Dates in Office: 1870-1882
Terms in Office: 3
Age when Elected: 40
William B. Preston was born on November 24, 1830 in Franklin County, Virginia to Christopher Preston and Martha Mitchell Clayton. He married Harriett Ann Thatcher on February 24, 1858 and Birthe Marie Andersen and had ten children. He settled in Logan in 1859 but later died in Salt Lake City, Utah on August 2, 1908. He was buried in Logan.
Highly involved in the early development of Logan, Mr. Preston made the plans for laying out and digging the Logan irrigation canal and assisted with the original survey of Logan. From 1862 to 1865 he was twice chosen to represent Cache County in the Lower House of the Utah legislature. In 1869 he was chosen as a director of the Logan Cooperative Mercantile Institution. Later, he was appointed a trustee and one of the directors of Brigham Young College and subsequently became chairman of its executive committee.
On March 7, 1870 he was elected mayor of Logan. Beginning in 1871, Mr. Preston devoted much of his time to building the Utah Northern Railway which was completed in May 1874. In 1879 Logan built it's first culinary water system which ran along all of the principle streets in the city. Mr. Preston served 3 terms as mayor and filled the office for twelve years.
1. "The Herald Journal Centennial Edition". William B. Preston was One of Logan's Builders. Logan, Utah: January 1, 1952, page 82.
2. Jensen, Andrew, ed. "Latter-day Saint Biographical Encyclopedia". Salt Lake City, Utah: Publishing Press, 1971, 1:232.
3. Noble, Warrum, ed. "Utah Since Statehood: Historical and Biographical". Chicago, Illinois: S.J. Clarke Publishing Company, 1919, 2:150.
4. Ricks, Joel E., ed. "The History of a Valley : Cache Valley, Utah-Idaho". Logan, Utah: Cache Valley Centennial Commission, 1956.
March ~ 50 women voted in the Logan City election as a result of the Woman's Suffrage bill that had just passed the Utah Territorial Legislature. 39
December ~ Logan City secured its townsite with the federal act for the Relief of the Inhabitants of Cities and Towns upon the Public Lands. Prior to this time, settlers in Logan and other communities were considered squatters on public lands. 7
~ The Liberal Party was formed by non-Mormons, and the People's Party was formed by the Mormon residents. 50
~ A dairy cooperative, headed by Lorenzo Hansen, began which gathered a herd of between 50-700 head of cattle during the summer months. The cheese produced from these cattle was produced in a plant between Cache and Box Elder counties. The cattle were returned to the owners in the fall and half the cheese produced was given as rental for the cows. This plant operated until 1888. 56
February 15 ~ A survey line was drawn at the 42nd parallel which created the Utah-Idaho state line, and divided the valley. Before this time all of the Cache Valley settlements were considered to be in Utah, including much of Franklin County, Idaho.. 51
August ~ The Logan City School District was created and an election was held for trustees of the new city-wide school. Logan has the distinction of being the first school system in the state to develop a pattern of consolidation and city-wide control of the school program. 577 children between the ages of 6 and 16 were recorded in the first school census. 39, 49
~ Dr. Oliver C. Ormsby, the first formally trained physician in the valley, was persuaded to move here by prominent residents of Logan. He started the first drug store, performed the first major surgery, and operated the first regular clinic. 39
February 17 ~ Charles Benson is lynched by a mob after he's arrested for the shooting of David W. Crockett. 42
Summer ~ The old foundation of the Logan Tabernacle was taken out and it was enlarged to 125 1/2 feet long (exclusive of vestry and buttresses) by 65 1/2 feet wide. Charles O. Card was elected superintendent of the works.
August ~ The St. John's Episcopal Church was established in Logan by Bishop Daniel S. Tuttle, Reverend Father William H. Story and Joseph Richardson. Their first meetings were held in a small adobe building known as "the bakery". 3, 39, 54
~ The population of Logan was 2,033. 54
~ The First Post Office in Logan was established with C.B. Robbins as postmaster. Before this time, mail was distributed from the tithing office of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints for all of Cache Valley. 39
June 3 ~ A meeting was held to organize the "General United Order of Cache Valley", with Brigham Young, Jr. as president. 47
~ Lindquist Hall became Logan's first city hall, located at 201 North 100 East. The hall was built by Niels Lindquist, a Swedish emigrant, in 1868. 4
~ The first organization of higher education in Logan, LDS Church owned and operated Brigham Young College was established. 54
~ A Presbyterian church and school were started in Logan by the Reverend Calvin Parks and his wife which continued until 1934. The school was called the Cache Valley Seminary but later it was renamed the New Jersey Academy. In 1934 the Academy merged with the Wasatch Academy in Mount Pleasant and had approximately 210 boarding students. 3, 39, 52
~ The first appropriations for a Cache County Fair were recorded. 2
~ In Logan, an ordinance authorizing and regulating a Fire Department was read and adopted. E.W. Curtis was appointed chief engineer of the Fire Department. 7