Prostitution in Salt Lake City

Prostitution in Salt Lake City has been shaped by its larger history. Unlike other “instant cities” like San Francisco or Denver, which began as rowdy mining towns with open prostitution and later became “respectable,” Salt Lake began in 1847 as an orderly, family-dominated Latter-Day Saints (or Mormon) settlement that became somewhat wilder 2 decades later with the advent of mining and railroads. The early Mormon pioneers condemned extramarital sex and evidently kept the city almost completely free of prostitutes. The transcontinental railroad, completed in 1869, brought non-Mormons (or gentiles) to the territory for mining, railroad, and other job opportunities, and prostitutes followed.

The first well-known madam, Kate Flint, began managing a brothel in 1872 on Commercial Street, just two blocks from the Latter-Day Saints' Temple ...

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