Utah began to be settled by Mormon pioneers from 1847 on, with many outlying towns being primarily agricultural. Not all of these settlements were successful over time.

Paria was settled by Mormon farmers in 1865 and was well-established by the 1880s, but the Paria River flooded repeatedly from 1883 to 1888, leading to its decline. A brief flurry of gold mining activity in 1910-11 failed to revive its fortunes. Another southern town with better remains is Grafton, on the road to Zion.

Hawaiian converts to the LDS church established a small community in the West Desert called Iosepa in 1889. The colony proved unsustainable due to crop failures, infectious diseases, and the draw of jobs in the mines. The town was abandoned by 1917.

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