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The Polygamy Blog
Nate Carlisle
Reporter Nate Carlisle and photographer Trent Nelson cover polygamy for The Salt Lake Tribune. You can follow the Polygamy Blog on Twitter at @tribunepolygamy. Follow Nate Carlisle on Twitter at @natecarlisle. Follow Trent Nelson on Twitter at @trenthead.

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(Trent Nelson | The Salt Lake Tribune) Rust on a fence at a large compound at the mouth of Little Cottonwood Canyon in Sandy, Utah that was once home to polygamist leader Rulon Jeffs and his large family. Also on the property was Alta Academy, a school for the group's children. Jeffs moved his family, including his son and successor Warren Jeffs, out of the compound in 1998 after prophesying the city's impending destruction.
Photos: Salt Lake County compound of polygamist leader Rulon Jeffs is in decay

Photographer Trent Nelson recently visited Rulon Jeffs’ old compound at the mouth of Little Cottonwood Canyon and found rust and high grass.

Everything looks like it could use a scrubbing or new coat of paint.

Rulon Jeffs' compound


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The FLDS also operated the Alta Academy school on the site. Old photos show some of the compound and school in the heydays.

Jeffs and his son, the school’s headmaster, Warren Jeffs, closed Alta Academy in 1998 and sold the property. Rulon Jeffs died in 2002.

Judging from property records, the current owners haven’t done much with it. The Salt Lake County assessor website shows while the land value has held steady, the value of the buildings has declined precipitously. In all, the 2013 market value of the property is $674,600, according to the assessor website.

In 2008, it was $1.2 million.

Leaving the place to rot might be fine with some. Alta Academy is the site where a niece and nephew of Jeffs’ say he sexually assaulted them.

Willie Jessop recently gained control of Warren Jeffs’ compound in Hildale and says he plans to use it to better the community there. The Little Cottonwood Canyon compound has long been out of FLDS hands, but would you like to see someone do something with the property to remember Warren Jeffs’ victims or otherwise help people? And what strikes you about these photos?

Twitter: @tribunepolygamy



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