Park City Museum Research Coordinator’s Lecture Focuses on “Life About the City During Park City Mining Days”
As the Park City Museum’s Research, Digital Services and Social Media Coordinator, Dalton Gackle’s job is to manage the Hal Compton Research Library and keep track of historical photo requests and oral histories.
In doing so, Gackle helps the museum preserve and promote the history of Park City. He will follow up with a talk titled “Life About Town on Park City Mining Days” from 5-6 p.m. Wednesday, June 22 at the Museum’s Education and Collections Center, 2079 Sidewinder Drive. Although the event is free, registration is suggested by visiting parkcityhistory.org/events.
In addition to the talk, Gackle will sign her new book, “Images of America: Park City,” which will be released June 20 and will be available at the Park City Museum, Dolly’s Bookstore, and online at Amazon.and Barnesandnoble.com.
Gackle’s presentation will cover some of the book’s topics, namely the general and mining history of Park City.
“The lecture is only an hour long, so I don’t know if I’m going to expand on a lot of what’s in the book,” he said. “I could expand a bit on some mines and some people.”
Gackle began writing the book in October 2021 after Arcadia Publishing approached the Park City Museum for a book that would be part of its “Images of America” series.
“Although I hadn’t thought of writing a book like this, I thought it would be an interesting opportunity and a good way to showcase the museum’s image collections,” he said.
The museum’s executive director, Morgan Pierce, also thought the book would be a good idea, so Gackle undertook the task, which took almost five months.
One of the biggest challenges was deciding what to focus on, because each book in the “Images of America” series is just 128 pages, Gackle said.
“You are limited in the number of images you can run because you can do up to two per page,” he said. “So we had to find some that would tell a great story and be interesting to watch. And I also needed to find pictures that showed what I was talking about in the book.
Gackle made sure his text touched on all the major mines, such as the Silver King and Ontario and the minor mines, such as the Nelson Queen, for which Park City is famous.
Also, he wanted to touch on the lives of the city’s historical figures – Thomas Kearns, RC Chambers, John Judge, John Daly and Suzanne Bransford Emery Holmes Delitch Engalitcheff, also known as the Silver Queen.
“I also wanted to talk about the general way of life in the city, including schools, churches and businesses,” he said. “So again, shrinking the footage to fit all of that was difficult.”
Although Gackle is one of the museum’s expert historians, he learned new things about Park City while writing the book.
“The main thing was to determine the orientation of the location of all the mines around the city,” he said. “Sometimes it’s hard to imagine where these mines are on the different slopes, unless you’re an avid hiker and walk near these mines all the time. So I talk about places in the book to help people know where they are.
With this book under his belt, Gackle is ready to write another as long as it doesn’t interfere with his duties at the museum.
“This one took a lot of my time, but I did the work for the book as part of my job,” he said. “I’d love to write another one that picks up where this one leaves off and include our skiing story, but we’ll see.”