KAYSVILLE -- On Pioneer Day, while the rest of the state celebrates the arrival of the pioneers 165 years ago, some folks in Davis County will look back to an event that happened 100 years ago -- the laying of the cornerstone of the Kaysville Tabernacle.
The tabernacle, a special meetinghouse for members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, was completed in 1914. The cornerstone was placed on top of the cement foundation, where the brickwork begins, on July 24, 1912.
"We have the exact program, and so we're going to duplicate that program," said Bill Sanders, curator of the Heritage Museum of Layton.
The centennial program starts at 7 p.m. Tuesday, in the Kaysville Tabernacle at 198 W. Center St.
Admission is free and open to all. The event is sponsored by local chapters of the Sons of Utah Pioneers, Daughters of Utah Pioneers and the Kaysville Central LDS Stake.
"We're going to have group and congregational singing of the same songs that were sung then," Sanders said.
A talk was given at the original cornerstone celebration by Henry H. Blood, who was bishop of the Kaysville ward. The speech by Blood, who went on to become governor of Utah from 1933 to 1941, was titled "The Early Settlement of Kaysville."
"The talk was probably about 45 minutes long," said Sanders, who has a copy of the text. "It would not have been an unusual thing to have a dedication program like this, and have some guy talk for a couple of hours -- something we'd jump up at in horror."
To make it more palatable to modern listeners, the speech has been cut down to about 20 minutes and made into a PowerPoint presentation. The reworked speech will be narrated by Jeff Dunford, of Kaysville, who will be followed by Kelly Johnson, current president of the Kaysville Central Stake.
"He'll give a little talk on Latter-day Saints as church builders, another speech that was given in 1912," Sanders said.
That speech is updated to include what's happened since 1912.
The original dedication ceremony was outdoors, but this one will be inside the tabernacle.
Tabernacles, built in earlier days of the church, are basically equivalent to modern LDS stake centers -- buildings designed to accommodate larger meetings of multiple wards or congregations.
"The Davis Stake took in everybody from Bountiful to South Weber," Sanders said, noting that most cities had only one LDS congregation.
As the population grew, the stake was split north from south at Farmington. Those in the southern end attended multi-ward meetings in the existing Bountiful Tabernacle. The Kaysville Tabernacle was built to accommodate the North Davis Stake.
"Tabernacles were a little more fancy than a regular meetinghouse," said Sanders.
Kaysville's was designed by local architect William Allen, who drew up the plans for many of the Victorian homes in Kaysville and Layton.
According to the Utah State History website, http://history.utah.gov, Allen's design for the tabernacle combines "modern" and Greek Revival styles.
"It doesn't have a tower," Sanders said, comparing it to the older tabernacles in Logan, Brigham City and Bountiful.
But this building has its own beauty.
"The special features of this tabernacle are the stained glass windows, which you see in very few LDS buildings, and the woodwork," said Sanders. "It has very elaborate moldings and stairways and window frames, and the actual pulpit and choir area."
A time capsule was placed inside of the cornerstone.
"It was supposed to be opened in 100 years," Sanders said, but it won't be. "We'd have to rip out the entire corner of the building."
But there is a list of items in the capsule, including pictures, books of scripture, statewide and local newspapers, and coins minted in 1912.
A centennial celebration is planned for 2014, to mark the completion of the Kaysville Tabernacle. That event will mirror the original dedication of the building.