A Landing a Day

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Lynndyl, Utah

Posted by graywacke on November 27, 2009

First timer? In this (hopefully) once-a-day blog, I have my computer select a random latitude and longitude that puts me somewhere in the continental United States (the lower 48). I call this “landing.” I keep track of the watersheds I land in, as well as the town I land near. I do some internet research to hopefully find something of interest about my landing location. To find out more about A Landing A Day (like who “Dan” is and what the various numbers and abbreviations mean), please see “About Landing,” (and “Abbreviations” and “Cryptic Numbers”) above.

Dan –  Give me a break.  For the third time in the last 7 landings, it’s . . . UT; 65/50; 2/10 (2/12); 20; 155.0.  Nothing against UT per se, but enough is enough!  Anyway, here’s my landing map showing my proximity to Lynndyl and Tanner Ck:

As you may have suspected, I landed in the Tanner Ck watershed (for the 2nd time).  The poor Tanner just kind of peters out in the desert . . .

Here’s a somewhat closer landing view (that shows more map detail), showing proximity to the Sand Hills and Sand Mountain (more about that later):

Here’s my GE shot, which shows what appear to be sand dunes in the vicinity of my landing:

Staying with Google Earth for a moment, check out this GE shot showing Lynndyl (east of the highway).  Amazing “crop circle,” eh?  Shows what a little water’ll do.  For reference, it’s about 2/3 of a mile across:

Here’s some info on Lynndyl from OnLineUtah:

Lynndyl is a small agricultural community that was an early railroad junction. Folklore relates one story for the name origin. Apparently, while the railroad was under construction and before the area was named, someone from Salt Lake City asked a telegrapher where she was. While trying to think of an answer, she noticed “Lynn Mass” printed on her shoe, so she decided to answer that she was in Lynn  — so the junction now had a name.  However, when an application was filed at the post office, a Lynn already existed in Box Elder County so “-dyl” was added.

The “Lynn Mass” in the above paragraph refers of course to Lynn Massachusetts, which was known as the “shoe capital of the world” back in the latter half of the 19th century.  I found this very interesting piece about one Jan E. Matzeliger from Lynn:

Jan E. Matzeliger

Inventor of the Shoe-lasting Machine, Jan Matzeliger not only revolutionized the shoe industry but made Lynn, Massachusetts, the “shoe capital of the world.”

Matzeliger was born on September 15, 1852 in Dutch Guiana (now called Suriname).  His father was a white Dutchman and his mother was a black Surinamer. As a child, Jan worked in his father’s machine shop and developed an early interest in mechanics.

When he was 19, Jan set off to explore the world as a sailor. After two years, he arrived in the United States and began doing odd jobs in New England.  By 1876, Matzeliger had settled in Lynn, Massachusetts and taken a job in a shoe factory.  He worked ten-hour days there and spent his free time learning English (he was a native Dutch speaker).

Before Jan Matzeliger came along, no one thought it was possible to make shoes entirely by machine. An expert shoemaker could make about fifty pairs of shoes a day. When Matzeliger was thirty years old, he created a machine that could make 150 to 700 pairs a day!

Matzeliger’s shoe-lasting machine was so efficient that it cut the price of shoes in half after it went into production in 1885. Thanks to him, new shoes became much more affordable for average Americans.

The success of his invention came at a price to Jan Matzeliger.  Weakened by long working hours, he contracted tuberculosis and died when he was only 37 years old.

And now, to the Sand Hills and Sand Mountain noted on my second landing map (from Utah.com):

A plentiful sand source and strong prevailing winds have combined to create Little Sahara, one of the largest dune fields found in Utah. Most of the sand at Little Sahara is the result of deposits left by the Sevier River, which once flowed into ancient Lake Bonneville some 15,000 years ago. After the lake receded, the southwesterly winds that flow across the Sevier Desert picked up the exposed sand.

Sand Mountain, in the middle of the dune field, deflected the wind upward, causing it to slow and drop its load of sand. Sand particles, composed mostly of quartz, fell downwind among the sagebrush and juniper around Sand Mountain ultimately creating a 124-square-mile system of giant, free-moving, sand dunes.

Here’s a picture of Sand Mountain in the middle distance.  My landing spot is to the right out of this picture:

Here’s a closer view, showing some vehicles making their way up:

Here’s the view from the top:

And another view of the dunes:

I could find only two pictures of Lynndyl.  The first, of a gas station (which appears to be the main component of downtown Lynndyl):

And this, of a miserable bicycler who’s on a cross-country trip and would just as soon forget Lynndyl:

Here’s a great train shot.  OK, OK, so the train isn’t near my landing, but, as discussed in the caption below the picture, the train is on it’s way to Lynndyl.  Close enough . . .

