Wandering Lizard

An online magazine with information related to attractions, lodging, dining,
and travel resources in selected areas of Utah

Washington County, Utah

Washington County Washington County
Washington County Washington County Washington County
Washington County Washington County Washington County

Washington County is the southeastern most county in Utah. The county seat is St, George. The 2010 census counted 138,115 residents.

Archeologists tell us that both Archaic and Ancestral Pueblo Cultures were present in Washington County. Bands of Southern Paiute living in the area were disparagingly called "Digger Indians" by early Anglo-European settlers because they dug up the roots of wild plants as part of their diet. The first Anglo-European visitors were Franciscan fathers Escalante and Dominguez in 1776. In 1830, the Spanish began using the Old Spanish Trail, which passed through Washington County, for trade between Santa Fe, New Mexico, and Los Angeles, California. The trail also served as a route of immigration. In 1852, an immigrant wagon train was massacred at the Mountain Meadows rest stop on the trail.

In the early 1850s, Mormans began fort building and settlement activity in Washington County. The climate was conducive to agriculture wherever sufficient water could be found. Dam building and irrigation projects were a principal activity during this period. St. George was settled in 1861. In 1869, Brigham Young built his winter residence in St. George, thus establishing himself as the city's first snowbird. During the years from 1875 to 1880, mines in and around Silver Reef produced huge amounts of silver bouillon. The county also produced large amounts of cotton and was known as Utah's "Dixie." Zion National Park was established in 1909. Today, the area around St. George has become a mecca for snowbirds and a growing retirement center.

Southwest Utah
Beaver County | Iron County | Juab County | Millard County | Piute County
Sanpete County | Sevier County | Washington County