Salt Lake City, capital of the state of Utah, southeast of the Great Salt Lake, at the foot of the Wasatch Mountains, with a population of 160,000.
The city fulfills an important function as an administrative (seat of the federal government) and commercial center (mainly wholesale; annual Utah State Fair). In addition to manufacturing products based on locally extracted ores (copper), the industry includes petroleum refining, tobacco and food industry, manufacturing of electronic equipment, military equipment and (agricultural) machinery.
The city is also a center of tourism. Airport. Educationally, there are the University of Utah (1850), Westminster College (1875) and a mining college. Salt Lake City is best known as the headquarters of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons); the Mormon Temple (1853-1893) and Tabernacle (completed 1867; seats 8,000) are among the most important buildings along with the Capitol. The Church’s genealogical database is also world famous. Utah Museum of Fine Arts.
The first settlement was established in July 1847, when Brigham Young arrived here with groups of settlers from the Mormon sect. A conflict with the government in Washington led to a complete eviction of the city by order of Young in 1858, but the dispute was settled and the population soon returned.
Tension between Mormons and dissenters dominated society for a long time, especially as long as polygamy was officially tolerated. Only after this was no longer the case and after the admission of Utah as a state to the Union (1896) did relations improve and the city flourished. The 2002 Winter Olympics took place in Salt Lake City.