135 years ago, the Logan Utah Temple was dedicated. Here are some fun facts you might not know about it

Today marks the 135th anniversary of the Logan Utah Temple dedication, done in three sessions on May 17-19, 1884, by President John Taylor, third president of the Church.

The Logan Utah Temple was the only temple President Taylor dedicated and the second temple to be built in Utah. The five-story temple was constructed entirely by volunteer labor for seven years, from 1877 to 1884.

The temple’s groundbreaking was held a month after that of the Manti Utah Temple, and the two temples share a similar castellated appearance.

Unlike the St. George Utah Temple, the first to be finished in Utah, the Logan temple was the first to have muraled ordinance rooms for live-acting presentation and progression of the endowment ceremony.

The Logan Utah Temple.
The Logan Utah Temple.

The exterior walls of the temple were originally painted a pinkish, off-white color to hide the dark, rough-hewn limestone, but the paint was allowed to weather away in the early 1900s. The bare stone can be seen on the exterior walls today.

In 1976, 92 years after its dedication, the Logan Utah Temple was closed for over two years for a complete interior reconstruction. The historic temple’s handcrafted interior was gutted and the roof was removed, which left only the exterior walls standing.

The Logan Utah Temple's reflection pool was added in 2009.
The Logan Utah Temple’s reflection pool was added in 2009.

The 1970s-style interior was patterned after the Provo Utah Temple and the Ogden Utah Temple before the latter's renovation. The muraled rooms used for progressing through the ordinance ceremonies were replaced with separate wallpapered rooms equipped for a motion-picture presentation of the endowment.

President Spencer W. Kimball, who rededicated the temple on March 13-15, 1979, regretted the need to rebuild the interior because of the loss of pioneer craftsmanship.

In the Logan Utah Temple rededicatory prayer, President Kimball acknowledged the gratitude felt for all temples that had been built, rebuilt and yet to be built. He expressed gratitude for missionary work and faithful members striving to attend the temple.

The Logan temple grounds were renovated in 2009, and the 1970s-style water feature was replaced with a pioneer-inspired oval reflecting pool. Heated sidewalks to help with heavy snowfall and areas for enhancing exterior photography of individuals and groups were also added.

On April 19, 2019, the Church announced details about renovating the Salt Lake Temple and stated that renovation plans for more pioneer-era temples would be forthcoming.

Brent Roberts, the Church's director of special projects, said the projects team has worked on the Manti project for years but isn't ready to announce plans. At the time of the Salt Lake Temple announcement, the Church had just began studying plans for Logan.

Though the projects will be costly and take years, leaders have said it’s worth the effort.

"Temples are precious to us because in them, Church members and their families participate in sacred ceremonies and ordinances that are the crowning facet of the gospel of Jesus Christ," President Russell M. Nelson said. "The highest blessings that God offers to his faithful children are available only in a temple."