Archives Month 2023 Digital Exhibits

Please enjoy this selection of food-related exhibits from institutions all over Utah!

Not Bees But Beavers

Irrigation was essential to early Mormons’ ability to survive in Utah. Learn how they labored physically, intellectually, and communally to make the desert bloom.

Credit: Utah Humanities

Dry Farming

Adequate water for crops proved to be a challenge for settlers throughout Utah. Those in Box Elder County established a strong dry-farming practice, due to inadequate water supply.

Credit: Utah Humanities

Keetley Farms

Keetley Farm was an agricultural settlement for Japanese Americans during World War II.

Credit: Utah Humanities

The Island Market: Logan’s Historic Corner Market

This exhibit showcases the Island Market, a corner store that has grown to become one of the oldest locally-owned grocery store locations in Logan, Utah. The building at 400 East and Center Street, originally built in 1919, houses this local corner market. Over the last 100 years, this market’s story has continued through revolutions in food preservation, changes in shopping habits, the rise of big-box stores, and the recent COVID-19 Pandemic. 

Credit: Utah State University Libraries

Food in the Desert

Before Utahns could take a trip to an all-inclusive market like Harmons, there were a variety of local grocers, butchers and bakers in Salt Lake City that brought the goods right to customers’ homes. These ornate receipts, called billheads, give a glimpse into the kinds of food and sundries that people were buying and how much they were paying for those goods.

Credit: Utah State Archives and Records Service

Utah Brews: The Untapped Story of Ogden’s Becker Brewing and Malting Company

Beer is probably not the first thing that comes to mind when people think of Utah, but Utah has a surprisingly rich brewing history. Of the more than forty breweries to call Utah home since Latter-day Saint settlement in 1847, the Becker Brewing and Malting Company of Ogden stands out as the longest continuously operating brewing company in the state, and one of the longest in the West. John S. Becker and his two sons, Gustav L. Becker and Albert E. Becker, established the Becker Brewing and Malting Company along the banks of the Ogden River in 1890.

Over the next seventy-five years, the brewery operated through feast and famine, weathering two world wars and even Prohibition. The costs of production and competition from larger breweries, however, eventually forced the Beckers to shut their doors in 1964. Utah Brews highlights this relatively forgotten chapter of Utah’s history through manuscripts and photographs held in Utah State University Libraries’ Special Collections & Archives division. So pull up a stool, belly up to the bar, and enjoy our cool, refreshing take on Ogden’s Becker Brewing and Malting Company.

Credit: Utah State University Libraries

HONR Think Tank: Food in Cache Valley

These exhibits were created by students in a three-part Honors “Think Tank” offering that explored the themes of agriculture, food, and land through science and social sciences. Students enrolled in one of three sections—Engineering, English, and Sociology in Spring 2016, and the class was team taught by Ryan Dupont, Douglas Jackson-Smith, and Joyce Kinkead.

Credit: Utah State University Libraries


Primary source sets of materials from Utah’s food history.

Credit: Utah Historical Society