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Mormon church's storied Granite Mountain vault opened for virtual tour

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  • Robert
    April 28, 2010 8:58 a.m.

    The archivist decries "merely bringing in any contamination, such as "blue jean dust," the cotton fibers created by brushing pant legs when one walks."

    And then the photo shows an employee wearing blue jeans.

    Hmmm.

  • M&Ms
    April 28, 2010 9:08 a.m.

    Really interesting story. But it's funny that they say they don't want people wearing jeans because of the fibers that can come off of them, but then the guy in the photo is wearing...jeans.

  • yarnicles
    April 28, 2010 9:31 a.m.

    I work in a different photo archive in the valley and I understand what the archivists are talking about. We are trained and know how to handle the materials properly. For example, while we require patrons to wear white cotton gloves when handling any materials, we usually do not because we know how to handle the photographs in a non-damaging way. I've never heard the bit about cotton fibers before though...

  • Granny
    April 28, 2010 9:34 a.m.

    Regarding the "contamination" issues stated by the archivist:

    In addition to the male employee wearing blue jeans, there is also a young woman shown in the photo gallery wearing jeans. Neither employee is wearing gloves to protect the records, the guy doesn't have "booties" over his shoes and the girl doesn't have her long hair pulled back. Neither one has protective clothing (and besides it's 55 degrees!). Some inconsistencies here.

  • Johnny Triumph
    April 28, 2010 9:48 a.m.

    At least they're protecting 'Johnny Lingo', we'd be in dire straights if we ever lost that gem!

  • elwood
    April 28, 2010 10:43 a.m.

    My dad has worked there for almost twenty years now. really boring actually, Ive heard about it every day at the dinner table for all of those twenty years now. they really dont want people up there mostly because so many nuts used to bother them. apparently some people think there all kinds of crazy things in there. I only went on a tour once about a decade ago. once again, very boring. you can tell nothing is going on when they are doing stories on stuff like this.

  • Floyd Johnson
    April 28, 2010 10:53 a.m.

    Ammonium sulfate and diesel.... Sounds like a good way to spend the weekend.

    The question all of us want to ask. How long will it take to get all of that garbage out of there and convert it to a long term survival shelter in event of a meteor threat.

    I remember the day I walked into the BYU library and discovered the card catalogs were gone. Is the microfilm being disposed of as it is being digitized, or are they holding onto them as redundant copies? It is incredible that billions of records have been condensed to fit into a single location, and that they will again be condensed to fit on a few hard drives.

  • MoJules
    April 28, 2010 10:56 a.m.

    Wow, nice pics, love those jeans. I kind of think that there needs to be an exclamation about the photos with these people in jeans. Maybe it was a area where there are no records and so the issue of clothing was not there and also flashes of cameras. But we need to know about the jeans, it totally is distracting from the rest of the information.

  • Alex
    April 28, 2010 11:30 a.m.

    @9:41 - Really? Come on, man.

  • LuVpacifica
    April 28, 2010 11:42 a.m.

    inside views on who were really related to

  • JohnJacobJingleHeimerSchmidt
    April 28, 2010 11:54 a.m.

    It is microfilm storage not microchip manufacturing.

  • LuVpacifica
    April 28, 2010 12:12 p.m.

    inspired information thru so much History

  • Hank Jr
    April 28, 2010 12:45 p.m.

    Great story, but you forgot to mention the website.

  • Duh
    April 28, 2010 1:02 p.m.

    I worked there 18 years ago. Nothing secretive only a storage. There is duplication being done so that the originals never leaves the place. The blue jean thing was weird as I use to wear them every day. I think it is misunderstood what he is talking about becuase he is talking about tour groups rubbing against each other, blah blah blah. It is a controled environment to help preserve, nothing more.

  • wild horses
    April 28, 2010 1:03 p.m.

    I think this was a terrific story.
    Thanks for sharing!

  • rose
    April 28, 2010 1:56 p.m.

    thank you for the story
    very interesting news

  • Hugh G. Hater
    April 28, 2010 2:03 p.m.

    I want to know how the water tastes.

  • rose
    April 28, 2010 2:17 p.m.

    get some from store sounds
    like you never been too utah

  • Flashback
    April 28, 2010 2:38 p.m.

    Hugh, if you want to know how the water tastes, just check out your bottled Mt. Olympus Spring Water (even though Mt. Olympus is one canyon over). After filtering through all that rock it must taste great.

  • Flashback
    April 28, 2010 2:40 p.m.

    I do remember a cartoon from Grondahl years ago that depicted Wild Willy who lived in the underground vaulds. Hysterical.

  • John Stewart Pill
    April 28, 2010 3:44 p.m.

    That cave seems pretty awesome!

  • Buttons
    April 29, 2010 6:34 a.m.

    Thank you!!

  • sistak
    April 29, 2010 7:30 a.m.

    Will the Virtual Tour be available online or somewhere for the public?

  • Dave from Taylorsville
    April 29, 2010 8:59 a.m.

    Hugh G. Hater | 2:03 p.m. April 28, 2010
    "I want to know how the water tastes."

