Mayor Dennis Fife started this project as a way to fill the gaps in the books on the history of Brigham City. Prior books have been good attempts at recording the basics of local history. But in most cases, they have lacked citations, and sometimes have included less than historical histories. They also have a tendency to peter out around 1900, as if nothing historical could possibly have happened since then.
This book was created by the hard work of a task force convened by Mayor Fife, and which included Sarah Yates, David Morrell, Kathleen Bradford, and Kaia Michaelis, who served as editor. Additional chapters for the series have been written by special guests including Ron Cefalo, Patti Timbimboo-Madsen, and others.
This book seeks to document the history of Brigham City. It aims to be more thorough than past attempts have been. However, every detail could not possibly be included in any book. We have sought to collate additional detail, where possible, and it is freely available here. There you will find Appendix sorts of materials, such as lists of all those who have served on the Brigham City Council, All-State Sports Champions, as well as additional detailed chapters that could not be included in the print version.
If you feel there is a topic we have missed, please contact the museum. We would welcome your contribution to the online resource.
Kathleen Olson Bradford grew up in Spanish Fork, Utah, and graduated from Utah State University with a bachelor’s degree in English, and a minor in French. She had begun learning French from a private tutor while living in Iran, because no public options were available. (When she was a senior in high school, her father worked in Iran as part of the Point Four Program, and she spent 14 months there.) After graduation, she and her husband Ed moved to Brigham City. She worked many years as a reporter for the Deseret News and was awarded Correspondent of the Year. She also worked as a research specialist for the Brigham City Museum of Art & History. In that time, she authored two publications: Mayors of Brigham City: 1867-2000 (2000) and Brigham City Historic Tour: A Survey of Brigham City’s Past Through its Historic Buildings (1995). She conducted many oral histories with Brigham residents young and old. Her work documenting national historic sites in Brigham City earned her the Governor’s award. She has enjoyed her many opportunities to write histories and share her stories in speaking engagements.
Kathleen and Ed have resided in Brigham City since 1960 and have loved the community. They have 3 children, 10 grandchildren, and 16 great-grandchildren. Family time is one of Kathleen’s greatest pleasures, and she received the Brigham City Mother of the Year Award.
Kaia Michaelis serves as the Director and Curator/Historian for the Brigham City Museum of Art & History. She was born and raised in Sandy, Utah. She earned a bachelor’s degree in art history/history from Utah State University and a master’s degree in museum studies from the University of Leicester. She also serves as President of the Utah Museums Association. She wrote a chapter of Twitter for Museums (2010), and has spoken on various museum and art historical topics at conferences from the local to the national level.
David N. Morrell has lived most of his life in Brigham City and is a descendant of several of the city’s early pioneers. He graduated from Box Elder High School in 1951 and served an LDS mission in Denmark and in the U.S. Army in Korea. He received degrees from Brigham Young University and Utah State University and was the Business Administrator for Box Elder School District for thirty-six years. He married Shirley Klingler and they are the parents of seven children and grandparents to twenty-six grandchildren. David enjoys serving in his church and in the community, studying Mormon and local history, and doing family history.
Sarah Seibel Yates retired as editor of the Box Elder News Journal of Brigham City, Utah. In addition to 40 years of covering local news, she researched and wrote historical articles on local topics and interviewed veterans for a World War II series. A University of Utah graduate, she has authored histories for Box Elder School District, Community Presbyterian Church, and Brigham City Community Hospital, as well as articles for various publications. She is an active volunteer and continues to serve on city and organization boards.
Additional assistance with this project has come from current and former museum staff, including Jennifer Hill and Katie Conrad.