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Ogden Utah History

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In 1845, a mountain man names Miles Goodyear built a small trading post and house along the banks of the Weber River. He was the first person to establish a home in the area. Two years later, Brigham Young, the leader of Mormon Church, entered the area with the advance party. They met Miles Goodyear and he was desirous to sell them his land so that he could find another area where he would not be surrounded by colonists

After looking over the area, the route into it was determined to be too treacherous and it was decided that the Mormon pioneers would build their first settlement in the Salt Lake Valley. However leaders of the Church were still interested in building a settlement in the area. Captain James Brown visited Goodyear in August of 1847 and began negotiating a contract to buy Goodyear's land. On November 24, 1847 the land was bought with money that had been earned by the Mormon Battalion in California. Brown received a deed to the land, 75 goats, 75 cattle, 12 sheep, and 6 horses, all for $1,950.

Settlement began within a few months. Numerous families along with the Brown family moved into the area and it was called Brown's Fort, Brown's Settlement, or Brownsville at various times. In 1850, the first militia company was organized, and by the end of the year more than a hundred families were settled in the area. On March 6, 1850 the first Mormon congregation was organized. Just a year later, the Weber Stake was organized. On February 6, 1851, the city received a charter and became officially known as Ogden City.

By 1856, the city had grown to more than three thousand people mostly living in adobe houses. The people's main source for a livelihood was agriculture. This changed quickly though when the town became a major stop on the transcontinental railroad in 1870. The city got the nickname "Junction City" because numerous lines ran through Ogden connecting Idaho to Salt Lake and other cities farther south. With the railroad using Ogden as a major junction, other industries soon grew up in Ogden that took advantage of the railroad for distribution. There were factories set up for canning and preparing agricultural products as well as mills.

During World War II, Ogden became an important link in the war efforts. Hill Air Force Base, Ogden Arsenal, Utah General Depot, and a Naval Supply Depot were all within twelve miles of the city. This brought thousands of families into the area as employees of the U.S. Government. The U.S. Government is still the largest single employer in Ogden.

The growth of the community also increased growth in the Church; by 1941, there were five stakes in the area and Church membership has continued to grow. The Mormon population in the area became large enough to warrant building a temple in Ogden. Announcements for the Ogden Utah Temple were made in 1967 and it was completed in 1972.

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