Brigham City is a city in Box Elder County, Utah, United States. The population was 17,899 at the 2010 census. It is the county seat of Box Elder County. It lies on the western slope of the Wellsville Mountains, a branch of the Wasatch Range at the western terminus of Box Elder Canyon. Brigham City saw most of its growth during the 1950s and 1960s, but has seen a struggling economy and stagnating growth since then. It is near the headquarters of ATK Thiokol, the company that created the solid rocket boosters for the Space Shuttle.
Brigham City is known for its peaches and holds an annual celebration called Peach Days on the weekend after Labor Day. Much of Main Street is closed off to cars, and the festival is celebrated by a parade, a car show, a carnival, and other activities. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) dedicated its fourteenth temple in Utah in Brigham City on 23 September 2012.
Mormon pioneer William Davis first explored the Brigham City area in 1850. He returned with his family and others a year later to create permanent homes. Brigham Young directed Lorenzo Snow to create a self-sufficient city at the site in 1853. Snow directed both religious and political affairs in the settlement, eventually naming it Box Elder in 1855. Brigham Young gave his last public sermon there in 1877 shortly before his death, and the name of the town was changed to Brigham City after the church president. In 1864, the cooperative movement began in earnest with the creation of a mercantile co-op store and was an important element of the United Order of Enoch. Other industries were added, and the Brigham City Co-op is widely recognized as the most successful of the Mormon Co-op ventures. Economic hardships brought an end to the Co-op in 1895, though the Co-op had first started selling businesses off in 1876.
World War II brought a major economic boost to the city. The federal government created Bushnell General Hospital on Brigham City's south side to treat soldiers wounded in the war. Locals sold supplies and food to the hospital while hospital staff patronized local businesses. After the war, the hospital's buildings were used as Intermountain Indian School. Many young Native Americans attended the boarding school until it closed in 1984, although the Intermountain "I" on the mountain is still visible in tandem with Box Elder High School's "B". The facility has left its mark in a number of other ways, with most of the buildings still standing. Some have been converted into businesses and condos, while others remain empty. Utah State University purchased the site and demolished all remaining buildings in 2013. The Utah State University Brigham City regional campus will be expanded to permanent buildings on this site and will mainly serve students from Box Elder, Weber and Davis counties. Construction will begin in the fall of 2014.
Despite layoffs over the past decade, much of Brigham City's economy relies on Thiokol, the creator of many missiles, as well as the solid rocket booster for the Space Shuttle. Additionally, the local Autoliv (formerly a part of Thiokol) airbag plants also net Brigham City many jobs. The addition of a Walmart distribution center in nearby Corinne has also brought new jobs.