Utah Department of Administrative Services

Division of Archives & Records Service

Series 1650

District Court (Third District : Salt Lake County) Minute books

Dates: i 1896-1967.

89 microfilm reelsSkip to Containers

These records are housed in the Utah State Archives' permanent storage room.

Historical Note

An agency history is available.

Scope and Content

In 1896, the new state constitution provided for a court system to include a supreme court, district courts, and justices courts. The third district was assigned three justices. The county clerk kept the minute books for the district court in each county. This series reflects the minutes of the court in and for Salt Lake County. While Tooele, Summit, and Daggett counties were part of the third district at various times during this period, minutes for those counties are not included in this series.

The minutes contain information on civil and criminal cases and their related legal and procedural issues. Except in the case of contested estates or issues such as life estates and joint tenancy where it became a civil case, probate minutes were kept separately. Juvenile cases were separated after the creation of a juvenile court in 1901. Initial procedural rules for the operation of the third district court are explained in Book 2, pp. 123-128; amendments were made later as needed. Civil and criminal cases were distributed among all the district judges for the county. As case loads increased, additional judges were added to the district, and judges from other districts could be asked to hear cases in the third district if needed. Separate minutes are kept for each judge starting about 1900.

The minute books document the daily proceedings of the third district court in Salt Lake County, but they are not transcripts of court cases. Business matters include identifying the court site and officers present, selecting or dismissing jurors, and scheduling and assigning cases. These are followed by a summary of proceedings for each case heard that day. By the end of the 1960s, keeping up the minute books became infeasible, and minute entries were made part of the individual case files.

A typical case will span multiple dates. Further, a single case might have transactions recorded under more than one judge. For example, the preliminary motions might be under one judge, with the trial assigned to another; reassignment of cases also occurred on occasion. Numerous entries may be found concerning various motions without alluding to the original charge. In particular, with civil cases, the original complaint is not always specified. The details were recorded in information or indictment record rather than in the minutes. Only volume 41 has those records bound with the minutes.

A case will include an indictment for a charge or indication of a complaint filed; demurrers, in which a defendant does not deny the charge but maintains it is not significant enough to justify legal action; dismissals; continuances; court orders or other motions; a statement that the case was presented, including names of those testifying, but rarely alluding to the nature of the testimony; the findings; and precise sentencing or settlement. The most information presented occurs in various forms of property disputes (eg. receivership, foreclosure, mining claims, estate settlement, water rights) where settlement details the property and its sale or distribution. More information than usual is also present in cases where the jury was asked to assign percentage of contributory negligence or resolve multiple questions in its findings.

Cases include those for murder (among them the initial trial of Joseph Hillstrom, also known as Joe Hill, found in vol. 26), larceny, robbery, burglary, assault, rape, riot, polygamy, gambling, narcotics, sodomy, child abuse, prostitution, etc. Applications for liquor licenses proliferate in the teens followed by prosecutions for liquor law violations in the 1920s after the enactment of Prohibition. Traffic violations of varying severity are common later.

Monetary cases include forgery, embezzlement , and bad check writing. Also included are receivership, garnishment of wages, debt, foreclosure, dissolutions of corporation or their withdrawal from the state, and tax commission liens. Bank and loan company liquidations appear repeatedly in the 1930s. The issues involved in many civil cases are difficult to determine but do include property disputes, wages disputes, and liability claims.

Divorce, alimony, and child support (including bastardy) cases are common throughout. A spurt of requests for issuance of marriage licenses without a blood test follow the 1941 law mandating that procedure. Commitments to state institutions (eg. reform school/industrial school, training school, asylum/mental hospital, tuberculosis sanitorium) are also present throughout.

The district courts had the power to grant citizenship. The process included two witnesses testifying to the applicant's character, renouncing foreign allegiance, and taking an oath of allegiance to the United States constitution. The applicant's name, the names of his witnesses, his native country and current county of residence are noted in the minutes. Applicants almost always are, but at first did not need to be, residents of Salt Lake County.

Most cases are exercises of original jurisdiction but do include appeals from county, justice of the peace courts, and after 1901, municipal courts. Occasionally reciprocal agreements and extradition procedures involving other states appear.

Arrangement

Chronological by date.

Volumes are arranged in rough chronological order. After 1900, separate volumes are kept for individual judges, so several volumes will have overlapping dates. Until the 1960s, the volumes are in numerical order. After that date, minutes are no longer kept in numbered volumes. The rough chronological order continues, but blocks of entries were sometimes filmed out of order. Entries within the blocks are in chronological order; rarely they are filmed in reverse. Book 32 is missing but creates no apparent gap in the sequence. Consult the attached inventory.

Related Records

Civil case files from the District Court (Third District : Salt Lake County), Series 1622, documents proceedings of civil cases.

