Last Update October 15th, 2019
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Don't you just love reading interesting facts about LDS temples? In this post you're going to learn every temple fact I could find about each of the 17 LDS temples in Utah.
Pretty soon, we'll have new temples in Orem, Taylorsville, Layton, Saratoga Springs, Tooele, and Washington County. Once these have been completed, I'll update this post with any interesting facts.
Because this article is extremely long, I've provided you with a table of contents. Clicking on a temple will take you directly to that part of the page that talks about it.
Table of Contents:
Bountiful Utah Temple
Dedicated on 1/8/95 by President Howard W. Hunter.
- This temple had 28 dedicatory sessions that were attended by 201,655 people. This is the most people that have ever been to a temple dedication. source
- The Bountiful Utah Temple was the first temple built in Davis County, Utah and the 8th built in Utah.
- The floor plan was also used for the Mount Timpanogos Temple. It has different spires though.
- President Howard W. Hunter only dedicated two temples during the short time that he was the president of the Church. Those two temples were the Bountiful Utah Temple and the Orlando Florida Temple.
- 7,500 people went to the groundbreaking ceremony for the Bountiful Utah Temple. Some people had to sit on the hillside because of how many people were there. Another 2,500 people viewed the ceremony from remote video.
- At the groundbreaking of the Bountiful Utah Temple, President Gordon B. Hinckley implied that there would be temples coming soon to Hong Kong China, Preston England, and Hartford Connecticut. He said that nothing would be announced officially until they had sites for them though.
- This temple was open for six weeks for the open house. 870,361 people came and walked through it. 45,000 people volunteered to run the open house.
- Angel Moroni was hit by lightning twice on May 22, 2016. Some of the gold leaf was cracked and pieces of the face and back of the fiberglass were removed. It was replaced on June 1, 2016. source You can see that here.
- Bethel white granite was used for the exterior facade of the Bountiful Utah Temple. It was from Sharon, Vermont which is where the Prophet Joseph Smith was born. source
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Brigham City Utah Temple
Dedicated on 9/23/12 by Boyd K. Packer, who, along with his wife, is a Brigham City native.
Cedar City Utah Temple
Dedicated on 12/10/17 by Henry B. Eyring.
- 17th temple in Utah.
- 159th temple worldwide.
- This temple has Presbyterian architecture, which was a style that the pioneers brought across the plains. An example of this is the cupola bearing angel Moroni. source
- There are two historic stained glass windows that are from the old Astoria Presbyterian Church in Queens, New York. source
Brigham Young sent descendants of pioneer settlers south in the 1850s to mine iron deposits in the hills of what would become Iron County. President Eyring said that this temple is a great tribute to the wonderful pioneers who came here. source
Dr. Richard Saunders, Dean of Library Services at SUU, said, "This temple includes design elements that reflect the community’s physical setting and culture. For instance, juniper branches are painted into ceiling corners, and the overall style reflects the straight, simple lines, the color schemes, and decor common to early homes in Iron County. The church was careful to design and decorate a building that reflects the heritage of the permanent settlers to this region.” source
- Joel Hill Johnson wrote the temple hymn High on a Mountain Top while he was living in Enoch, Utah which is a suburb of Cedar City, Utah. source
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Draper Utah Temple
Dedicated on 3/20/09 by Thomas S. Monson.
- 129th temple worldwide.
- 12th temple in Utah.
- The Draper Utah temple has the largest sealing room and can seat up to 80 people.
- The Utah state flower, the Sego Lily, is a theme in the Draper Utah Temple. They are on the many panes of stained glass windows. Tom Holdman crafted these windows and they survived a fire in his art studio that ruined the entire structure. source
Jordan River Utah Temple
Dedicated by President Marion G. Romney 11/16/81
- 7th temple built in Utah.
- 20th temple worldwide.
- Went through extensive renovation in February of 2016.
- Only temple dedicated by President Marion G. Romney. source
- There are member who attended this temple's dedication who also attended the dedication of the Salt Lake Temple nearly 100 years earlier.
This temple has the tallest angel Moroni statue, which is 20 feet tall.
- The Jordan River temple is one of five temples to feature an Angel Moroni statue holding the plates. source for first and second fact
- The Oquirrh Mountain Temple and this temple were the first temples built in the same city, South Jordan.
- The Jordan River Utah Temple is the highest capacity temple in the Church with six ordinance rooms each seating 122 patrons. source
- 16 sealing rooms.
- This temple was originally named the Jordan River Temple, but is now the Jordan River Utah Temple. source
- For a long time the construction and maintenance of this temple was funded solely by donations from the local members. source
- There is a theme of tear drops which is seen on the spire and fence. source
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Logan Utah Temple
Dedicated on 5/17/1884 by President John Taylor.
