Mt. Olympus Contacts
David Baird, Chair
Thousand Oaks Drive
Ken Smith, Vice Chair
Mt. Olympus Facts & Firsts
There were several advantages of our current neighborhood to early pioneer settlers: water, forests and land suitable for grazing and orchards. Millcreek was explored by Orson Pratt and Erastus Snow on July 21, 1847, three days before Brigham Young entered the Salt Lake Valley. Pratt reported being impressed with the trees, grasslands, and water supply of our area. The lower part of Millcreek was Utah’s first settlement outside of Great Salt Lake City.
By spring of 1848, John Neff, Sr. And Robert and Archibald Gardner settled in the upper Millcreek area. The Gardeners started a saw mill on the waters of Millcreek near what became Highland Drive and Neff headed further east and constructed the valley’s first flour mill near present-day Evergreen Ave. And 2700 East. Shortly after, the Osguthorpe, Stillman, Keller, Fisher and Russell families settled along Millcreek. They built mills to produce flour, shingles, sawn lumber and molasses from Highland Drive to the top of Millcreek Canyon. John Neff built a road east into the canyon named for him to cut timber to build Salt Lake City and its new “suburbs.”
The full development of the Olympus Cove began in earnest after World War II. Land that was lightly populated by ranchers grazing animals and fruit growers and their orchards gave way to new subdivisions. In the 1950’s, the new Eastwood Elementary School and Eastwood Hills subdivision were constructed on an area that had been an early landfill. The Mount Olympus Park subdivision and numerous others followed, taking advantage of the captivating views and natural beauty of the area.