Mormon History, 1849-50

[Utah Statehood] From the time the Mormon pioneers first arrived in Utah, a fervent goal of the vast majority of the region's residents was overcoming inferior territorial status by gaining statehood. Statehood was considered tantamount to independence in local affairs, with state officers chosen and answerable to the electorate, rather than where officials were outsiders appointed by outsiders, as was the case with territorial government. The first attempt at statehood in aimed to persuade Congress to admit the so-called state of Deseret, stretching from the Colorado Rockies to the Sierra Nevada Mountains. The nation's lawmakers, however, were not inclined to grant the Mormons control over such a vast domain, especially without the 60,000 eligible voters required for an area to be admitted as a state. 1849-50

[source: Utah History Encyclopedia: Utah Statehood,]

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