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5 Fun Facts About December 22 In Utah History

---Learn Every Day: UT Today In History Facts Texted Each Day - Text: history ut To: 618-270-4005---

1. On December 22, 1847, the first group of Mormon pioneers entered the Salt Lake Valley in what is now Utah. Led by Brigham Young, they had traveled over 1,000 miles from Nauvoo, Illinois to establish a new home for their religious community in the West.

2. December 22, 1933 marked the end of Prohibition in Utah, as the state officially repealed its own ban on alcohol sales and consumption. The end of Prohibition was celebrated with a statewide public holiday known as "Repeal Day."

3. In 1894, the closing night of the Salt Lake Opera House was held on December 22. The venue had been a cultural hub in the city since its opening in 1871, hosting performances by famous actors, musicians and other performers.

4. December 22, 1986 was the date of the deadliest avalanche in Utah history, which killed 11 people at the Alta ski resort in Little Cottonwood Canyon. The avalanche had been triggered by heavy snowfalls and high winds.

5. On December 22, 2003, Utah became the first state in the U.S. to legalize the use of firing squads as a backup method of capital punishment, in cases where lethal injection or other methods are deemed unconstitutional. The move was met with controversy and opposition from human rights groups.
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