Town History Clawson


The settling of Clawson was somewhat later than that of most of the communities of Emery County. It was not until the spring of 1897 that the first homesteads were taken up. Two or three years previously a canal to carry water from Ferron creek had been started. This was completed in 1896. The little community was then called Kingsville. It lay about two miles east of the present Clawson. In these days people had to depend upon their own resources. They supplemented their diet with wild sego lily roots, bottle weed and grease wood greens, which grew in abundance on all uncultivated land and on the hills.

Much time had to be spent in keeping the canal and irrigation ditches in repair and battling grasshopper invasions. For about 5 years, during the winter, residents had to haul their drinking water from the Ferron creek at Paradise Ranch, three miles to the east.

The first school in the community was conducted in 1898 in the home of Guy King with Florence Barney as the teacher. She made the fourteen mile daily round trip from her home in Ferron on horseback.

About 1902, the president of Emery Stake, Reuben C. Miller, requested the Ferron Bishopric to come to Kingsville to help select a permanent town site. Bishop Hyrum Nelson and his counselors John L. Allred and George Petty responded to the call. There was some disagreement over where the site should be. Some wanted it where their homes now were and others thought it should be about two miles to the west, near the farms of John and James Westingskow.

Bishop Nelson, his counselors, and some others got into his buggy to look the situation over. He had a new buggy, harness and a lively team of horses, and when he came to the hill just east of where the church house stood, he stopped the team to look around, but when he went to start again, the clip on the singletree broke. Bishop Nelson got out of the buggy, wired it together and started out again, but had gone only a few feet when the other clip on the single tree broke off in the same manner.

So he got out of his buggy and said, “This is proof enough for me. This is the place.” When the people were informed of the decision, some were disatisfied, but Bishop Nelson told them that they had better move their houses up to the new location soon, because from observations he had made of the drainage in that locality, that by two years from then, some of the land would be so swampy that they wouldn’t be able to move their houses out, and this proved to be true. Everyone then agreed to move to the new town site, and since all had simple log houses this was possible. The land was purchased from the Westingkow brothers and laid off in blocks and in no time the houses were moved.

On October 25, 1904, Apostle Rudger Clawson of the Council of the Twelve, came and organized a ward. In his honor the name of the town was changed from Kingston to Clawson.