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The Colonization of Utah Utah
Taken from the Utah History Encyclopedia (Links Added)
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Nondirected settlements were those founded by individuals, families, and neighborhood groups without direction from ecclesiastical authority. Most of the communities along the Wasatch Front were of this type. As the land in established communities was settled, and the available water preempted, young men, upon their marriage, would look for another place to locate. In addition, an average of about three thousand immigrants came into the Salt Lake Valley each summer and fall--and they immediately needed a place to live. Also, there were always adventurous souls who wanted to try a new situation, or who wanted to leave a village. Although LDS officials did not launch nondirected settlements, they encouraged them, sometimes furnished help, and quickly established wards when there were enough people to justify them.

During the second decade after the initial settlement, 1885-67, the threat to the people caused by the approach of the Utah Expedition of General Albert Sidney Johnston in 1857 led Mormon leaders to "call in" all colonists in outlying areas, including San Bernardino, California, and Carson Valley, Nevada, as well as missionaries from all over the world. Land had to be found for them to settle, as well as for the 3,000 or more immigrants who continued to arrive each summer and fall from Great Britain, Scandinavia, and elsewhere. During the ten years after the Utah War, 112 new communities were founded in Utah. New areas opened up for settlement included Bear Lake Valley and Cache Valley in the north; Pahvant Valley and part of Sanpete Valley in the center; and the Sevier River Valley, Virgin River Valley, and Muddy River Valley in the south. Expansion within these and older settlements continued until the 1890s. Important cities that were first settled during this period include Logan (1859), Gunnison (1859), Morgan (1860), St. George (1861), and Richfield (1864).


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