History of Kamas, Utah
Taken from the Utah History Encyclopedia (Links Added)
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Kamas was first known as "Rhoades Valley," named for Thomas Rhoades, the owner of the original territorial land grant. Rhoades first came to the valley in 1859 with about twenty other Mormons including W.O. Anderson, John Turnbow, John Simpson, Morgan Lewis, Daniel Lewis, Alma Williams, Clinton Williams, Richard Venable, Richard Pangburn, John Lambert, and their families. The group clustered together in a fort near a spring on the east side of the valley for the first several years. The log fort was sixteen feet high and the fort walls formed the backs of the houses. Before the group vacated the fort, thirty-two families had lived in it. A log building in the fort's center was used as a schoolhouse, meetinghouse, amusement hall, and center of government. Before the land was surveyed and divided into town lots between 1869 and 1870, squatter's rights prevailed. The town was incorporated in 1912; one of the town's first orders of business was the election of James Orlan Pack as mayor. Religion played a key role in Kamas's development. Many early town leaders were also ecclesiastical leaders of some prominence. Brigham Young appointed Captain Charles Russell the first presiding elder of Rhoades Valley and the southern part of the area that would eventually become LDS Summit Stake. After Russell moved from the area in 1867, Young appointed Ward E. Pack in his place. Over the next four decades several members of the Pack family served as bishops of the Kamas LDS Ward.


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