Alma Richards

Alma Richards Was Utah’s First Olympic Gold Medalist W. Paul Reese History Blazer, February 1995 Alma Richards, a lanky, unassuming Parowan, Utah, farm boy seemed an unlikely competitor in the 1912 Olympics in Stockholm, Sweden. Fellow athletes, while aboard a ship sailing to the games, amused themselves by prodding the “raw youngster” on his hick upbringing. Richards made it to …

Harold Wallace Ross

The founder of The New Yorker grew up in Salt Lake City. Harold Ross, creator and editor of America’s most sophisticated magazine, The New Yorker, was known for his strong personality and his unsophisticated dress and manners. Some claimed that Ross was a literary hoax, because a man who looked and acted like Harold Ross could not be the editor …

Everett Ruess

Gibbs M. Smith Utah History Encyclopedia, 1994 Everett Ruess was born 28 March 1914 in Los Angeles, California. He was an artist and an eloquent proponent of wilderness, who disappeared in 1934 in the Escalante canyon areas of Utah. Ruess traveled on foot, leading a pack burro, in northern Arizona and southern Utah in the early 1930s. He wrote impassioned …

Arthur William Sampson

The first range ecologist, he was the father of range management. Arthur William Sampson’s list of “firsts” is impressive: first person in America to be called a range ecologist, first to promote deferred and rotational grazing strategies, first to develop usable concepts of indicator species and plant succession for evaluating range condition, first to write a college text on range …

Mattie Clark Sanford

This distinguished teacher and photographer had a zest for living. At age 10 Mattie Clark wanted to leave school to become a photographer. Instead she remained in school much of her life as both a student, receiving a master’s degree in zoology at age 59, and as a teacher for 45 years, retiring in 1944. Born October 30, 1878, in …

Wallace Stegner

(1909 – 1993) Best-selling author, major historical novelist, biographer and a Pulitzer Prize winner, who received most of his formal education in Utah.

Obert C. Tanner

Dionne Williams Utah History Encyclopedia, 1994 A major philanthropic figure in Utah, Obert C. Tanner was born 20 September 1904 in Farmington, Utah, the youngest of ten children born to Annie Clark Tanner, the second plural wife of Joseph M. Tanner. He attended schools in Farmington. As a youngster he thinned sugar beets, herded sheep, and did farm work. He …

Virginia Tanner

She was America’s outstanding children’s dance teacher. As a child growing up in Salt Lake City, Virginia Tanner loved music and movement, but the formal structure of ballet inhibited her. With her father’s encouragement she danced freestyle—wearing black bloomers made by her mother—on the lawn outside the family home. The freedom to explore a child’s love of movement and fantasy …

Kuniko Muramatsu Terasawa

For 52 years she handset type for a unique Utah newspaper. When Kuniko Muramatsu Terasawa died in Salt Lake City on August 2, 1991, the career of a distinguished newspaperwoman and one of the most active senior citizens in Utah came to a close. Her death at age 95 also marked the end of the Issei (first-generation Japanese American) era …

Leora Thatcher

This noted Broadway actress also starred on radio and TV. Leora Thatcher was born May 12, 1894, in Logan, Utah, to Sarah Catherine Hopkins and Moses Thatcher, Jr. She attended Brigham Young College, Utah State Agricultural College (USAC), and the University of Utah where she studied theatre and speech under Maud May Babcock, graduating in 1921. She belonged to the …