Start where you are.
Our shared home, Salt Lake City, has a rich and complex natural and cultural history. Often that history is informed by narratives that leave behind the voices, experiences, and knowledges of communities and neighborhoods—past and present. Nonprofit publisher Torrey House Press believes that by enriching the narrative of Salt Lake City, we can unearth hidden environmental and cultural histories in order to better love this home to protect it for the future.
Torrey House is inviting writers and storytellers from across the city of Salt Lake to highlight ecological and cultural sites of interest. Choose a site in your neighborhood or a place that you know well. What natural histories are hiding in plain sight? We invite you to write the hidden and forgotten histories that you know, to share the story of a place that you consider part of your home. Send your piece to connect with other highlighted sites in the Sites and Sightlines project, which includes an online journal, a chapbook, and community conversations.
Do you know about the Salt Lake hot springs, Plum Alley, the Jordan River Corridor, the Marmalade District, the White Lake, the Avenues Wall, or another overlooked place within the city? Share your story with us and help reshape the story of Salt Lake City to incorporate the urban ecological entanglements along the Wasatch Front.
This project began with the University of Utah Environmental Humanities Graduate Program, and now in collaboration, Torrey House Press will create a soft-bound chapbook to grow the community of Sites and Sightlines. By connecting individual sites, we are hoping to set up collective sightlines: new paths to explore together. The chapbook will include a variety of essays from both community members and university students that focus on place. These essays will immerse readers in overlooked sites and unmapped sightlines across the city. What hidden histories and ecologies can we illuminate and share? What happens when we practice heightened and thoughtful noticing? Torrey House Press will develop community events during October 2019 featuring Sites and Sightlines writers and places.
Why This Matters
How well do you know your home? What there needs protecting? With Sites and Sightlines, we invite new ways to explore our home communities and ecosystems, starting where we are: Salt Lake City. As we immerse ourselves in overlooked sites and unmapped spaces, we may begin to see and hear neglected stories in our midst. By practicing the art of noticing, we begin to nurture stronger relationships with our surroundings and understand the complexity of our ever-changing ecosystems and planet. Both nature and culture must be taken into consideration in order to begin to understand a landscape and, therefore, protect it. Join us in exploring and sharing the sites and sightlines of our shared home.
Please focus on one site/place, writing no more than 800 words. Submit your story.