WASHINGTON, Utah — Pioneer women who settled southern Utah will have their own memorial, if Harold and Priscilla Cahoon get their way.
The Cahoons are collecting names and histories of women who arrived in southern Utah between 1857 and 1870. When all the available data are compiled, the women's names will be listed on a bronze plaque beside a statue, yet to be commissioned, of a pioneer woman.
"We are hoping to get a grant and donations to cover the cost," Priscilla Cahoon said.
Through the efforts of Washington City, its Sons of the Utah Pioneers chapter and its historical society, a monument has already been created for the men who were part of the Cotton Mission pioneers, who were sent south by Brigham Young to grow cotton.
"It was while working on this project I realized there was not much being said about the women," said Harold Cahoon. "Stories about the women indicated they were the prodders, the ones who were the glue of this venture. They deserve to be listed."
The Cahoons say many of the men settling the area had more than one wife, and they want to make sure all the wives are listed. They would like to see diaries, ledgers and recorded and oral histories of any family south of Parowan. Such material will be copied for the historical society and the Dixie College library and then returned to its owner.
"A lot of the people who first came to Washington City spread out and eventually moved to other parts of southern Utah," Priscilla Cahoon said. "It's important to get every name we can."
Call the Cahoons at 435-628-7759 or write to them at P.O. Box 821, Washington City, UT 84780.