- Does not have an angel Moroni
- 2nd temple built in Utah.
- Originally named the Logan Temple.
- Only temple dedicated by President John Taylor.
- Interior was completely redone and President Spencer W. Kimball regretted the need to rebuild the interior because of the loss of pioneer craftsmanship. source
- Dedicated while Utah was a territory, before Statehood was granted, which was 1/4/1896.
- This temple was the first one to be built where you go room to room for the endowment. source
- The outside walls used to be a pink/off-white color to cover the rough-hewn, dark limestone. The paint started coming off in the early 1900s and now you can see the bare stone with no paint. source
- There was a fire on December 4, 1917 in the Logan Utah Temple. It was in the southeast staircase and ruined many windows and paintings. It also caused a lot of water damage and smoke damage. The fire started because of some electrical wiring. source
- There was renovation in 1976 in the ordinance rooms. It got new wallpaper that works for the motion-picture endowment presentation. source
- Heated sidewalks were added in 2009 to melt the snow.
- "As completion of the temple neared, women in the area were asked to make carpets for the temple, since commercially made carpet could not be bought in Utah at that time. The women spent two months working to hand make 2,144 square yards of carpet." source
- This temple was built completely by volunteers for 7 years from 1877 to 1884. It has five stories. source
Manti Utah Temple
Privately dedicated on 5/17/1888 by Wilford Woodruff and publicly dedicated by President Lorenzo Snow on 5/21/1888.
- does not have an angel moroni
- 3rd temple built in Utah.
- Originally named the Manti Temple
- This temple was built on the Manti Stone Quarry, which was infested with rattlesnakes. source
- Only temple dedicated by President Lorenzo Snow.
- Dedicated while Utah was a territory, before Statehood was granted.
- Minerva Teichert painted the mural in the World Room during a renovation in the 1940’s.
- The Manti Utah Temple is one of two temples that still employs live acting for presentation of the endowment. (The other is the Salt Lake Temple.) Individuals progress through these rooms: Creation Room, Garden Room, World Room, Terrestrial Room, and Celestial Room. source
- "The two spiral staircases in the Manti Temple are a marvel of design and craftsman ingenuity. It is one of less than a dozen free-standing spiral staircases in the United States. Built in the 1870-80's, by skilled pioneer craftsman, primarily from Scandinavia, the staircases has 151 steps that rise 76 vertical feet with no center support. The spiral staircase on the North circles clockwise and the one on the South circles counterclockwise." source
- Brigham Young said, “Here is the spot where the Prophet Moroni stood and dedicated this piece of land for a Temple site, and that is the reason why the location is made here, and we can’t move it from this spot.” source
- "The Scandinavian background of the workers was obvious in the construction techniques they used. In one part of the temple, a Norwegian boat builder was in charge of designing the ceiling. He had never built a large building before and was not sure how to go about it, so he simply used the design of a boat and turned it upside down." source
- This temple used to be the location for the Holy of Holies before the dedication of the Salt Lake Temple. After that, the room became a sealing room until the late 1970s when it closed. source
Until the 1960s, there used to be a tunnel under the east tower. Wagons and cars would go through it.sourceThe people of Manti used to joke around and say that the Manti Temple is the only one you don’t need a recommend to go through.source
- In 1928 the east tower was struck by lightning. The fire burned for three hours before it was extinguished. source
Monticello Utah Temple
Dedicated on 7/26/98 by Gordon B. Hinckley.
Gordon B. Hinckley introduced the idea of a smaller temple and the first one was in Monticello Utah (1998). At first it had an all-white Angel Moroni, but it was changed to a gold one because the white was very hard to see.
- 11th temple built in Utah.
- 53rd temple worldwide.
This was the quickest temple ever built. The construction took eight months and nine days.source
- This is one of the smallest temples and only has two ordinance rooms and two sealing rooms.
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Mount Timpanogos Utah Temple
Dedicated on 10/13/96 by Gordon B. Hinckley.
- 9th temple built in Utah.
- 49th temple worldwide.
- Gordon B. Hinckley said that this temple was built to relieve the heavy demands placed on the Provo Utah Temple, which was operating far beyond its designed capacity.
- At the groundbreaking ceremony, the location of the Madrid Spain Temple was announced.
The site where the Mount Timpanogos Utah Temple was built used to be a Church welfare farm.source
- The floor plan was adapted from the Bountiful, Utah temple plan. Other than the spires, the two temples are nearly identical. source
- This temple features keystones, star stones, sun stones, moon stones, and earth stones.
