KSL – Statehood Day: TV special, fireworks planned across Utah on Monday for 125th anniversary
SALT LAKE CITY — At 10:03 a.m. Eastern time on Jan. 4, 1896, President Grover Cleveland signed a proclamation that declared Utah to be the country’s 45th state.
A superintendent of Western Union in Salt Lake City rushed from his office and fired a pair of shots in the air to inform the community that the proclamation was signed, historian Audrey Godfrey wrote in a 1995 article about “Statehood Day” for “Utah Historical Quarterly.”
“At this prearranged signal, merrymaking commenced,” Godfrey wrote. “Bill Bingley and his shotgun brigade gathered near Browning Brothers store in Salt Lake, and boys blew whistles and set off ‘bombs’ felt blocks away. At 11:30, the NGU (National Guard of Utah) gathered on Capitol Hill at noon to fire a 21-gun salute.”