1892 – Present
One of the most beautiful historic buildings in Wasatch County is located at 81 East Center Street in Heber. Over the decades, it has been a private residence, a bank and a real estate sales office. The building’s official name is the Abram Hatch House; however, most local residents remember it as the old Zions Bank building.
Abram Hatch was a local businessman and farmer who also served in various leadership positions for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. From 1864 to 1867 Hatch went on a mission to the United Kingdom, and upon his return to Utah, became the presiding bishop of Wasatch County. When the Wasatch Stake was created in 1877, Hatch became the first local Stake President for the church. He held that calling until 1901.
Hatch also served as the probate judge in Wasatch County and was a member of the Utah Territorial Legislature for 23 years. He was the first representative to support Utah’s women’s right to vote, which was granted in 1870 — a victory, however, that was overturned in 1887 by the federal Edmunds-Tucker Act.
Hatch died in Heber in 1911 at the age of 81.
Victorian With A Pioneer Twist
Hatch’s Victorian-style house was built in 1892 with red sandstone quarried just east of Heber. The house was used as a private residence for almost a century, and in the early 1970s there was talk about tearing down this beautiful, historic building to make room for a parking lot. Thankfully, in 1973, Zions First National Bank acquired the building to establish a Heber branch.
The company spent time and money to restore the building to its previous glory, and in 1975, the Abram Hatch House was added to the National Register of Historic Places. Those who once banked at Zions Bank or have seen the building’s interior can attest to the charm, architecture and spectacular history of this building.
The one-and-a-half story Victorian boasts a symmetrical front façade, which is commonly found in earlier pioneer architecture. The front porch features Victorian spindles, lathe-turned posts, decorative brackets and balusters, and the roof is covered with diamond hatch and fish scale patterned shingles. The main entrance has a small tower with two bay windows, and the interior features many intricate wood carvings and details, as well as various colored glass panes.
When it was a private residence, a small rear wing comprised the service rooms and the upstairs had sleeping rooms on either side of the center hall.
Up For Sale
As the Abraham Hatch House once again changes ownership, maybe the magic of this building will remind our community of the importance of keeping our heritage alive. Just because it is on the National Register of Historic Places does not mean there are any restrictions or requirements placed on whoever purchases the property. It is up to local laws and ordinances to protect historic buildings.
If we want to preserve our valley’s past and keep these historic buildings around for generations to come, we should focus just as much on restoring, renewing and protecting our historical landmarks as we do on building new.
While the Abram Hatch House is on the market, stop by and ask to take a look inside. You won’t regret taking a few minutes to admire the unique architecture of this piece of Wasatch County history while you’re still able.
Courtesy of Wasatch County Library
Wasatch County Library strives to provide our community with an expanding collection of resources to improve lives. 465 East 1200 South, Heber City, Utah | 435-654-1511
@wasatchcountylibrary or wasatch.lib.ut.us