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Posted 24 Feb 2001   For week ended December 29, 2000
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Sent on Mormon-News: 03Jan01

By University of Utah Press

U of U Press History of Utah Printing Released

SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH -- Utah's first printing press arrived in Salt Lake Valley in 1849, barely two years after the first settlers. Purchased by printer W. W. Phelps at the behest of Mormon leaders, the press was initially the church's private venture but also became a tool to project political interests onto the national stage. The first document produced was a general communique to the church at large. Other early jobs included the second printing of the Constitution of the State of Deseret, part of an early, unsuccessful statehood bid, and the first issues of the Deseret News.

Printing in Deseret is a concise narrative history of the advent of printing in the state, and of the earliest printed documents, or incunabula, created during the initial settlement years. It also includes a bibliographic history of the press, chronicling more than fifty printed items, most never before described.

Advance praise for Printing in Deseret:

"The bibliographic description of early Utah imprints is unsurpassed in its thoroughness of coverage and descriptive detail."
-George Miles, curator, Yale Collection of Western Americana

"Thoughtful, wide ranging in scope, and painstakingly detailed, Printing in Deseret, makes a notable contribution to the study of printing's evolution in the nineteenth century American West."
-Peter J. Blodgett, curator, Western Historical Manuscripts, Huntington Library

Richard L. Saunders received the Dialogue Writing Award for History and Biography in 1996, he is currently the curator of Special Collections and Archives at the Paul Meek Library, University of Tennessee at Martin.

Mormons, Economy, Politics, and Utah's Incunabula, 1849-1851
By Richard L. Saunders
Cloth $35.00 215 pp., 6 x 9

See also:

More about Richard L. Saunders' "Printing in Deseret: Mormons, Economy, Politics, and Utah's Incunabula, 1849-1851" at


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