Showing posts with label locations. Show all posts
Showing posts with label locations. Show all posts

Thursday, March 1, 2018

Historic Eagles Lodge: Eagles' to Equitable to Bay to Historic Landmark?

          The first location of Salt Lake's Equitable Life and Casualty was housed in the old Eagle's lodge building on 4th South and West Temple. According to this website Roderick Ross had established the company in said location in 1948.  The building itself did not seem the ideal for the insurance business - at least not with the Eagle's Lodge floor plan. Perhaps in the late 1940's it didn't matter that the building contained skinny stairs and a balcony, but it seemed quite inappropriate in the 1980s.

          My dad had been hired as a computer programmer.  I think he used a different entrance to the building than the majority of workers.  On occasion I had opportunity to visit him at his place of work. As a child I remember seeing parts of what I believed to be the basement.  My dad worked with one those huge wall-to-wall computers  (or maybe several) that may have well taken up the majority of the basement.  It is the break room that I remember most.  I remember tables were set up and at least two different vending machines.  One was quite tiny and offered tiny bottled drinks that cost a dime.  Another machine offered cigarettes.  I don't remember seeing any other part of the building until I was employed there myself.

          Good grief! What a mess! I remember the file cabinets were located on the balcony.  The layout of the office space had not been planned.  File cabinets were added and continued to crowd the already closeted feeling workspace.  I remember looking out over the floor below the balcony thinking how everything seemed disarray and congested.   

The building itself may have been a prime location when it housed the Eagles or even when the Insurance Company took over. However, the neighborhood  itself had seemed to go downhill - even with the Sheraton Hotel owning property just beyond the building on the corner. 

          There was a building sandwiched between the Equitable building and the Sheraton parking lot.  I don't know if it had a name.  Most people unfondly called it "Bum Motel" as there were many residents that seemed to lack ethics and made a habit of getting drunk.  I recall dad coming home from work one time to report that a drunk had fallen out of the window and landed on somebody's car.  The drunk was so intoxicated, he was able to walk away.  The car was severely damaged. I was told that Ross' had tried to buy them out and had speculated that Sheraton had tried to buy out the owner as well, but the owner wouldn't budge.

          I had not worked at said location for long.  The company moved to a much nicer building, nicer location and much bigger parking lot.  The building that had once housed the Eagles and then Equitable was eventually purchased by a company that turned it into a dance hall of sorts.  It was called "The Bay".  I remember having gone there just one time.  It appeared that the structure must have been gutted out an rebuilt. As I recall the interior did not remotely resemble the building I had been familiar with several years before.

          The outside still looks the same.  I don't know if  it is currently occupied or not.  This site says it is a historical landmark. I found this picture on google map

From the outside, the building looks the same as it did in 1948.  The picture I had used in this post didn't appear to have ownership either but contains advertisement to put your name here.  I don't know if it was advertized on the building itself or just the photo that I used.  The Google picture doesn't have a name on the building.  I have noticed at least two other vacant buildings during my search.

          I also learned that 400 South is now called University Boulevard - which I guess could have been its name for the last twenty years.  I didn't realize it had been given that name until I started doing research for my assignment. It was probably named so after UTA started using the trains.  The building seems like it would be a good location as it is  next to TRAX (Utah's extended public transportation) but still may not be the greatest part of town.  I don't know this for sure. I'm not there anymore. 

Thursday, June 29, 2017

If Dead is the Look they were Going For, They have Succeeded

          Though I have had a small hand and say in making funeral arrangements, I have not had the opportunity of having to find a mortuary nor have considered every financial expect.  Before either of my parents had passed, there needed to be a record of what funeral home to contact should they expire.  My dad lived out his final days at Cottonwood Hospital in Murray, Utah.  Ironically, he had also been born there (or so I was told) but at that time it had been called Cottonwood Maternity Ward and wasn't the full blown hospital where he had died.     
          Mom had used a local mortuary as a contact I’m guessing because it was familiar territory as it had been used by other members of our ward.  Before mom passed, Corey had made arrangements for Premier Funeral – though none of us had heard of it before, it really does seem the most economical way to go. 

          Premier doesn’t offer a chapel or a show room in which members can walk around and look at caskets.  They offer a catalogue – which I suppose doesn’t go over well with some people, but Corey and I were fine with it.  Premier has a lot to offer – for one thing the body is embalmed right away – at least where it is possible. (autopsy would be an exception)

          Jeanie was already gone when the paramedics arrived.  Possibly before she fell- or why she was falling.  Her mother said that seven clots had been found in her lung(s) and not just one.  I don’t know what shade she was when the paramedics arrived or how pale she must have gotten in the morgue.  It feels a bit morbid wondering. 

          I was not impressed with the makeup job - but I have no idea what of Jeanie's facial condition when she arrived to the mortuary.  Perhaps they had done a marvelous job with the "canvas" given - I just didn't see that.  Mommy and Daddy had looked so natural, so peaceful, as though they were sleeping.  Jeanie looked like a corpse – like in a really low budget movie when everything looks fake.  It appeared that she had jaundice underneath the make-up.  It was hard seeing her like that.

          Biff had never been involved with any plans concerning funerals – except when we had asked him to be a pall bearer at my mom’s.  But that was the extent of it.  He had never gone to look for a casket or a burial plot.  I’m sure the funeral home they went through was the same one his in-laws had used when they had buried their other two children.  It was right next to – perhaps even part of the cemetery.  I think Biff just went along with what they wanted.  What did he know?  They had been through it before.  Roland and I have both gone through it, but we weren’t there.  We weren’t involved with the decisions or give advice or hold our son’s hand.

          I don’t know that his in-laws would have felt comfortable using Premier as they had the viewing in one location and the funeral in another.  The mortuary was in a familiar place where family and loved ones had already gathered.  They would have had to make arrangements for another chapel with Premier. But I think they would have saved a tremendous amount of cost.

          My son, Randy, had set up a fund for Biff and his daughter – a plea to help pay for expenses.  The goal was to hit 5,000.  3,000 had been raised in eight days by 62 different people. I cried every time I would see donations being made.  I know there were many who knew Jeanie personally, but still many that did not know her at all.  Some hadn’t even known Biff for that matter, and that touched my heart.  My nephew, Brian, was the first to contribute to the cause.

          I don’t know how many chapels and "comfort" rooms the funeral home offered.  I would guess at least seven.  It felt as if there had been seven different viewings all scheduled for Sunday night.  Perhaps there had only been four or five.  We had to pass them all in order to get the room where Jeanie and family were waiting.  The lines were long.  I’m sure that is why they had put us at the end.

          When mom died, we had her at the Relief Society room in the building where she attended church.  We were there Friday night and the mortuary took her away and brought her back the following morning and then we moved into the chapel. Premier had driven her back and forth.  I'm not knocking the full blown centers but am in favor of using Premier again.  They did an awesome job for us.  I was overwhelmed by the amount of traffic involved with Jeanie.  I never felt overwhelmed with Premier.  The situation was always calm and respectful.