Plenty Of History Seen In 80 Years


Pat Cline has lived the history of Star Valley, the place she has called home for almost 80 years.

When Star Valley first started to form in the 1800s, there were six homesteads that made up the entire town which was founded in 1878 by a man whose last name was Starr. Starr's first name is a mystery to many, but several long-time residents believe his first name was John.


Jerrie Tipton, daughter of Pat and Raymond Cline, stands among the remains of her family's homestead in Star Valley.

Cline remembered the six homesteads that were around when she grew up in the small farming community.

The six homesteads were owned by Bob Holden, Andy Ogilvie, Mr. Smouse, the Pete Haught family, A.T. Vaughn and Walt Lazear.

"They are all still here for the most part," said Cline's daughter Jerrie Tipton.

Cline's grandparents, the Haughts, homesteaded the property in 1908, which consisted of 120 acres with another 40 acres at Tonto Village where there was a sawmill.

Cline said the six homesteads are what Star Valley was made of back then.

"That was Star Valley," she said.

Each of the homesteads were allowed to have 10 head of cattle, Cline remembered, adding that dry farming was the work that most families did.

Star Valley first started to grow in 1946 when Ogilvie decided to sell his property close to where the old Circle K and Lamplighter RV Park now sit.

Tipton, who was born in the 1950s, remembers that Star Valley had zero businesses or shops back then.

Payson had a few businesses at the time, including the Boardman's Store, the Payson post office, the Pioneer Saloon and the Elks Lodge.

The very first business that opened in Star Valley was Bob and May Emmett's Restaurant and Bar, in what is now Pete's Place. In 1954, the Lazy D Motel was built.

In 1948 the highway going east was moved to allow residents to get to places more easily. All the men in the town worked on the new highway for 30 days each.

Tipton said the town has changed a lot from the place she remembers growing up in.

Her 1970 Payson High School graduating class had 39 seniors, which increased to more than 160 in 1989.

"When I graduated I knew everyone in town," she said, adding that is no longer the case.

She said when Payson started to grow, other businesses started to move into Star Valley and continues to this day.

And today the town has more than 2,000 people.

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