A brief drive through historic Fort Douglas can be one of the fun things to do in Salt Lake City for visitors curious about early Utah history. During the Civil War, Colonel Patrick Connor and the California Volunteers were sent to Utah to guard a mail route. Colonel Connor had false suspicions that the Mormons were going to rebel against the country, so he chose to build the fort above the city to keep an eye on them. Originally known as Camp Douglas, named after Stephen A. Douglas who ran against Lincoln in the 1860 presidential election. The soldiers founded Utah's first mining district in the mountains across the valley. Camp Douglas became Fort Douglas in 1878 due to its important role as a supply center in the West. During World War I and II, the fort served as a training garrison and a prisoner of war camp. The fort occupied over 10,000 acres at one point, but today the military uses 58 acres. It was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1970. The home featured above was one of the officers' living quarters and it used today by the University of Utah for students to reside in during the school year.
To see historic Fort Douglas buildings and hear interesting stories about the tensions between the soldiers and the Mormons, join us on the Salt Lake City Tour or the Mormon Tabernacle Choir Tour. Reserve your seat on the tour bus online by visiting www.toursofutah.com.