Utah celebrates its 126th birthday Tuesday

Jan 4, 2022, 4:37 PM | Updated: 5:48 pm
Shown above, the flag hung in the tabernacle. The flag measured 158 feet by 75 feet with the forty-...
Shown above, the flag hung in the tabernacle. The flag measured 158 feet by 75 feet with the forty-fifth star illuminated. (Utah State University, Merrill Library, Special Collections. Photograph also available at Utah State Historical Society, Marriott Library, and the LDS Church Historical Department.)
(Utah State University, Merrill Library, Special Collections. Photograph also available at Utah State Historical Society, Marriott Library, and the LDS Church Historical Department.)

Tuesday, Jan. 4, 2021, marks the 126th anniversary of Utah becoming an official state of the United States of America. To paint a picture, in 1896, the first x-rays were taken, the first college basketball game with five on each side was conducted as an experiment, and Tootsie Rolls were first introduced. And of course, Utah was signed into the Union by President Grover Cleveland, making Utah the 45th state.

In an article from the Salt Lake Tribune dated Jan. 3, 1896 says there was some dispute in what time the statehood proclamation would be signed with the paper being told, “Secretary Thurber advised Gov. West that it was impossible to predict when on Saturday Mr. Cleveland would sign the declaration.” The article concluded that after communicating with the President about the importance of representing the state at such a crucial moment, Gov. West was told it would likely be at noon the following day and he would be allowed to be in attendance.

Multiple events took place on Saturday to celebrate Utah’s new statehood. Business was suspended for the day and people took to the streets to celebrate; ringing bells, shooting off fireworks, and cheering.

James E. Talmage wrote the following of the event: “At 8:03 a.m., Mountain Time, the expected message reached Salt Lake City that Grover Cleveland President of the United States had signed the proclamation which makes the admission of Utah to the Union of States complete…. The news of the admission was welcomed by the firing of cannon and small arms, the shrieking of steam whistles and every other kind of noise which could be produced.” 

The National Guard marched to the capitol building and fired a 21-gun salute for the occasion.

“Though we have seen some interesting days in Utah, We have Never seen such a Day as this,” Wilford Woodruff, President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints wrote to his son in a letter. 

The following Monday, the tabernacle, decked out with red, white, and blue and a 45 star flag, hosted a number of performances to celebrate.

More information including historic images can be found at https://thrive125.utah.gov/ and https://collections.lib.utah.edu/.

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

Local News

Barnes on the USU campus. (Credit: Utah State University)...
Michael Houck

Suspect arrested for leaving lewd images across USU campus

Police booked a man for leaving pictures of his genitals and exposing himself across Utah State University's Logan campus.
19 hours ago
(Greg Anderson/KSL TV)...
Josh Ellis

8-year-old girl critically injured in Kaysville parade incident

City officials say the Kaysville 4th of July parade has been canceled after a 12-year-old girl was critically injured.
19 hours ago
(KSL TV)...
Josh Ellis

Two arrested in connection with SLC shooting

SALT LAKE CITY — Police say two men have been arrested in connection with a shooting in Salt Lake City’s Ballpark neighborhood that injured a 20-year-old man. Officers with the Salt Lake City Police Department responded to the area of 1500 S. Major Street around 5:30 a.m. Sunday. When police arrived, they located a man […]
19 hours ago
The Deuel Creek Fire burns in the foothills near Centerville Monday morning. (John Wilson/KSL TV)...
Josh Ellis, Karah Brackin & Bonnie Stray, KSL TV

Centerville wildfire ‘most likely’ caused by fireworks; evacuation orders lifted

Dozens of homes were evacuated early Monday morning after a human-caused wildfire spread quickly in the foothills east of Centerville.
19 hours ago
(Credit: Charlene Huber)...
Michael Houck

Family displaced after garage fire in Millcreek

A Millcreek family is displaced from their home after a fire started near their garage Sunday afternoon.
2 days ago
The suspect motor home that abducted a woman. (Credit: South Salt Lake Police)...
Michael Houck

Police cancel search for possible abduction suspect

South Salt Lake Police are searching for a motorhome that possibly abducted a woman Saturday evening.
2 days ago

Sponsored Articles

hand holding 3d rendering mobile connect with security camera for security solutions...
Les Olson

Wondering what security solutions are right for you? Find out more about how to protect your surroundings

Physical security helps everyone. Keep your employees, clients, and customers safe with security solutions that protect your workplace.
Many rattan pendant lights, hay hang from the ceiling.Traditional and simple lighting....
Lighting Design

The Best Ways to Style Rattan Pendant Lighting in Your Home

Rattan pendant lights create a rustic and breezy feel, and are an easy way to incorporate this hot trend into your home decor.
Earth day 2022...

How Are You Celebrating Earth Day 2022? | 4 Simple Ways to Celebrate Earth Day and Protect the Environment

Earth Day is a great time to reflect on how we can be more environmentally conscious. Here are some tips for celebrating Earth Day.
Get Money Online...

More Ways to Get Money Online Right Now in Your Spare Time

Here are 4 easy ways that you can get more money online if you have some free time and want to make a little extra on the side.
Lighting trends 2022...

Lighting Trends 2022 | 5 Beautiful Home Lighting Trends You Can Expect to See this Year and Beyond

This is where you can see the latest lighting trends for 2022 straight from the Lightovation Show at the Dallas World Trade Center.
What Can't You Throw Away in the Trash...

What Can’t You Throw Away in the Trash? | 5 Things You Shouldn’t Throw in to Your Trash Can

What can't you throw away in the trash? Believe it or not, there are actually many items that shouldn't be thrown straight into the trash.
Utah celebrates its 126th birthday Tuesday