Saturday, August 6, 2016


Black Rock Beach

As a child my family Mom, Dad, kids and we had 5 then Amy, Leona, me (Camilla), Ensign and Myrle - Would take frequent trips to the great Salt Lake - to go swimming.  I remember thinking how great I was because I could sit up right in the water and not sink.  Dad told us not to splash the water in our eyes or drink it because it would hurt.  We were at Black Rock a beach resort and it had a big wooden tub filled with fresh water.  It was big - or I was small.  One time I got under the water and got salt water in my face and throat.  Dad picked me up by the seat of my swimming suit and dunked me up and down in the fresh water in the wooden tub.  Boy what a relief.  To get all that salt water off.  When we would go home we would all hang our salty swim suits on the clothes line and mom would turn the hose on them to wash out the salt.  [If not rinsed our suits would dry stiff as boards.] At that time early 1930's Great Salt Lake was a wonderful each resort with at least three separate beach resorts to go to.  We went to the beach at Black Rock frequently as a family.  (From hand written Journal History of Camilla Smith Wood.)  

During the Taylor era Heber C. Kimball's old ranch house was used as a hotel, and the resort had swings and a merry-go-round, pulled by a horse.

Black Rock was opened by H.J. Faust in 1876, but this resort didn't catch on for long. Black Rock was located a few miles northeast of Lake Point. It went out of business several time. Alonzo Hyde, President John Taylor's son-in-law and his son David John Tayor took over Black Rock in 1880.  The larger and grander Saltair resort opened in 1893 and put Black Rock out of business by 1895.  But Black Rock was resurrected for a time in 1933 and enjoyed frequently by the Smith family. Saltair was described as the "biggest amusement value in the world" during the 1930s. Camilla's mom and dad had honeymooned at Saltair in 1918.  (See: Deseret News, Resorts flourished at Great Salt Lake During 1800's, March 29, 1989.)

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