Ogden Utah Temple
Dedicated on 1/18/72 by President Joseph Fielding Smith. President Monson rededicated the updated temple on 9/21/14.
- First temple dedicated in Utah after Utah became a state.
- First temple built with 6 ordinance rooms. source
- "At the dedication of the Ogden Utah Temple, President Harold B. Lee finished the remaining one-third of the dedicatory prayer when President Joseph Fielding Smith became too weak from standing so long." source
- The original Ogden Utah Temple used to look like the Provo Utah Temple before it was redone. See the pictures of the temple before and after it was remodeled here.
- 5th temple built in Utah.
- When this temple was dedicated, it was the 14th temple.
Oquirrh Mountain Utah Temple
Dedicated on 8/23/09 by Thomas S. Monson.
- 13th temple in Utah.
- 130th temple worldwide.
- “Oquirrh” — Goshute Indian word meaning “wooded mountain” or “shining mountains” (pronounced “O-ker”). source
- "It is named Oquirrh Mountain because it was built on the base of the Oquirrh Mountain range. This mountain range is on the west side of the Salt Lake Valley." source
- "The beautiful centerpiece of the temple’s celestial room is a 15-foot-long chandelier made of nearly 20,000 pieces of Swarovski crystal." source
- From this temple you can also see three other temples. Those three are Jordan River, Draper, and the Salt Lake Temple.
- President Monson dedicated the temple on his 82nd birthday and the crowd sang him happy birthday. source
Church was canceled in Utah on August 23, 2009 so that members could go to this temple’s dedication without having anything get in the way. This was the first time this happened in Utah.source
- In June 2009, lightning struck the Angel Moroni statue atop the Oquirrh Mountain Utah Temple, damaging Moroni's trumpet, arm and face. A replacement statue was installed on Aug. 11, 2009, 10 days before the dedicatory services began, according to the Deseret News.
- This temple was the first temple to be built in the same city as another temple, which is the Jordan River Temple in South Jordan, Utah.
Payson Utah Temple
Dedicated on 6/7/15 by Henry B. Eyring.
Geniel Pino, an 81 year old widow, and many other women crocheted and donated beautiful altar cloths for the interior of the temple.source
- 3rd temple built in Utah County.
Payson and other nearby towns were where Ute Indians used to live.source
- A member donated the land to the church for them to build the temple on.
- There are flowers on the stained glass windows. At the bottom, they are buds and they turn into full blossoms as you look higher up.
- There are apple orchards in Payson and they are represented on the Celestial room’s furniture and on the stained glass windows.
The brides’ room has 200 year old chairs from a castle in England.source
This temple has 5 levels - bottom floor is the baptistry, the 2nd floor has the dressing rooms for endowed members, the 3rd floor has the chapel where you wait before you participate in an endowment session, the 4th floor is where the endowment session takes place and the Celestial room is, and finally, the 5th level has the room sealing rooms. Elder Kent F. Richards said, "There is a general significance that we tend to go up towards heaven as we get to the higher ordinances.”source
- In the baptistry, there is a mural that is a copy of the mural found in the Calgary Alberta Temple.
- This temple has 19 pieces of art that are original. A lot of those were made by local artists.
Provo City Center Temple
Dedicated on 3/20/16 by Dallin H. Oaks.
- 16th temple built in Utah.
- One of two temples that does not follow the typical naming convention for temples. For U.S. temples, the name of the temple is the city the temple is located in, followed by the state the temple is in. For temples outside the U.S., it's the same but followed by the country that the temple is in. For example, Calgary Alberta Temple. source
- This temple is brand new and was built from the ruins of the Provo Tabernacle.
- When the Provo Tabernacle was being excavated, the found stencil work on the walls beneath paint. The design of this stenciling was used on the walls of the bride’s dressing room.
This is the fourth temple that was built from a building that already existed. It was also the second to be built from a tabernacle. The first built from a tabernacle was the Vernal Utah Temple (1997).source
- More than half the temple is underground.
- There are three inscriptions of "Holiness to the Lord, the House of the Lord". They are found above the south underground entrance, above the south street level entrance, and above the east door.
This temple fulfills the prophetic words of Elder Holland that "like a phoenix out of the ashes" a new temple would be built "on the ground and out of the loving memory of our beloved tabernacle."source
- The Gothic Arches, found on the highest floor of the temple in the sealing and instruction rooms, are a unique feature of the Provo City Center Temple. This design is not found in any other LDS temple.
