Tooele Transcript Bulletin – News in Tooele, Utah

July 8, 2021
In 1996, Terra residents evacuated as wildfire threatens homes

The Tooele Transcript Bulletin has published Tooele County news since 1894. Here is a flashback of local front-page news from 25, 50, 75 and 100 years ago that occurred during the second week of July.

July 9-11, 1996

A couple of raging wildfires caused authorities to evacuate residents from their Terra homes Monday, July 8.

Between 30 and 50 residents of the small community, located near Dugway Proving Ground, were evacuated as the Davis Knolls fire came dangerously close to them, said Shanon Knowlton, public information officer at the Interagency Fire Center in Salt Lake City.

As of Tuesday, July 9, Terra residents were still evacuated from their homes.

A separate fire on the Goshute Reservation also burned out of control.

Later in the week, Terra residents were allowed to return to their homes Tuesday evening, July 9 as fire crews got a handle on two blazes which had threatened the community 

About 40 residents of the town of Terra were evacuated from their homes Monday afternoon as the Davis Knolls fire raged out of control.

The fire burned 31,500 acres of rangeland and was controlled Wednesday evening, July 10.

July 6-9, 1971

After $5 million worth of site preparation, the first homes were going up at Stansbury Park, Terracor’s planned community 25 miles west of Salt Lake City.

About 15 people had either submitted plans for review or received loan approval and were ready to build, said Bruce Miller, Stansbury marketing director.

Five model homes were being built by Midwest Realty and Finance Co., an alliance of six Salt Lake County builders.

Terracor President Franklin D. Johnson said the development will someday be the verdant home of as many as 15,000 persons.

Later in the week, the Tooele Volunteer Fire Department announced that fire danger caused by weeds and dry grasses around homes, buildings and vacant lots was increasing every day.

During a 10-day period the department answered seven fire calls within the city limits.

“It’s that time of year again. We’re asking everyone to please take a good look at your yards and other properties. If they need cleaning, do so,” said Bill Pitt, fire inspector.

July 9-12, 1946

Thousands of people witnessed the results of the hard working Bit N Spur Club — a top flight three-day rodeo in the beautiful new rodeo grounds and went home thoroughly satisfied with the fine entertainment.

Never was there a more impressive and nicely staged Grand Entry and never were there tougher broncs, meaner bulls and faster calves. Fine professional cowboys were hard put to keep up with first class amateurs, all of which lent a keener spirit of competition.

Later in the week, 46 days without rain coupled with excessive and numerous high winds and heat had brought Tooele Valley under the most damaging drought since 1934, which was then rated as the worst in local weather history.

May 29 was the last beneficial rain and only .07 of an inch of moisture fell in June.

The rainfall for the weather year which would end Sept. 30 was at 12 inches with 16 inches being the normal for the year.

July 8, 1921

In conjunction with the closing of the Tooele Smelter, the active medical and surgical services of the Tooele General Hospital would also close, according to an announcement by Dr. Joseph Phipps.

Only a small nursing force would be maintained to operate the maternity service. The medical and surgical cases would be transferred to Salt Lake City hospitals where Dr. Phibbs had established connections to do his own operating and care of hospital incumbents.

The Tooele Hospital was established by Dr. Phibbs and maintained by him as a private institution. With the help of the smelter he was able to keep up with expenses.

Correspondent Mark Watson compiled this report

Mark Watson

Sports Editor at Tooele Transcript Bulletin
Mark directs all editorial coverage of sports in addition to reporting on a wide range of events from high school football to international racing. He has a wealth of journalism experience, having worked for four other newspapers in the state. Mark grew up in Tooele County and graduated from Grantsville High School and Brigham Young University.

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