Welcome to the Salt Lake City Chapter - National Society of The Sons of Utah Pioneers.


10th Ward Chapel
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Monthly Meeting

Our Meetings are the first Thursday of every month at the 10th Ward Chapel, located at 420 South 800 East, Salt lake City, UT

Parking is on the south side of the building, next to the Chuck-A-Rama Restaurant

Anyone is invited to attend, the members and their wives, guests, friends or all who are interested in the programs and the organization.

The meeting begins at 7:15 p.m.

We typically have a 75 minute presentation, then time for interaction with the audience.

Many of the members like to go to the restaurant about 6 p.m. before the meeting.  Senior discount cards are available for the meal.

Next Meeting - March 1, 2018 - 7:15 p.m.
10th Ward Chapel - 420 South 800 East, Salt Lake City, Utah
Rhett James

John F. Tanner (Jack)

Subject: Salt Lake Temple

A descendent of Mormon Pioneers on both sides of family (Tanners and Fishers).  Born and lived in Salt Lake City all his life except for 4 years as a young missionary in Australia and with his wife Annette in the Church Education System in New Jersey.

Attended both University of Utah and BYU culminating with a Masters Degree in Public Administration.  Professionally managed three different state-wide trade and professional associations as an Association Executive.  Also served for a time as an Adjunct Professor in the Graduate School of Public Administration at BYU.

Has held many leadership positions in the LDS Church and currently serves as an Ordinance Worker and Assistant Recorder in the Salt Lake Temple.  Temple service has included two years in the Manhattan Temple and eight years in the Salt Lake Temple.   Currently also serves as High Priest Group Leader in the Canyon Road Ward in downtown Salt Lake.

Three children, all with families living in Salt Lake City, Kaysville and Oceanside California.

Programs for April 5th and May 3rd
Rhett James

A. Oscar Olson

Subject:  The Hole-In-The-Rock

Brief History of A. Oscar Olson, Born 1939 only child of two Swedish parents (both born in Sweden in the 1800's), raised in South Salt Lake, class of 1957 Granite High School, worked at Granite School District until his Army days, which were from 1960 to August 1962.  He was married in late 1962 and has three children.

During his last days in the Army in May 1962, he took a leave and went on a river trip in the Glenn Canyon (now Lake Powell) which developed a serious interest in Western History, including the San Juan Mission and the Hole In The Rock, as they hiked up through the Hole from the River before the Lake.

He relates:  "I have explored much of the trail since those days, by 4 wheel drive, by boat (the Crossing), by foot and by air.  I found it to be an incredible story and have read everything I could find on it.  So, I will tell you my tale.   I am not a scholar on this and will always be a student, but I have been on the ground and have seen much".

His career was as a bus driver, mostly Greyhound, and has been in all 48 States, driven over 4 million miles, and made 18 years of trips across the Mormon Trail and the Hill Cumorah Pageant with Tour Groups.

Presently, he is retired, and spends much of his time exploring for Indian Rock Art, Petroglyphs and Pictographs.  He is a member of the Oregon-California Trail Association (OCTA), Lincoln Highway Association, Old Spanish Trails Association (OSTA), Utah Rock Art Research Association (URARA), and Sons of Utah Pioneers (SUP)."

Dr. William C. Tanner

Subject:  Publishing The Pioneer Magazine

Bill tanner is the publisher of the Pioneer Magazine, which has been reaching new heights in excellence, referring to content, layout, and subject matter of the highest caliber.  He will be explaining some of the behind the scenes work in order to bring the magazine to our doorstep.

Rhett S. James spoke to us on February 1, 2018
Rhett James

Rhett Stephens James speaking about
Brigham Young & Chief Washakie

Chief Washakie of the Shoshone Photo courtesy of Jackson Hole Historical Society & Museum, from A Photographic Essay By Henry E. Stamm, IV, Ph.D

Rhett James

A long time friend, William "Bill" Kettley introduced brother James, who as historian has publsihed extensively including books, articles in magazines and academic journals including biographies about American artist Bill Hill, Martin Harris, Lucy Harris, J. Reuben Clark, and subjects such as Utah Statehood, folklore of Ballet, Charles Jennens who selected the scriptures used by Handel’s in Messiah, and other histories.  He has also written articles about Native Americans in the early Latter-day Saint Christian settlement of Utah Territory.

His biogaphy extends on writing for the Logan Herald Journal, the newspaper Cache Citizen, book reviews for historical journals, the FARMS publication at Brigham Young University, poetry, and playwright.  Over a million have seen his production of "Martin Harris:  The Man Who Knew".  He was 53 years in the Seminary and Institute Programs for the church in locations in Utah and New Zealand, with more than 200,00 attending his lectures and classes.

