dedicated to education and historic preservation within the MPNHA)

First Annual Amazing Earthfest

DATE 05/09/2007 7:15 AM
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

This is part of an occasional series by the Sanpete Country Travel and Utah Heritage Highway 89 Alliance on the people and places along U.S. Highway 89.

First Annual Amazing Earthfest

The First Annual Amazing Earthfest in “Dramatic” Southern UtahSouthern Utah’s Kane County

CONTACT: Cowboy Ted Hallisey 435-899-1102 Cowboyted8@aol.com

WEBSITE: www.amazingearthfest.com  or www.kaneutah.com
Alternate Contact/Coordinator: Rich Csenge 207-729-5825, jiw@gwi.net 

KANAB, Utah—Families and individuals from all fifty states and internationally are invited to celebrate the First Annual Amazing Earthfest Celebration, happening May 21-26, 2007 in Kanab, Utah. Here travelers will discover, learn from and celebrate national and state parks, national forests and public lands of the Colorado plateau located in Utah and Arizona.

Kanab plans to establish, host and support this broadly inclusive event each year in May, fostering education, scientific discovery and understanding, plus recreation and entertainment. The ultimate goal is to attract visitors from across the nation and abroad to Kane County, for the purpose of experiencing the National Parks and Public Lands that were recently described by Sunset Magazine as “dramatic.”

Visitors can choose from a wide variety of scheduled activities including: lectures and demonstrations, scientific and educational symposia, Native American and Pioneer cultural programs, guided backcountry trips, expeditions and musical performances. Additional activities include: exhibitions of visual arts, painting, sculpture, hand-made crafts, culinary delights and Pioneer history.

Scientific Presentations – Visiting scholars, scientists and staff from major regional educational institutions and the public land managing agencies will be invited to present on geology, ecology, biology, paleontology and archaeology, as well as land and resource management techniques. Programs are planned for a host of visitor centers in the area, as well as guided site visits and expeditions to remote locations in the region. Activities, exhibits, lectures and demonstrations will be designed to educate and inform local residents and visitors about the scientific discovery, study, history and natural wonders of Southern Utah and the Arizona Strip.

Creative Arts & Entertainment – Artists, musicians and storytellers will be on-hand to express their experience of the history, life and culture of the Intermountain West, through exhibitions, concerts and presentations, including competitions for prizes. Pioneer history and culinary arts will round out visitors’ enjoyment and the Tribe of the Colorado Plateau has been invited to participate.

Outdoor Recreation – Campers, hikers, horseback riders, cyclists, mountain bikers, climbers, road tourists and off-road vehicle enthusiasts are invited to make Southern Utah & Northern Arizona their destination for this springtime event; to engage in a favorite sport, while enjoying the welcoming hospitality of area service providers. OHVs are welcome on designated routes and trails.

Want a special treat? Hit the Arizona Strip and learn about the Condor Release Program.

Tentative Amazing Earthfest Participants ~ 2007

  • Best Friends Animal Society – bird display on site in Angel Canyon
  • Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park – nature walks
  • Glen Canyon National Recreation Area – Lake Powell events
  • Grand Canyon National Park – North Rim
  • Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument – Dinosaur talks and exhibits
  • Thunderbird Foundation for the Arts – Maynard Dixon Home
  • Pipe Spring National Monument – Native American and Pioneer food and lifestyle recreations & sampling

Also: Bryce Canyon National Park, Cedar Breaks National Monument, Dixie National Forest, East Zion Tourism Council, Kaibab National Forest, Kanab City, Kane County Office of Tourism, Kodachrome Basin State Park, Mormon Pioneer Heritage Highway, Page-Lake Powell, Utah Office of Tourism, and Zion National Park.

For more information on First Annual Amazing Earthfest Celebration please call Cowboy Ted Hallisey-435-899-1102 or Rich Csenge 207-729-5825.

# # #

For more information Contact:

Monte Bona
Sanpete County Travel and Heritage Council
(435) 462-2502

Show to Feature Unique Works of Artist Larry Neilson

DATE 07/08/2006 7:15 AM
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

This is part of an occasional series by the Sanpete Country Travel and Utah Heritage Highway 89 Alliance on the people and places along U.S. Highway 89.

Show to Feature Unique Works of Artist Larry Neilson

The Fairview Museum is hosting a special show of works by Ephraim artist Larry Nielson in July and August.

