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Provo stake celebrates 150 years

PROVO, Utah — Four years after the pioneers entered the Salt Lake Valley, with membership of the Church expanding across the territory, the first stake in Utah County was created March 19, 1851, by President Brigham Young with Isaac Higbee as president. It was the third stake organized in the new home of the Church and was originally named the Utah Stake.

To commemorate the 150 years since its organization, members of the current-day Provo Utah Central Stake joined for two days of activities on March 17-18.

The Stake Sesquicentennial Celebration included an evening in which stake members sampled pioneer-type cuisine and lifestyle. Family portraits were taken in a rustic barn setting and will be included in a stake history. A gallery of art depicting Provo history, as well as a time line showing the history of the stake and the estimated 120 stakes that have been formed within the original boundaries of the Utah Stake, detailed the growth of the stake.

Festivities culminated with a fireside at which L. Douglas Smoot, great-grandson of Abraham O. Smoot who served as president of the stake, recounted the history of the stake, noting how it paralleled the history of Provo City. It was also noted how four former presidents of the stake were later elected mayors of Provo City.