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5 Fun Facts About May 13 In Utah History

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1. The Transcontinental Railroad was completed on May 10, 1869, but it wasn't until May 13th that the last spike was driven into the tracks at Promontory Summit, Utah. This event linked the eastern and western halves of the United States by rail, making travel and transportation much easier and faster.

2. On May 13, 1939, the coronation of King George VI and Queen Elizabeth was broadcast live on radio for the first time in the United States. The event was broadcast from London to an estimated 55 million listeners across the country.

3. The Levan Meteorite, one of the most significant meteorites ever found in Utah, fell to Earth on May 13, 1931. The meteorite weighed over 28 tons and was the largest of six fragments found in the area. Today, it is on display at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City.

4. On May 13, 1846, the Donner Party departed from Independence, Missouri, on their ill-fated journey to California. The group was comprised of 87 people, and only 45 survived after being stranded in the Sierra Nevada mountains for several months during the winter of 1846-1847.

5. Brigham Young was sustained as the second prophet and president of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on May 13, 1846. He succeeded Joseph Smith, who was killed by a mob in Carthage, Illinois, the previous year. Under Young's leadership, the Mormon pioneers traveled west and settled in the Salt Lake Valley.
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