Utah History Chapter 15 Age of Optimism Political Trends Educating Utah’s Children Utah’s high birthrate (the numbers of babies born per thousand people in the state) continued to cause problems for Utah’s overcrowded schools. In 1989, Utah had the highest pupilteacher ratio in the nation. Funding education has been the single most difficult problem faced by politicians, teachers, and parents. Schools are funded by tax dollars. It seemed that everyone wanted better educationbut did not want to raise taxes to pay for it. Get a Job Businesses are important to the states economy in many ways. Many companies in Utah have earned a regional, national, and international reputation for their work. Utah has important businesses in finance and banking, medical technology and research, and computer technology and software development. Tourism is big business, providing hotels, and campgrounds, ski lifts, houseboats, bike tours, and riverrunning adventures. Age of Computers Computers affect people’s lives in many ways. The first computers were used to keep track of information. The computers could do math and bookkeeping more accurate and much faster than the fastest accountants. No invention and technology have influenced businesses more than the computer revolution, much of it came from Utah. Software, programs and, languages for computers have been produce by large and small companies in Utah. Medical Help for the World In the early 1980’s the University of Utah Medical School held the eyes of the world for a time. Working with Dr. Willem Koliff’s team, Dr. Robert Jarvik completed the development of an artificial heart. Barney Clark, a Seattle dentist suffering from an incurable heart disease, was the willing volunteer to receive the heart. With the heart in place, and connected to a pump, Barney lived from December through March before he died. AIDSThe Deadly Disease Utahns first heard news of a new disease Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome in the 1980’s. By the 1990’s, there was still no cure for AIDS. In the U.S., it was the second leading cause of death among Americans ages 2544. Utah in Space Have you ever thought of space as a business? In Utah, it is. Utah companies continued to contribute to the national space program in the 1980’s when the first space shuttles were sent into space. Much of the aerospace manufacturing in Utah was carried on by Hercules, near West Valley City, and Thiokol, near Brigham City. Highlyeducated people worked at the plants, which were the major contractors for the space shuttle. A tragedy occurred in 1986 on the tenth launch of the space shuttle Challenger. Faulty seals had allowed burning gases to seep out of one of the rocket boosters, causing an explosion that killed the crew of seven only 73 seconds after launch. Flood Waters The spring 1983 brought extensive flooding in Utah. Twentytwo of the twenty – nine counties experienced major flooding. Volunteers worked as a community to sandbag in Salt Lake City. City Creek was so full of water it had no where to go but down the middle of State Street. Fine Art Flourishes in Utah For many years Utah artist have contributed to our lives. Pioneer painters traveled to New York City and Paris to study art. James C. Christensen’s whimsical paintings often included fairies, elves, sea captains, and mermaids. His work is found framed in galleries and department stores, and is printed on greeting cards and posters. The combination of imagination and insightful views of modern life have made his work internationally famous. The Folk and Their Art One way people kept their distinct heritage alive was through art, especially through crafts that expressed their groups concept of beauty. Jeronimo Lozan born high in the Andes of Peru. His painted figures in miniature scenes often mix the symbols of his PeruvianCatholic heritage with those of his new home in Utah. Robert MartinezWas raised in New Mexico. He is known for carving crucifixes and rosaries for family and friends. Glen ThompsonOpened a shop to make custom saddles Clarice LopezMade buckskin dresses and leggings. Mary Holiday BlackShe is considered to be the nation’s foremost Navajo basket weaver. For 61 years she has been incorporating the symbols fo her people into her designs, preserving what once was considered to be an almost extinct art form. The ArtNovels, Stories, and Poems Since Utah’s early history, literature has been a vital part of our culture. Some authors were born and grew up in Utah; others came much later in their lives, got hooked on Utah, and stayed. Today authors often specialize in subjects relating to the unique Utah lifestyle and scenery. The ArtsMusic, Movies, and Theaters Utah musicians, actors, and dancers add vitality to our lives. There were live theaters and music halls in almost every town and city. The whole state is proud of the Utah Symphony, Ballet West, Utah Opera, and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. Robert Redford began the Sundance Film Festival for independent film makers. Independent film makers are people who make films on their own, not for Hollywood.