    Hugh; the water tastes GREAT!

    Got to taste the water several times. It was stored in what looked a bit like a lap pool at the far back of the vault.

    I was the graphic designer and presentation designer for the family History Dept. for over 18 years. I went to the vault several times. What's funny about the photos is that many are staged with employees and non-employes with the jeans. There are parts of the vaults where they are similar to "Clean Rooms" where more protective measures are taken.

    Another funny story is that, back in the 80s, a Church general authority has some visitors in town and showed up at the vault wanting to give them a tour. He and his group were turned away because EVERYONE must get permission to tour the vault.

    The answer on original microfilms is, even when digitized, the originals are stored because many records were aloud to be filmed under promise to permanently store the film. If they didn't keep that promise, record collecting would be damaged.

  • ChrisVaWa
    April 29, 2010 9:26 a.m.

    I Timothy 1 : 4 "Neither give heed to fables and endless genealogies, which minister questions, rather than godly edifying which is in faith: so do."

    Titus 3 : 9 "But avoid foolish questions, and genealogies, and contentions, and strivings about the law; for they are unprofitable and vain."

    When will the Restoration Movement get back to the center of the whole Gospel... Jesus Christ?

  • Details
    April 29, 2010 9:27 a.m.

    It's important to read the full sentence to get the meaning. Those of you worried about the two people in photos wearing jeans, the rest of the sentence in the article says, "cotton fibers created by brushing pant legs when LARGE GROUPS walk by".

    I too would love to see the virtual tour if it becomes available. Enjoyed the few photos with the article!

  • snowman
    April 29, 2010 9:44 a.m.

    The question all of us want to ask. How long will it take to get all of that garbage out of there and convert it to a long term survival shelter in event of a meteor threat.



    It isn't garbage.

  • Dave from Taylorsville
    April 29, 2010 11:10 a.m.

    ChrisVaWa | 9:26 a.m. April 29,
    "I Timothy 1 : 4 "Neither give heed to fables and endless genealogies, which minister questions, rather than godly edifying which is in faith: so do."

    Titus 3 : 9 "But avoid foolish questions, and genealogies, and contentions, and strivings about the law; for they are unprofitable and vain.""

    So then Chris, we should run to our bibles and rip out the first 16 verses of The New Testament (Matt. 1: 1-16). And also countless chapters in the Old Testament.

    If you were to understand the verses you quoted in scriptural context and their historical context you'd know that the Jews of that time were justifying themselves though their lineage.

    But to the ignorant, gullible and foolish these verses just might support your argument.

  • ChrisVaWa
    April 29, 2010 12:36 p.m.

    Dave-

    Thank you for your kind words...

    In Old Testament times genealogy was important because Priesthood was by lineage and the genealogy of Jesus was important because it established his lineage in fulfilling scripture prophecies concerning his coming.

    I think it funny how "endless genealogies" and "foolish questions" go hand in hand in these verses. Like when someone is sorting out who they will be sealed to if their parents are divorced but still sealed together and their father is sealed to another woman who is not the person mother. Or who a person will be sealed to if raised by a faithful Mormon Aunt who never married and who's parents are divorces, remarried and not Mormon, and wouldn't want someone to come along and seal them to their parents, because the Aunt is the one who raised them.

    Your endless genealogies do raise lots of ridiculous question, just as the verses state.

  • Clubberlang
    April 29, 2010 1:45 p.m.

    If you truely and sincerely investigated the Church of JESUS CHRIST of Latter-Day Saints you would know that Christ is at the center and head of the Church.

  • Contraltissimo
    April 29, 2010 4:56 p.m.

    @Flashback - Wild Willy! That one was probably my favorite of his cartoons. Pity they probably won't have him in the virtual tour....

  • Contraltissimo
    April 29, 2010 5:01 p.m.

    Flashback | 2:40 p.m. April 28, 2010
    I do remember a cartoon from Grondahl years ago that depicted Wild Willy who lived in the underground vaulds. Hysterical.

    Wild Willy! That one was probably my favorite of those cartoons. I'm so happy to see someone remembers that. They should put *him* in the virtual tour.

  • LordPillsbury
    April 30, 2010 12:53 p.m.

    @ChrisVaWa- First of all, we do not have endless geneologies. Second- The scriptures did not say geneologies are evil, but "to avoid 'endless' geneologies, which minister questions, Rather than Godly edifying. I would agree that LDS should not engage in silly questions such as the one's you put forth. In fact, Apostles and the Prophet have given us the same advice found in the scriptures. Don't ask silly questions like "Did Adam have a belly button?" There are some who would strive with this question to the point that they lost their faith! That is the point Titus and Timothy were making. LDS folks should put Christ at the center of their faith, as counseled by scriptures and church leaders. The church has always taught us this and warns us not to get deviated by silly questions, endless genealogies,contentions or strivings about the law or shall we say "gospel of Christ" for that is what the law directs us to. I see no conflict here, in fact, only support that our work is true, and the warning not to get caught up in questions that might undermine our faith.