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Big John: Coal Black Muffler Man - Helper, UT
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member QuarrellaDeVil
N 39° 41.236 W 110° 51.266
12S E 512481 N 4393058
Quick Description: An eighteen foot coal miner by the name of Big John stands in front of the Helper City Library, which is inside the Helper Civic Auditorium at 19 S Main St, Helper, UT.
Location: Utah, United States
Date Posted: 10/24/2016 7:01:46 PM
Waymark Code: WMTAV7
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member veritas vita
Views: 1

Long Description:
While maybe not unique, Big John is interesting in that, while he was cast from the mold of a Paul Bunyan highway giant, he never actually got to be Paul Bunyan. He's always been here in Helper, doing the job for which he was created, to serve as a symbol of community pride and a memorial to those in the mining industry who shaped this part of Utah. Big John is eighteen feet tall and completely black, so it's probably best to visit him during daylight hours, but there's nothing that says you can't visit him at night (he's not illuminated, though).

A sign at Big John's feet provides some background:

Big John was an original idea, born from the creativity and enthusiasm of Helper citizens, the Mayor and the City Council. In February of 1964, many of the movers and shakers of Helper decided the city needed a civic attraction. On February 27, 1964, the first meeting for the formation of a museum was held, where Councilman Al Veltri was appointed chairman. Things snowballed from there.

On March 12, 1964 the Western Mining Museum was on its way. It was discovered that a firm, -International Fiberglass in Venice, CA.- made large fiberglass figures for promotional purposes. The company was a fiberglass boat builder that had begun making tall advertising figures in 1963. With some discussion, the order went out and created the largest resident of Helper. Paul Bunyan became a miner.

Of course the miner still needed a name, but that didn't take long. In 1961, the song of fame (the first was "16 Tons") about mining won the best Country Song and Album of the Year. It was of course "Big Bad John". What other name was fitting for the 18 foot miner in Helper except "Big John".

Big John is a proud symbol of pride for the mining industry. John also signifies the memory of all those who have given their lives in the local mines since the late 189's. John is the foundation of civic pride and strong work ethics for a unified community.

Stand was built from rails, spikes, and plates gathered from Castle Gate Mine Tram Way.
Price of Admission: 0.00 (listed in local currency)

Roadside Attractions Website: [Web Link]

Location Website: [Web Link]

Weekday Hours: Not listed

Weekend Hours: Not listed

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Wood Carver visited Big John: Coal Black Muffler Man - Helper, UT 6/5/2017 Wood Carver visited it