His presentation focused on Chief Washakie and his relationship with Brigham Young through letters from Brigham Young.  When the Utah Territory was young, the Indians wre rapidly being displaced by white settlers creating cultural conflicts and making it necessary to have help from those who spoke the Indian language, one of whom was Bill Hickman.   Brigham felt that only when the Indians attained a respectable degree of ecnomic self-sufficiency would peaceful relations exist therefore the Indian Farm program was created and Brother James shared some of Brigham Young's letters about the negotiations between Young and Washakie.

Behind the efforts was also the belief that the Indians needed to be brought into the church and kingdom.  Brigham was very quick to offer help with food, tools, places to settle, livestock, hunting grounds, help in learning to farm, and trying to find them a permanent settlement, which in 1881 they founded Washakie, Utah for them, after moving five times over a seven year period.  By 1886 the Indian seetlement started "to assume the appearance of a prosperous little village."

Then a period of disaster, the mission store burned, sheep and cattle were lost in the winter, the saw mill burned, and seven years of grasshopper destruction of crops occurred.  Then some moved off to Fort Hall and Wind River, others moved to get employment, the depression and world war II took some, until 1967 when only ten Indians remained from about 187 in 1881.  Brother James said:  "What took place between 1854 and 1967 was unique to Mormon history if not to Western American history.

National Quick References

A sampling of past speakers and activities
Speaker or Activity Subject
Ryan Combs Mormon Missionary Database
Emily Utt Mormon Architecute - Provo Tabernacle converted to a Temple
Jeffrey D. Meservy Pioneer Trail:   Martin-Willie-Hunt&Hodgett hand-cart companies
Nathan (Nate) D. Leishman Humanitarian Disaster Response - LDS Church
Steven Olsen Harmony Pennsylvania Priesthood Restoration site
T.C. Christensen "Ephraim's Rescue" Film
James C. Hurst "What would you do?"- compelling pioneer experiences
Ron L. Andersen Lincoln Leadership Society - Abraham Lincoln and Joseph Smith
Steve Sorensen Jungle Refugee Scouts (Karen and Karenni people of Myanmar)
Jeffrey N. Walker Joseph Smith's extradition trials - Habeas Corpus
Hank Thompson "Mormon Money"
George Potter Lehi's Trail from Jerusalem to Bountiful
Rochelle Kaplan Jews in Utah (Not an Oxymoron)
Jerry Hayes History of Automobiles in Utah
Ophir Historic District Chapter Trek in the summer of 2015
Annual Program Salt Lake City Chapter SUP Scholarship Winners
Annual Program The Latter-day Saint Institute Singers Christmas Program in December




2016 - January - February - March - April - May - June - July - August - September - October - November - December

2015 - January - February - March - April - May - June - July - August - September - October - November - December

2014 - January - February - March - May - August - September - October - November - December

2013 - January - February - March - April - May - June - July - August - September - October - November - December

 Chapter Projects


Little Mountain Summit

Some time ago the stonework was damaged and the plaque stolen, but repaired, the plaque replaced, and re-dedicated on July 21, 2015, which is the anniversary of the Mormon Pioneers crossing here on July 21, 1847.

Photo Slide Show

Tooele County Trek - 2015

Sponsored by the Twenty Wells and Salt Lake City Chapters open to all SUP members, held on the 27th of June.  Hot but enoyable.

Photo Slide Show

Ensign Peak

One of the many monuments of Sons of Utah Pioneers.  Claimed by many groups but held special by the Salt Lake City Chapter

Fort Bridger Trek - 2013

Out tour guides were Glenn Rawson and Dennis Lyman for an all-day trip  to Fort Bridger, Wyoming.

Photo Slide Show

Days of '47 Queens 2015

Annually the Days of '47 Royalty speak and perform for the members.  This Royalty well represents those of all years.

Photo Slide Show

National Society of Sons of Utah Pioneers

There are about 45 chapters nationwide, most of them in the intermountain west.

The mission of the society is to come to know our fathers and turn our hearts to them, preserve their memory and heritage, honor present-day pioneers worldwide, and teach these qualities to the rising generation.

We honor the Utah Pioneers for their faith in God, devotion to family, loyalty to church and country, hard work and service to others, courage in adversity, personal integrity, and unyielding determination.


Membership in the society is open to all good men of every age and circumstance who have an interest in the early Utah Pioneers and wish to honor them, perpetuate their memory and preserve their heritage for posterity.


Join Now and affiliate with a chapter.

Some other links to explore at the National website

   Calendar      National news       Pioneer Magazine