- This is one of three temples that has four corner towers surrounding the central tower. The other temples that feature this are the Oakland California Temple and the Cochabamba Bolivia Temple. same source as above
- This temple has finials, art glass, and other things that were salvaged from the Provo Tabernacle. same source as above
The main entrance of this temple is underground. This is the only temple in the world with that.source
- This temple has a recurring theme of the columbine flower. It is a flower that the Mormon settlers would have seen in the mountains in Utah County as it is native to the Rocky Mountains.
"A 4-inch-high, hand-carved piece of the original tabernacle pulpit is now in the temple's chapel. The tabernacle’s pulpit was removable and had been moved for a musical performance when the fire occurred in late December 2010."source
- When you go in the ground-level entrance there is a big stained-glass piece of work that has the Savior as a shepherd. It is behind the reception desk. 120 years ago it was in a New York Presbyterian church. A member of the LDS church bought the damaged pieces and donated them to the temple. They were then fixed and restored for use in the Provo City Center Temple.
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Provo Utah Temple
Dedicatory prayer written by President Joseph Fielding Smith was read by President Harold B. Lee on 2/9/72.
- 6th temple built in Utah.
- The most used temple in the world, due to BYU and the MTC being within the temple district.
- This temple has more endowment sessions performed every year than any other temple. It has had the most every year since it opened.
- Originally, this temple did not have an Angel Moroni and the spire was painted gold. This changed when the temple was renovated in 2003 though. The spire was painted white and Angel Moroni was added. source
- Has 6 ordinance rooms and 12 sealing rooms.
- This temple was built because the temples in Salt Lake, Manti, and Logan were getting so overcrowded. source
- Often goes by nicknames such as cupcake and spaceship.
This temple was designed to look like and represent the cloud of pillar of fire that helped guide the Israelites under the shadow of Mount Sinai.source
Salt Lake Temple
Dedicated on 4/6/1893 by President Wilford Woodruff.
Salt Lake Temple facts:
- largest temple in the world
- took 40 years to build
- One of three temples dedicated on April 6th (St. George and Palmyra New York are the others).
- When the Latter-Day Saints first got to the Salt Lake Valley, Brigham Young said this was where they would put the temple after he put his cane in the dry ground. This happened on July 28, 1847. source
- The construction of the temple was discussed with the Saints at General Conference in 1852.
- Dedicated while Utah was a territory, before Statehood was granted.
- The walls at the base of this temple are nine feet thick and the top walls are six feet thick. This was because Brigham Young wanted to make sure that the temple would last through the Millennium.
- Building the Salt Lake Temple was fulfilling Isaiah’s prophecy- "And it shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the Lord’s house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow unto it" (Isaiah 2:2). source
- Before getting to the Celestial room, you go through four ordinance rooms.
- This temple still does live acting for the endowment presentation.
- This is the first temple to have an Angel Moroni statue where he is standing.
- The first plans for this temple had an Angel Moroni on the east central spire and another one on the west side.
- At the base and meridian on the southeast corner of Temple Square there is a little statue. It was decided on August 3, 1847 that this was the point where the streets were named and numbered. source
- Sandstone was originally used for the foundation. During the Utah War, the foundation was buried and the lot made to look like a plowed field to prevent unwanted attention from federal troops. After tensions eased in 1858 and work on the temple resumed, it was discovered that many of the foundation stones had cracked, making them unsuitable for use. Although not all of the sandstone was replaced, the inadequate sandstone was replaced. source
- The Salt Lake Temple has stone from Little Cottonwood Canyon. It was first brought into Salt Lake by ox, then by railroad. source
- Wedding parties used to happen behind the sealing rooms inside the temple's walls.
- If you were visiting the temple for a wedding prior to the 20th century, you would use the east doors, which are no longer used.
- Brigham Young died before the temple finished building.
- This temple features a beehive, clasped hands, earthstones, sunstones, moonstones, starstones, cloudstones, shaking hands, an all seeing eye, towers, squares, circles, and Ursa Major (also known as The Big Dipper). Learn what these symbols mean here.
- One year before the dedication of this temple, there was a capstone ceremony. It was at this ceremony that the Hosanna shout was first done. It is now a part of all temple dedications. source
- The temple was damaged by a tornado in 1999, a bombing on 4/10/1910, and another bombing on 11/14/1962.
- 3-5 million tourists visit this temple each year. source
- The original cornerstones made of firestone were replaced by granite.
- There are rooms in the temple that are used for weekly meetings by the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. One of the rooms used for this is the Holy of Holies, which is not seen in other temples. source
- The temple's granite is from Little Cottonwood Canyon
- Truman O. Angell, the architect of the Salt Lake Temple, died before the temple finished. source
- Does not follow typical naming convention for temples, otherwise it would have been called the Salt Lake City Utah Temple.
