The organic act passed by the U.S. Congress on September 9, 1850 created an office of territorial secretary with three major functions:
(1) To record and preserve all laws and proceedings of the Legislative Assembly (2) To record all acts and proceedings of the Governor in his executive department (3) To provide copies of these official acts to specific federal officials
The EXECUTIVE PAPERS are really part of a larger record keeping system maintained by the Executive Department of the territorial government. Most of the individual documents filed in the series are those that were sent to the Governor or the Secretary requesting or supporting some official action; copies of the actual pardon, appointment notice, requisition, or other “official act”; or copies of documents which reflect actions taken directly by the Governor, such as messages to the Territorial Assembly and proclamations.
Governor Young’s Special Election Proclamation
Recordkeeping was not quite the same for governors during the territorial period (1850-1895), compared to more recent years with offices full of staff to keep track of correspondence, photographs, and artifacts. The Archives does have a few things in its holdings to provide insight into territorial governance, which are now going online as part of the Utah Territory Project.
Governor (1850-1857: Young)
Governor (1880-1886: Murray)
Governor (1889-1893: Thomas)
Legislative publications available in the Research Center
As the 2013 session of the Legislature gets underway, we’d like to highlight some relevant publications that have been updated recently.
It’s always best to start with the Research Guide, such as Legislative History or Legislative Records Overview.
The Unannotated Code is the complete, codified law statutes reflecting changes in the most recent session. It has been published since 1982, when it was recognized that the full annotated code was getting unwieldy just to check what the “law of the land” was for a certain year.
The Utah Code Annotated is, however, immensely valuable when it comes to research in the legislative process and how bills turn into law (and sometimes even the intent of the legislation). Unlike other records and publications that are produced by government agencies and preserved by the Utah State Archives, this publication represents the work of editors experienced with legal research, and is purchased for the use of research and future historical context. Supplements and replacement (“pocket parts”) are released a couple times a year.
Administrative Rules are created by agencies of the state’s executive branch and are enacted as laws under regulatory authority granted by the Legislature or the state Constitution. In short, the Legislature has created a method by which Executive branch agencies can codify their own policies and procedures and give them the force of law. Like the Utah Code, the Administrative Code is compiled with authorization by editors and published for the use of legal research. The most up-to-date information on rules is always found at http://www.rules.utah.gov.
The Research Center will be closed Monday, January 21, 2013 in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. It will open once again Tuesday, January 22, 2013 at 9 a.m.
The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.
Here’s an excerpt:
600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 6,100 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 10 years to get that many views.
Click here to see the complete report.
The Research Center for the Utah State Archives and Utah State History will be closed Tuesday, December 25, 2012 for Christmas Day. It will re-open Wednesday, December 26 at 9 a.m.
We will also be closed Tuesday, January 1, 2013 for New Year’s Day.
UPDATE: This has been postponed a couple of weeks. Most pages (and bookmarks) will not be affected when that time comes, though we always welcome feedback if something breaks or is particularly hard to find.
The website at http://archives.utah.gov will be moving to a new server on December 1, 2012. Please be patient as we find and fix any broken links and finish moving content over the next few days.
If you are unable to find some information on researching at the Utah State Archives, please feel free to contact the Research Center for some help, Monday through Friday 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. The phone number is (801) 533-3535 or you may use email.
Have a wonderful and safe Thanksgiving!
The Research Center will be closed Thursday, November 22, 2012 for Thanksgiving. Normal hours will resume Friday, November 23, 2012.
John Walter Holbrook
The Research Center will be closed Monday, November 12, 2012 in honor of Veterans Day. It will open again at the usual time of 9 a.m. on Tuesday, November 13, 2012.
Did you know the Utah State Archives has many resources on military service records? Check out these Research Guides:
The U.S. National Archives also have a lot of information on records generated by all the military branches, including how to obtain individual service records.
All Events for Utah Archives Month | RSVP on Facebook | Get Directions
Friday, October 26 at Noon
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As part of Roosevelt’s New Deal program of the 1930s, the Works Progress Administration (WPA) provided relief jobs to millions of Americans. One facet of the WPA was the hiring of men and women to document the history and folklore of America so as to capture the “soul” of the nation. While researching at the Montana Historical Society Research Center more than a decade ago, historian Matthew Basso stumbled upon copies of six stories that had been submitted for inclusion in a volume titled Men at Work. They arrived too late to be considered. Federal Writers’ Project (FWP) staff had already chosen thirty-four stories from submissions across the country and the volume was nearing publication. In the end, however, that publication was waylaid by the eruption of World War II and the manuscript was forgotten. Now, Basso is bringing these rediscovered stories to their intended audience—the American people.
Works of fiction that have a creative nonfiction feel, these narratives stem from direct observation of or participation in the work described and offer portraits of Americans from diverse ethnic backgrounds who labored in jobs as varied as logging, mining, fruit packing, and rodeo riding. The writers, directed by editor Harold Rosenberg, also represent a variety of backgrounds and experience. Some, like Jack Conroy, Jim Thompson, and Chester Himes, became strong voices in the literary world. The vivid accounts in “Men at Work: Rediscovering Depression-era Stories from the Federal Writers’ Project” illuminate the meaning of work during a time when jobs were scarce and manual labor highly valued. With our country once again in financial crisis and workers facing an anemic job market, today’s readers will find these stories especially poignant.
Matthew Basso is an assistant professor of history and gender studies, and director of the American West Center at the University of Utah. He is a co-editor of Across the Great Divide: Cultures of Manhood in the American West.