Nielson is best known for his wildlife and Native American paintings on old and weathered wood; for drawings of “fat cat” and other critters, and posters that were popular in the 1970s; and, most recently, for a painting he did of a famous military scene that ended up being circulated around the country.

The two-month-long show will feature 67of these works, starting from his 1970s “retro work” up to his most recent art. This includes a painting Nielson did of the image of the marines raising the flag at Iwo Jima in 1945. That painting was turned into a print that is being circulated around the United States and is very popular with veterans groups.

Neilson’s early work included cartoon-like drawings of animals and posters for artists including Janice Joplin, the Beetles, and Jimmie Hendrix. He spent several years working as an artist and back-up singer in Los Angeles.

In the 1970s, he was inspired to draw a picture of a fluffy, “sort-of-arrogant-looking” feline that he dubbed “Fat Cat.” He ended up turning it into a poster and for years, Fat Cat was hugely popular. Following the success of Fat Cat, Nielson was inspired to draw other images of cats, followed by a whole series of other critters: elephants, pigs, horses. Recently, Fat Cat and his pack made come back. The smirky orange cat graces the cover of a new book, Cat Miscellany, that was published by a press in London, England.

His “weathered wood” paintings are mostly of Native Americans, wildlife, rodeo scenes and Western themes such as rodeos and cowboys. Before making these creations, Nielson always waits for his canvas to “speak to him” before he picking up a paintbrush.

“The wood tells me what to do with it, it is like it has its own spirit,” he says. “Every piece of wood is a challenge, a different experience. Sometimes, I see a piece of wood and there is an immediate connection, I know just what it wants me to do with it. Other times, I have to put a piece away for a while, then bring it back out later and I will see something special in it, a face or something, that needs to come out. It is very personal.”

Nielsen works mostly from a studio in the garage behind his family home on Main Street in Ephraim, calling it Wind and Wings Wood Works ( www.windandwings.com ). The Victorian home from which he is based has been in his family for more than 100 years.

# # #

For more information Contact:

Monte Bona
Sanpete County Travel and Heritage Council
(435) 462-2502

Get Ready to Rendezvous in Mt. Pleasant – Press Release 6/3/2005

DATE 06/03/2005 12:38 PM
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

This is part of an occasional series by the Sanpete Country Travel and Utah Heritage Highway 89 Alliance on the people and places along U.S. Highway 89.

Get Ready to Rendezvous in Mt. Pleasant

Mt. Pleasant’s 6th annual Blackhawk Mountain Man Rendezvous will be held July 1 to 4 at the Sanpete County Fairgrounds. The popular four-day festival attracts hundreds of shooters, traders and enthusiasts from throughout Utah and other parts of the United States. The event is part of Mt. Pleasant’s Hub City Days and is open to the general public. It includes a Dutch-oven cook off, muzzle-loader shootouts, exhibits, trading, displays, candy cannon explosions, tomahawk and knife-throwing contests, frying pan tosses, kids games, Native American dancers, historical re-enactments and more. Many participants also camp out in authentic teepees and wall tents.A main attraction is “Traders Row” that includes historic items like those made and sold at Mountain Men Rendezvous before 1840. Traditionally at rendezvous, “flat landers,” people who did not live in the mountains, would come to the rendezvous and wander through to see what was for sale. Items that are likely to be available for purchase include handmade leather goods, clothing, tin ware, bead work, bags, belts, pipe bags, and wooden boxes.Festivities begin Friday, July 1 with a Dutch-oven cook off at the Mt. Pleasant city park. Judging will be held at 7 p.m. On Saturday, July 2, there will be muzzle-loader rifle shoots at 1 and 2 p.m. Additional shoots will be held on Sunday, including shotgun and pistol shooting. On Monday, July 4, there will be primitive demonstrations, music, kids games, food, fun and more. A raffle for a muzzle-loader rifle and other prizes will be held at 4 p.m.

The rendezvous was started and is planned yearly by David and Pat Gonzalez, who are longtime enthusiasts of Mountain Men rendezvous, with help from the Sanpete County Heritage Council. Pat Gonzalez herself produces numerous items that she sells at rendezvous, including bead work, boxes covered in animal hide, and leather and wool dresses.

For more information, contact the Dave Gonzalez, (435) 462-0152; Lynn Mikesell, (801) 785-5269; or Mt. Pleasant City, (435) 462-2456.

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For more information Contact:Monte Bona
Sanpete County Travel and Heritage Council
(435) 462-2502
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