Utah State Parks Anniversary

  • Map of Historic Union Pacific Rail Trail

    Scenic Parks

    State parks located in Utah have some of the most beautiful and unique terrain in the country.
  • Photograph of cyclists on Antelope Island

    Recreational Parks

    Known for its sand dunes, snow, and mountains, Utah offers recreation for everyone.
  • Brochure from Anasazi Indian Village


    Learn about the rich history of the region at Utah’s State Park Museums.
Cover from 1959 Commission Report

In 1957, Utah’s legislature created the State Park and Recreation Commission to review the state parks and to formulate a long-term plan, “to the end that the health, happiness, recreational opportunities and wholesome enjoyment of life of the people may be further encouraged.” (Series 83155, Laws of Utah, 1957, Page 324)

In 1959, their official report (view online) outlined all of the existing parks and identified a number of new parks that could be created. Today, the language of the law has changed and our parks might not be exactly what the original commission imagined in the 1950s. Yet, as the Utah Division of Parks and Recreation celebrate their 60th anniversary, we searched our records to show how their agency has fulfilled that original mandate.

The following pages will take you through our current and previous state parks, providing images that highlighting the “wholesome enjoyment of life” millions of park visitors have been able to enjoy.


The images in this exhibit are part of the Administrative Records, Fort Deseret Records, Jacob Hamblin Home Records, Newspaper Clippings, Rockport State Park Records, State Park Pamphlets, Territorial Statehouse Park Records, Wasatach Mountain State Park Records, Willard Bay State Park Records, Yuba Lake State Park Records, and This is the Place Monument Display Photographs.

Images digitized by Avalon Snell. Exhibit interpretation by Avalon Snell, Rae Gifford, and Susan Mumford.

Originally published in October 2017.

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Page Last Updated July 29, 2020.