Salt Lake City, often shortened to Salt Lake or SLC, is the capital and the most populous city of the U.S. state of Utah. With a population of 189,899 as of the 2011 estimate, the city lies in the Salt Lake City metropolitan area, which has a total population of 1,145,905. Salt Lake City is further situated in a larger urban area known as the Wasatch Front, which has a population of 2,328,299. It is one of only two major urban areas in the Great Basin (the other being Reno, Nevada), and the largest in the Intermountain West.
The city was founded in 1847 by Brigham Young, Isaac Morley, George Washington Bradley and several other Mormon followers, who extensively irrigated and cultivated the arid valley. Due to its proximity to the Great Salt Lake, the city was originally named "Great Salt Lake City"—the word "great" was dropped from the official name in 1868. Although Salt Lake City is still home to the headquarters of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church), fewer than half the population of Salt Lake City proper are members of the LDS Church today.
Immigration of international LDS members, mining booms, and the construction of the first transcontinental railroad initially brought economic growth, and the city was nicknamed the Crossroads of the West. It was traversed by the Lincoln Highway, the first transcontinental highway, in 1913, and presently two major cross-country freeways, I-15 and I-80, intersect in the city. Salt Lake City has since developed a strong outdoor recreation tourist industry based primarily on skiing, and was host to the 2002 Winter Olympics. It is the industrial banking center of the United States.
Famous quotes containing the words salt, lake and/or city:
“... the darkness,
Inviting to this house
Air from a field, air from a salt grave ...”
—Philip Larkin (19221986)
“Such were the first rude beginnings of a town. They spoke of the practicability of a winter road to the Moosehead Carry, which would not cost much, and would connect them with steam and staging and all the busy world. I almost doubted if the lake would be there,the self-same lake,preserve its form and identity, when the shores should be cleared and settled; as if these lakes and streams which explorers report never awaited the advent of the citizen.”
—Henry David Thoreau (18171862)
“Jews do not like the country, yes thank you, christians donot all like the city. Yes and thank you. There are no differences between the city and the country and very likely every one can be daily daily and by that timely.”
—Gertrude Stein (18741946)