Ogden Points of Interest

1CITY HALL PARK, Washington Ave. between 25th and 26th Sts., extending to Grant Ave., covers an area of ten acres almost in the heart of the city. The mansarded old City Hall, built in 1888 and "decorated" with neon lights, was superseded in 1940 by a ten-story modern setback structure designed by Leslie S. Hodgson. This distinctive City and County Building was erected with and from PWA funds. In the northeastern section of the park is the JEDEDIAH STRONG SMITH MONUMENT, a granite shaft erected by the Utah Pioneer Trails and Landmarks Association to commemorate one of the West's outstanding explorers.

The CARNEGIE FREE LIBRARY, in the southeastern end of the park, was opened in 1903. This dignified white sandstone structure, neo-classic in style, with colonnaded entrance loggia, was the first building in Utah used exclusively as a library. Its shelves contain almost 50,000 volumes, and borrowers' cards in use represent about 60 per cent of Ogden's residents. The library has an excellent collection of western Americana, purchased with the $10,000 "Golden Spike" fund, donated by the Southern Pacific and Union Pacific railroads on the fiftieth anniversary of the Golden Spike ceremony (see Transportation).

The BROOM HOTEL, 376 25th St., constructed in 1882, was at the time considered the finest establishment between Omaha and San Francisco. The ground floor was modernized early in 1940 for commercial uses. John Broom, a Mormon convert from England, was an early pioneer who settled on a bit of high land near Marriott, known as Broom's Bench. He began to make money, at first by salvaging iron from abandoned wagons along the emigrant trails. In 1857 the Mormon militia, while resisting the entrance of Colonel Johnston's troops into Utah, burned a number of supply trains of the U. S. Army in Wyoming. Iron was then very scarce in Utah and Broom gathered many tons, brought it to Ogden, and sold it for 50¢ a pound. Wagon tires were cut into hand-wrought square nails, which brought a premium in the growing community. Properly tempered, crowbars could be bored for musket barrels, and band iron, while not as good as Damascus steel, served to make sabers for the Mormon militia. Broom also put up large quantities of hay, and when the transcontinental railroad came through Ogden he found a ready sale for hay and farm produce at high prices. In 1869 he invested heavily in profitable real estate. After spending several years in San Francisco, Broom returned to Ogden and built this three-story brick hotel, distinguished by its eighteen bulging windows. Tradition has it that on completion of the hotel, Mrs. Broom, while inspecting the new establishment, discovered that no kitchen had been provided; immediately a lean-to on stilts, level with the second-floor banquet hall, was added.

The OGDEN BUDDHIST TEMPLE (Japanese), 2456 Lincoln Ave., in a remodeled brick store building, was occupied as a temple in 1937. The Buddhist shrine or chaitya is encased in a movable pagoda or tope, built on wheels, the front of which is covered by panels that are folded back at the time of ceremony. When the panels are opened the subdued glow of incandescent lights and candles creates a hushed oriental effect. Worshipers in passing before the shrine clasp their hands before their faces in adoration. Services are conducted mainly in Japanese. The congregation rises for singing, but remains seated during the other services. The true name of the Ogden sect is, in Japanese, Jodo-ShinShu, or the True Pure Land Sect, followers of St. Shinran. When Japanese motion pictures are presented in the temple, about four times a year (adm. 75¢-$1), the pagoda is wheeled into a corner out of sight. Weddings and funerals are usually held in the evening; visitors are permitted.

The OGDEN LIVESTOCK COLISEUM, Wilson Lane W. of the viaduct ramp, was erected in 1926 at a cost of $100,000. The Ogden Livestock Show is an outgrowth of the first cattlemen's congress in the United States, held at Ogden in 1892. The number of entries was small at the first show in 1920, and livestock displayed would take no ribbons today. Interest increased in subsequent shows as the quality and number of exhibits improved. The coliseum was completed in time for the seventh show, when seed and poultry exhibits were added. Planned to accommodate expansion for ten years, it was more than filled at the ninth show. Two additions have been necessary. Exhibits are sent from about twenty States and Canada.

NIGGER BOY, atop the three-story brick building at 336 24th St., is a wooden statue of a race horse. Though not a thoroughbred, the animal original, when trained for racing, often defeated horses of greater reputation. Nigger Boy's track career began in 1895 and he ran in hundreds of races in Utah. He died in 1912. The horse was popular with townspeople, and was gentle with children. About 1905 his owners placed the statue on their business property and used the name Nigger Boy as a trade mark. Local residents say that Nigger Boy's statue serves as a perfect weather indicator: if it is covered with snow, they know it has been snowing; if it is wet, there has been rain; if it is dry, and the tail is blowing, the weather is fair and windy.

TABERNACLE PARK, Washington Ave. between 21st and 22nd St. extending to Grant Ave., is an open grassy area owned by the Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter-day Saints. The OGDEN L. D. S. TABERNACLE, the outstanding Mormon building in the city, is in the southeast corner of the park. Seating 1,500, it is used for religious services, conferences, and conventions of the Church, and for cultural gatherings. North of the Ward Amusement Hall and the chapel is the STAKE RELIEF SOCIETY BUILDING (2147 Grant Ave.). Daughters of Utah Pioneers have a two-room collection of pioneer relics on display.

At the rear of the Relief Society Building is the MILES MORRIS GOODYEAR CABIN, a crude pioneer structure built of cottonwood logs in 1844 or 1845. Protected by a canopy and fenced in with wire, it is the oldest remaining building erected by white men in Utah. The cabin was originally part of a group making up Goodyear's Fort Buenaventura on the banks of the Weber River, southwest of the railroad station. It has been moved several times, and was placed here by the Daughters of Utah Pioneers in 1928. A new roof and foundation logs have been provided, but otherwise it stands as Goodyear built it. In the northeastern section is the LORIN FARR MONUMENT, a granite block with a bronze bust of Farr and a bronze plaque detailing his services as Ogden's first mayor. The monument faces the homes of his first and second plural wives.

The CHARLES W. PENROSE HOUSE, 2236 Madison Ave., is a whitewashed adobe house, in the front yard of which are lilac bushes more than fifty years old. Penrose was an apostle of the Mormon Church, a composer of hymns, and one of the editors of the Ogden Junction.

In the northwest corner of LESTER PARK, Madison Ave. between 24th and 25th Sts., extending to Jefferson Ave., is the PIERRE JEAN DE SMET MONUMENT, a granite shaft dedicated to the noted Catholic missionary, who is thought to have visited Salt Lake Valley in 1841.

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