With a mid-train helper cut in, a load of Colorado coal ascends the Price River Canyon grade just west of Kyune, Utah. This train originated along UP’s North Fork Subdivision at Somerset and it’s journey will end at the Intermountain Power generating station near Lynndyl, Utah.

I’ll close with this Lynndyl sunset:

That’ll do it.



© 2009 A Landing A Day


6 Responses to “Lynndyl, Utah”

  1. Jacquie Wilcock Pickens said

    I grew up in Lynndyl in the 1950’s. My Dad worked on the UP Railroad, my Mom worked in the “beanery” (diner). We went to school with 2 teachers for 6 grades. Thanks for the pictures, I enjoyed the ride.

  2. Wayne Overson said

    I lived in Lynndyl, UT, from age 11 through 18, 1950 through almost all of 1957. I knew everyone in the town. The name, Jacquie Wilkock Pickens, is not familiar to me. Who were you? Anyway? Really?

    • Jacquie Wilcock Pickens said

      Hello Wayne: My family lived in Lynndyl from 1950 age 6 until summer 1958 at 12, Maybe that’s why you didn’t know me you were older.we lived in Rail Road Housing because my dad worked for the UPRR – How can I prove that I knew Lynndyl?? Let’s see .. there were 6 of us in my class: Wayne Shipley, Jane Neilson, Kathryn Nelson, Ross Johnson, my self and Tammy Turner, her father also worked on the RR and they left before we did. Her older sister died in a drowning accident at “the sinks”. I remember “Roy’s Store” and many others. Gary Wiley also a long time resident of Lynndyl is in my neighborhood in West Jordan right now. Thanks again for the pictures, I’ll have to share them with Gary.

      • Wayne Overson said

        Hi, Jacque, I think all of the names you mentioned are related to me except for the Turners and Wileys. I had another cousin, Ila May Overson. And what about Sandra Benson, about your age? I recall going out and trying to find Judy’s body in the water with a lot of other people from town. Ross, who married Allison Moody from DHS, lives in Holden. He and I are still good friends and first cousins. He was a Millard County Deputy Sheriff. I don’t think I sent pictures (?). I am a 74-yr-old dufuss on computers but I can type on my old 1982 word-perfect apparatus. I would not know how to send pictures, anyway. But I have written several books, novels on law enforcement workings, that some people have found interesting. My family lived in three different houses when I was there. My mother was the US Postmistress for quite a few years, Mina Overson, and my father, Bill, worked at the Jericho rock quarry. My family moved around a lot before I was born. But they had lived there in previous decades also. I’ve been reading a book on the history of Lynndyl. It is very interesting. There are some old photos of the kids your age, I’ll look for yours. I was in the 6th grade, ’50-’51, in the old school with Mr. Lovell as our teacher. Sutherland Elementary before that. Looooooong time ago! Wayne O. Date: Sun, 13 Apr 2014 02:35:57 +0000 To: wnoverson@live.com

    • Gary Wiley said

      Wayne, Is one of your brothers Keith? He was one of my best friends in Lynndyl and for all of my life. My name is Gary Wiley son of Thurlo (Bud) and Inez Wiley. We moved to Delta in 1975. If I remember properly your family also you had a brother Roger and I think a sister Arlene is that correct? Well, I just read your post and now I am confused Keith’s mother was Lucil don’t know how to spell the name and her husband worked on the railroal. I remember Ila May and her family also. My cousin is Sandra Benson.

      • Wayne Overson said

        Hi Gary, I remember you as the little guy with dark hair who was a cousin of my good friend Don Benson. Others my age were Joe Neilson, Jim Andrews, Burton Cahoon, Rayma Bradfield, Linda Greathouse, Norman Vest. You lived on the south side of the street from Louis and Lucille Overson who were Keith, Ralph, Roger and Eugene’s parents. In about 1955, my mother became the Postmistress and I and my older brother, Leland and our parents, Bill and Mina actually lived in the backrooms of the US Post Office. Before that we lived in the corner house between the Tom Best and Roy Neilson homes. Before that we were in and old house out on the west side of town. We were Poorer than most everyone else, I think. My grandfather was Hyrum Overson and the other Overson’s grandfather was his brother, Joseph. They came out of Leamington along with most of the Lynndyl Neilsons–offspring of their sister, Emma Overson Neilson. I recall that Dick Hayes and Bud Wiley took us on scout trips and such. They were both fun guys. But, I don’t remember Jacquie Wilcock. I found her website while looking for anything about an annual town celebration. I went to one in 2004 but haven’t heard anymore since. And, I don’t get the meaning of “A Landing a Day.” Does it have something to do with the old “airport” west of Lynndyl? When we got there in 1950, there was still a tower maybe 40-50 feet tall with a beacon light in it. Howard Neilson had some corrals and chicken coops out there, too. Good to hear from you. Wayne O.

        Date: Tue, 15 Apr 2014 14:16:59 +0000 To: wnoverson@live.com

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