- Lorenzo Snow gave Joseph Henry Dean, one of the temple's carpenters, the position of temple custodian and said, "we’re going to give you this position as custodian of the temple and you can go on and spend your remaining days, nights and life in the temple.” source
- Because the temple could be affected by a future earthquake, 2019 renovations will include installing base isolation systems in an attempt to save it. source
- On the southeast corner of Temple Square there is a marker that says “United States Meridian Base 1869”. United States officials used this spot for an observatory that determined the Mountain Daylight time zone. It also established the standard time throughout the U.S. source
- This was the first temple to have an Angel Moroni statue. It is a representation of the Book of Mormon. source
- Currently undergoing renovation which should be finished in 2024. Read about the renovation plans here.
- There are sculpture niches next to 2 doors on the east side. Memorial statues of Joseph Smith and Hyrum Smith were made to go in these niches. They were there for many years, but were moved to the Joseph Smith Memorial Gardens on June 27, 1911. They were originally in the niches because the Jerusalem Temple’s entrance was guarded by priests.
Cyrus Edwin Dallin sculpted this temple’s Angel Moroni statue He is not a member of the church.source
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St. George Utah Temple
Dedicated on 4/6/1877 by Daniel H. Wells.
- Does not have an angel Moroni
- The oldest temple used by the Church.
- Because the temple sits above underground springs, a solid foundation needed to be built. Workers took lava rock from a nearby mesa and pounded it into the ground with a cannon filled with lead, weighing close to a thousand pounds. The foundation took more than two years to complete. source
- Women used silk from Utah to make carpets for the hallways and fringe for the pulpits and altars.
- The men who worked on this temple received half of their pay in cash and the other half in Tithing Office checks. The local members helped one out of every 10 days as tithing labor. source
- The temple's white exterior symbolizes purity and light.
- General Conference in 1877 was held at this temple.
- One of three temples dedicated on April 6th.
- There were two times that Wilford Woodruff was in this temple and had the United State’s Founding Father’s come to him and ask why their temple work had not been completed yet. source
- Dedicated while Utah was a territory, before Statehood was granted.
- The temple originally had a “squatty” tower that Brigham Young did not like. It was struck by lightning and burned down after Brigham Young passed away. The tower was rebuilt to be taller and more elegant looking.
- Brigham Young disliked the original "squatty" tower of the St. George Utah Temple. Shortly after his death, it was struck by lightning and burned to its base. The tower was rebuilt taller and with a more elegant shape. source
- Has 18 sealing rooms, which is the most out of any temple. source
- The founding fathers came to Wilford Woodruff in the St. Gorge temple and ask that their work be done.
- From the Journal of Discourses we learn that Wilford Woodruff was baptized in proxy for signers of the Declaration of Independence, and fifty other eminent men, making one hundred in all, including John Wesley, Columbus, and others. Wilford Woodruff baptized Brother McAllister for every President of the United States except Martin Van Buren, James Buchannan and Ulysses S Grant. The signers of the Declaration of Independence also had their endowments done for them. source
- This temple was the last one to be dedicated while Brigham Young was the prophet. It was also the first temple to perform endowments for the dead. source
- No one died during the temple's construction. Miraculously, John Burt fell 70 feet from the scaffolding and was not expected to live. He did and was back at the building site within two weeks.
- The temple will undergo renovation on November 4, 2019 and is expected to be completed in 2022. See what the renovation plans are here.
David Henry Cannon, Jr said Brigham Young said, "We will wall it up and leave it here for some future use but we cannot move the foundation this spot was dedicated by the Nephites they could not built it the temple but we can and will build it for them."source
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Vernal Utah Temple
Dedicated on 11/2/97 by President Gordon B. Hinckley.
- The Uintah Stake Tabernacle was dedicated in 1907 by Joseph F. Smith. He said that he “would not be surprised if the day would come when a temple would be built in your midst here.” This became true when it turned into the temple. There was a 7 year old at the dedication, Porter Merrill, who heard him say that and was also at the temple dedication. source
The building of this temple used to be the Uintah Stake Tabernacle. It was the first time a building was converted into a temple.source
- In building the temple. 16,000 bricks were taken from the Reader Home to replace cracked and chipped bricks on the temple facade.
- Granite plaques on the temple show the numbers 1901, 1997, and 1907. The first refers to the year that the walls and roof were completed, the second refers to the dedicated, and lastly the year the temple was dedicated. source
- The Angel Moroni statue was first painted gold and later the paint was removed and given a finish of gold leaf.
Are there any facts that I missed? Let me know below in the comments. I'd like to hear from you.
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