Territorial minute books from the District Court (Third District), Series 1649, record third district court minutes for the territorial period, while minutes produced after 1896 are found in this series.

Criminal registers of actions from the District Court (Third District : Salt Lake County), Series 3253, documents the proceedings of each case.

Naturalization record books from the District Court (Third District : Salt Lake County), Series 3573, contain naturalization records related to the hearings noted in the minutes.

Civil case files (sealed) from the District Court (Third District : Salt Lake County), Series 12628, document proceedings in civil case files

Citizenship certificate stubs from the District Court (Third District : Salt Lake County), Series 85112, note the naturalization hearings whose summaries are included in these minutes.

Additional Forms

This series is available on microfilm.

Access Restrictions

This series is classified as Public.

Preferred Citation

Cite the Utah State Archives and Records Service, the creating agency name, the series title, and the series number.

Indexing Terms

  • Trials (Murder)--Utah.
  • Trials (Rape)--Utah.
  • Trials (Larceny)--Utah.
  • Trials (Burglary)--Utah.
  • Trials (Assault and battery)--Utah.
  • Trials (Embezzlement)--Utah.
  • Actions and defenses--Utah--Salt Lake County.
  • Tax liens--Cases--Utah.
  • Insane--Commitment and detention--Utah.
  • Corporation law--Cases--Utah.

