January 13, 2010
Willard Butt, with his love for a practical joke, his easy wit and humor, coupled with his hospitality and intense interest in people, was one of the most colorful characters in the country. His doors were open to friends and to strangers, cowboys, and Indians. If danger was present, he was always in the front ranks. For many years he acted as county sheriff. In later life, when crippled with rheumatism, he continued to ride the range.
He married Julia Nielson, a girl with a heart, if that could be possible--bigger than his own. Their friends were legion. Far and near they came to bask in the sunshine and hospitality of the Butt home. To their marriage were born four children: Elsa, Harold, Rye, and Lila.
Willard came through the Hole-in-the-Rock to Bluff..remaining there for a few years until the Blue Mountain Mission materialized. He went to Verdure where he lived for a few years. Returning to Bluff he lived until his death, June 9, 1919 (Saga of San Juan 305).
Handwritten notes in book owned probably by Brigham Young Jr.:
All of the handwritten notes contained within the book appear to be written in the same hand. In addition to the probable ownership of this book by Brigham Young Jr. this copy also has a Bluff Utah provenance. Brigham Young Jr. spent some time in Bluff in the years 1895 and 1896. A handwritten table of distances in the back of the book records the miles between Bluff Verdure Monticello and Moab Utah. #11;#11;Also on the facing pace is a handwritten list that reads as follows: Bluff City Nov. 25 1897 Nov. 25 97 #11;Names of those who desire to go away from Bluff: #11;Willard Butts Willard George William Butt #11;#11;Names of those who remain in Bluff: #11;1. Bishop J. Neilsen sic 2. Kumen Jones 3. Lemuel H. Redd 4. Jas. B. Decker #11;5. Hans Bayles 6. John Allen 7. Hirum Perkins Hyrum 8. H. Jas. Neilsen sic #11;9. John Rogers 10. William Adams 11. John Adams 12. J.M. Redd 13. Jens P. Neilsen sic 14. Francis Neilsen sic 15. Fred. Adams 16. Jas. Hammond 17. Albion Brown 18. Willis Rogers 19. Pres. F.A. Hammond 20. Platt D. Lyman 21. 22. Division of the stake. Many of the individuals listed above were original settlers of Bluff Utah and came to the region with the Hole-in-the-Rock Expedition of 1879-80. As mandated by the LDS Church a group of approximately 236 people traveled with the goal of settling the south eastern area of the Utah Territory. The specific route the settlers chose led them to a narrow opening in the west wall of Glen Canyon. The only way to continue their journey was to blast a larger passage through this narrow opening referred to as the "Hole-in-the-Rock." A total of forty wagons made their way safely to Bluff Utah. Bluff was originally intended to be a farming village but because of the harsh terrain livestock production was implemented under the direction of Francis A. Hammond 1822-1900. Hammond was appointed the LDS Stake President of the San Juan area in 1885. #11;#11;Individuals listed above include: Willard George William Butt 1858-1919 was an original member of the Hole-in-the Rock expedition and was San Juan County!s first sheriff. He also started the first steam powered sawmill in San Juan County. He died in Cortez Colorado and was buried in Bluff Utah
Willard and how Whisker's Draw got its name
Willard Butt home in Bluff