Pioneers

Moab’s first permanent settlers arrived in the region in the mid-1870s. The Old Spanish Trail had brought travelers through the area for decades, particularly early explorers, and later those headed west looking for gold and silver. Moab’s pioneers came and stayed when they found unclaimed grazing lands, and the promise of agricultural and ranching opportunities.

When visiting the Musuem of Moab go back in time to see how people lived in the early decades of the Town.

Immerse yourself in a virtual living room of the late 19th century with its wood-fired cook stove, a treadle Singer sewing machine with old patterns just waiting to be stitched. Or the old four-piece washing machine, a very “modern” improvement over its wash-board predecessor! Adjacent to the pioneer room are other selections from the era:

  • a ladies’ side saddle,
  • a rocking cradle,
  • barber shop tools and supplies,
  • and a steamer trunk with old quilts, including one made in 1920 in the old tulip design

In the Pierson History Hall, follow early European exploration and settlement of Southeastern Utah and Moab. Displays include original farming implements, black smith tools, a telephone operator switch board, and typesettings from Moab's Times-Independent newspaper.

Further along learn about the "Rough and Wild" days of Moab's outlaws and the men who sought to bring them to justice. Travel along the early rails, roads, and rivers learning about the various vehicles and adventures that brought people to Moab.

To truly step back in time, the musically-inclined are invited to play the first piano to be brought into the Moab Valley. The old Pickering upright came by wagon in 1898 from the rail line at Thompson Springs–nearly 40 miles–and was ferried across the Colorado River before it found its home in Moab. A number of old musical scores sit atop the piano, along with old family portraits, hand-made lace and a mantel clock.