Container List

REEL VOLUME DATE DESCRIPTION
1 1 1896 N/A
2 1 1896 N/A
2 2 1896 N/A
2 3 1896-1897 N/A
3 3 1897 N/A
3 4 1897 N/A
4 4 1897 N/A
4 5 1897-1898 N/A
4 6 1898-1899 N/A
5 6 1899-1900 N/A
5 7 1900 N/A
6 7 1900-1901 STEWART
6 8 1901-1903 HALL
6 9 1901-1902 MORSE
7 9 1902-1903 MORSE
7 10 1901-1903 STEWART
7 11 1903 MORSE
8 11 1903-1906 MORSE
8 12 1903-1904 HALL
9 12 1904-1906 HALL/ARMSTRONG
9 13 1906-1906 STEWART/RITCHIE
9 14 1906 ARMSTRONG
10 14 1906-1909 ARMSTRONG
10 15 1906-1909 LEWIS
10 16 1906 MORSE
11 16 1906-1908 MORSE
11 17 1903-1905 LEWIS
12 17 1905-1906 LEWIS
12 18 1906-1909 RITCHIE
12 19 1908-1909 MORSE
13 19 1909-1910 MORSE
13 20 1909-1911 LEWIS
14 20 1911 LEWIS
14 21 1910-1912 LEWIS
14 22 1909-1911 ARMSTRONG
15 22 1911-1912 ARMSTRONG
15 23 1909-1912 RITCHIE
16 24 1911-1914 LOOFBOUROW
16 25 1912-1913 MORSE
17 26 1913-1915 RITCHIE
17 27 1913-1915 MORSE
18 28 1912-1915 ARMSTRONG
18 29 1911-1912 LEWIS
19 29 1912-1915 LEWIS
19 30 1915-1916 RITCHIE
20 30 1916 RITCHIE
20 31 1913-1916 LOOFBOUROW
20 32 1915 N/A
20 33 1915 MORSE
21 33 1915-1917 MORSE/BROWN
21 34 1915-1918 ARMSTRONG/EVANS
22 35 1916-1918 RITCHIE/BRAMEL
22 36 1915-1917 LEWIS/GOODWIN
23 36 1917-1918 GOODWIN/PORTER/TOBIN
23 37 1918-1919 EVANS
24 38 1917-1920 STEPHENS
24 39 1917-1918 BROWN
25 39 1918-1920 BROWN
25 40 1918-1920 BRAMEL
26 41 1919-1920 TOBIN
26 41 1917-1920 INDICTMENT RECORD
26 42 1920-1921 EVANS
26 42 1919 MCCARTHY
27 42 1919-1920 MCCARTHY/STRINGFELLOW
27 43 1920-1924 STRINGFELLOW/IVERSON
28 43 1924-1925 IVERSON
28 44 1920-1924 TOBIN/BARNES
28 45 1921-1922 WIGHT
29 45 1922-1924 WIGHT
29 46 1920-1922 RITCHIE
30 46 1922-1923 RITCHIE
30 47 1921-1923 HANSON
31 47 1923-1924 HANSON
31 48 1921-1924 MCCREA
31 49 1923-1925 RITCHIE
32 49 1925-1927 RITCHIE
32 50 1924-1926 HANSON
33 51 1924-1927 MATHISON
33 52 1925-1926 WIGHT
34 52 1926-1929 WIGHT
34 53 1925-1928 MCCREA
35 53 1928-1929 MCCREA
35 54 1925-1929 MARKS
36 55 1926-1929 HANSON
36 56 1927-1928 RITCHIE
37 56 1928-1929 RITCHIE
37 57 1927-1929 MATHISON
37 58 1929 MOFFAT
38 58 1929-1930 MOFFAT
38 59 1929-1930 MCCONKIE
39 59 1930-1931 MCCONKIE
39 60 1929-1931 MCDONOUGH
40 60 1931 MCDONOUGH
40 61 1929-1932 BRAMEL
40 62 1929-1930 WOLFE
41 62 1930-1932 WOLFE
41 63 1929-1932 MCKINNEY
42 63 1932 MCKINNEY
42 64 1930-1932 MOFFAT
42 65 1931-1933 MCCONKIE
43 65 1933-1934 MCCONKIE
43 66 1931-1934 MCDONOUGH
44 66 1934 MCDONOUGH
44 67 1932 MOFFAT
44 67 1932 BRAMEL
44 68 1932-1934 WOLFE
45 69 1933-1934 THURMAN
45 70 1933-1934 SCHILLER
46 70 1934-1935 SCHILLER
46 71 1933-1935 MCKINNEY
46 72 1935-1937 SCHILLER
47 72 1937 SCHILLER
47 73 1935-1938 EVANS
48 74 1935-1938 THURMAN
48 75 1935-1936 MCDONOUGH
49 75 1936-1939 MCDONOUGH
49 76 1935-1937 MCKINNEY
50 76 1937-1938 MCKINNEY
50 76 1938-1941 BAKER
50 77 1935-1937 MCCONKIE
51 77 1937-1938 MCCONKIE
51 78 1938-1940 MCCONKIE
51 78 1940-1942 LEVERICH
52 79 1938-1941 SCHILLER
52 80 1937-1938 EVANS
53 80 1938-1941 EVANS
53 81 1939-1940 THURMAN
54 81 1940-1941 THURMAN
54 82 1939-1944 BRONSON
55 82 1944-1946 BRONSON
55 83 1941-1944 BAKER
56 83 1944-1945 BAKER
56 84 1941-1945 ELLETT
57 84 1945 ELLETT
57 85 1941-1945 CROCKETT
58 85 1945-1946 CROCKETT
58 86 1941 EVANS
58 86 1942-1944 FAUST
58 86 1943 LEVERICH
58 86 1944 HENDERSON
59 86 1944-1946 HENDERSON
59 87 1944-1947 VAN COTT
60 87 1947-1948 VAN COTT
60 88 1945-1949 BAKER
60 89 1945-1947 ELLETT
61 89 1947-1949 ELLETT
61 90 1946-1948 JEPPSON
62 90 1948-1949 JEPPSON
62 91 1946-1950 CROCKETT
63 91 1948-1949 CROCKETT
63 92A 1946-1948 HOGENSON
63 93 1948-1950 VAN COTT
64 92B 1948-1950 HOGENSON
65 93 1950-1953 VAN COTT
65 93 1949-1951 BAKER
65 94 1951-1954 BAKER
66 94 1951-1954 BAKER
66 95 1949-1950 JEPPSON
67 95 1950-1953 JEPPSON
67 96 1949-1951 ELLETT
68 96 1951-1954 ELLETT
68 97 1950-1953 LARSON
69 97 1953-1955 LARSON
69 98 1950-1954 LEWIS
70 98 1954-1955 LEWIS
70 99 1953-1957 JEPPSON
70 100 1954 VAN COTT
71 100 1954-1957 VAN COTT
72 101 1954-1957 ELLETT
72 102 1955-1956 LEWIS
72 102 1956 LEWIS
73 102 1956 BAKER
73 103 1955-1958 LARSON
74 103 1958 LARSON
74 104 1956-1959 HANSON
75 104 1965-1966 HANSON
75 N/A 1959-1960 LARSON
76 N/A 1964-1965 HANSON
77 N/A 1966 CROFT
77 N/A 1965 N/A
78 N/A 1966 CROFT
79 N/A 1963 JEPPSON
80 N/A 1966 JEPPSON
80 N/A 1965 N/A
80 N/A 1964 N/A
80 N/A 1963 N/A
81 N/A 1964-1965 ANDERSON
82 N/A 1965-1966 ANDERSON
83 N/A 1964 SNOW
84 N/A 1965 SNOW
84 N/A 1964 N/A
85 N/A 1965 SNOW
86 N/A 1966 SNOW
86 N/A 1965 N/A
87 N/A 1967 ELLETT
87 N/A 1966 N/A
87 N/A 1965 N/A
87 N/A 1964 N/A
87 N/A 1963 N/A
88 N/A 1965 VAN COTT
88 N/A 1964 N/A
89 N/A 1966 FAUX
89 N/A 1965 N/A
89 N/A 1964 N/A
89 N/A 1963 N/A