Utah Department of Administrative Services

Division of Archives & Records Service

Series 4247

MX Coordination Office Governor's MX missile correspondence

Dates: 1979-1981.

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These records are housed in the Utah State Archives' permanent storage room.

Historical Note

An agency history is available.

Scope and Content

Consists of letters to Governor Scott Matheson from private citizens and other government officials and his replies to them. Clippings, magazine articles, and petitions are occasionally attached to individual letters.

As a whole, the correspondence illustrates the evolution of public opinion about the MX project. Correspondents usually offered suggestions and expressed support or opposition to the project in general, but they also frequently wanted to discuss specific social, environmental, and economic impacts of missile deployment in Utah and Nevada. The Governor's participation in the planning process can also be followed through this series.

Matheson's letters illustrate the evolution of his views on MX deployment in Utah as well, and his growing conviction that alternate missile basing sites and basing modes should be considered. At the beginning of the study, Governor Matheson stated: "The MX Missile System represents an important and essential addition to the United States Weapons stockpile, and Utah is proud to be involved as a possible missile site..." (Letter sent to Carlos Stern, Nov. 30, 1978, series 5420). This opinion first voiced in November 1978 changed markedly, and by March 1980, he was saying: that "with regard to the proposed basing mode and deployment area, I have serious unresolved concerns, questions, and reservations" (House Military Construction Subcommittee Testimony, March 26, 1980, series 5420). By the time the MX project had been abandoned by the federal government in October, 1981, the Governor was insisting that the Air Force provide a comprehensive and legal environmental impact assessment.

Governor Matheson became intimately involved in the administrative structure set up to evaluate the widespread impacts of MX deployment. As Governor he was a member of the MX Missile Task Force which established the Utah MX Coordination Office, and also the Bi-state Management Committee. His involvement with citizen groups, state agencies, military personnel, and elected officials made him increasingly aware of the enormous impacts that MX deployment in Utah would create, and made him also an effective spokesman for the interests of the state.

Arrangement

Chronological by date.

Related Records

Administrative records from the MX Coordination Office, Series 4246, contains replies made by individual coordinating office staff members to many of these same letters.

MX missile news articles from the MX Coordination Office, Series 4249, contains many articles about the Governor's involvement in the planning stages for MX deployment.

Draft environmental impact statements and technical reports from the MX Coordination Office, Series 4254, contains a report often cited by the Governor.

County detention centers' administrative records from the Department of Social Services. Division of Family Services., Series 5240, contains more information relating to the development of the MX project.

Custody History

After the Utah MX Coordination Office was closed in 1981, the State Office of Planning and Budget inherited the files and used them as a reference resource. Transfer to the Archives occurred in 1984.

Access Restrictions

This series is classified as Public.

Preferred Citation

Cite the Utah State Archives and Records Service, the creating agency name, the series title, and the series number.

Processing Note

Processing of the GOVERNOR MATHESON'S MX MISSILE CORRESPONDENCE was completed in 1987 by Brent Brinkerhoff.

Indexing Terms

  • Intercontinental ballistic missile bases—Utah.
  • MX (Weapons system).
  • Nuclear arms control—Utah.

Container List

BOX FOLDER DESCRIPTION
1 1 1978, January-December
1 2 1979, January-July
1 3 1979, August-December
1 4 1980, January, 1-31
1 5 1980, February, 1-5
1 6 1980, February, 6-10
1 7 1980, February, 11-15
1 8 1980, February, 16-20
1 9 1980, February, 21-25
1 10 1980, February, 26-28
1 11 1980, March, 1-5
1 12 1980, March, 6-10
1 13 1980, March, 11-15
1 14 1980, March, 16-20
1 15 1980, March, 21-25
1 16 1980, March, 26-31
1 17 1980, April, 1-5
1 18 1980, April, 6-10
1 19 1980, April, 1-15
1 20 1980, April, 16-20
1 21 1980, April, 21-25
1 22 1980, April, 26-30
1 23 1980, May, 1- 5
1 24 1980, May, 6-10
1 25 1980, May, 11-15
1 26 1980, May, 16-20
1 27 1980, May, 21-25
1 28 1980, May, 26-31
1 29 1980, June, 1- 9
1 30 1980, June, 10-19
1 31 1980, June, 20-30
1 32 1980, July, 1-15
1 33 1980, July, 16-31
1 34 1980, August, 1-15
1 35 1980, August, 16-31
1 36 1980, September, 1-15
1 37 1980, September, 16-30
1 38 1980, October
1 39 1980, November
1 40 1980, December
1 41 1981, January
1 42 1981, February
1 43 1981, March, 1-9
1 44 1981, March, 10-19
1 45 1981, March, 20-31
1 46 1981, April, 1- 9
1 47 1981, April, 10-19
1 48 1981, April, 20-25
1 49 1981, April, 26-30
1 50 1981, May, 1-9
1 51 1981, May, 10-19
1 52 1981, May, 20-31
1 53 1981, June
1 54 1981, July, 1-15
1 55 1981, July, 16-31
1 56 1981, August
1 57 1981, September
1 58 1981, October
1 59 Undated Correspondence
1 60 Undated Correspondence