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Photo Courtesy Utah State Historical Society In 1895 Heber Manning Wells was elected the first governor of the State of Utah after it gained statehood. He was elected for a five year term on the Republican ticket and in 1900 was re-elected for a four year term until January 2, 1905. Wells was a member of the constitutional convention which framed the constitution under which Utah was admitted as a state. He graduated from the University of Utah in 1875.
Photos: Utah governors from 1850 to present

First Published Jan 06 2013 04:31 pm • Last Updated Mar 06 2014 06:12 pm

Each Friday, The Salt Lake Tribune presents historic images in a special series called A Look Back. This week’s installment features a photo gallery of some of Utah’s previous governors, including those of the Utah Territory before it became a state in 1896. The U.S. president appointed 15 territorial governors from 1850 until Utah became a state 1896.

Governor John W. Dawson’s three-week term was the shortest, and Brigham Young’s seven-year run as the first territorial governor was the period’s longest. The state’s longest serving governor was Calvin Rampton, who served three terms from 1965 to 1977. Olene Walker served the shortest term, the remaining 14 months of Mike Leavitt’s term upon Leavitt’s resignation to become head of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

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At age 36, Heber Manning Wells was the youngest person to become Utah’s governor, and at the age of 70, Simon Bamberger became the oldest to be elected. Walker, at 72, was the oldest person to enter the office.

Every gallery of the series is available at www.sltrib.com/topics/lookback. Here is a sampling:

Women’s fashion from 1949-50

Key moments in Utah Jazz history

Historical images of Sugar House

Past Sundance Film Festival parties

Utah firefighters at the turn of the 19th century


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Historic bars and saloons in Utah

Early settlers in Idaho

The 1988 Yellowstone fire

Early Utah mansions and homesteads

Pony Express, postal service and telegraph in Utah

The mining ghost town of Mercur

Construction of the Salt Lake Tabernacle

Historic buildings in Utah

30 years of iconic rock and roll in Utah

Hunting and fishing in the early 1900s

BYU, Utah football programs

Next Page >


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