The Hyrum Dam: Building a Dam, Building a Community

The Hyrum Dam and Reservoir is located on the Southwest corner of Hyrum City. Today, it is a part of Hyrum State Park that receives thousands of visitors each year. Visitors come from all over Idaho and Utah each year to enjoy boating, swimming, fishing, and camping at the State Park. However, it has not always been this way. Hyrum’s founders originally named this place Paradise Hollow. It was a small valley where Hyrum’s founders established their early industries on the shores of the Little Bear River, and used the river to water their crops. This river was important to Hyrum’s founder’s survival, and over time became the lifeblood of the community. How did this space change so much? How did a river that Hyrum residents used for survival turn into a State Park used for leisure?

As you explore this exhibit, you will earn the story of how this place transformed. You will come to understand the different changes people made to this space, and how it affected their lives. The exhibit starts with the Little Bear River (the river the Hyrum Dam diverts) and its importance to Hyrum’s founders. Then, it continues with how the dam helped a community stricken with drought and unemployment during the 1920s and 1930s. Next, it highlights how the reservoir and dam became a part of the Hyrum community, and how that community started using it for recreation. Finally, it finishes with its final conversion into a State Park, and how it has become a popular tourist destination in northern Utah.

In the exhibit, you will each have the opportunity to add to the story. Be sure to fill out an index card, and post it up on the corkboard before you leave. Please share with us why you enjoy visiting the dam, and some of the experiences you’ve had while visiting it.