FAIRVIEW—The home at 15 E. Center Street was built by Albert Christensen in 1904. He owned a coal mine east of Fairview and installed a stove-pipe coal furnace in the home, which was a sign of wealth at the time.
Christensen employed several artisans to add Victorian flourishes inside the home, such as stained-glass windows; carved interior mouldings around windows, doorways and the staircase; detailed brass doorknobs; and a priceless portrait of a woman etched on glass. A dumbwaiter was installed for transferring items from the fruit room in the basement.
The fireplace mouldings, likely made of pine, were painted to look like oakwood, similar to how the columns and benches were painted in the Salt Lake Tabernacle by the pioneers.
The brick and rock exterior features arched windows, embrasures below the roofline, a gable-and-valley roof, curved dormers on the central peak of the roof, and a wraparound covered porch decorated with spindlework.
The home stayed in the Christensen family until Sherrill and Hazel Anderson and their five children purchased the home in 1960 to meet the needs of their growing family. They would have three more children for a total of eight: Corey, Lynn, Kevin, Janell, Lisa, Derek, Todd and Gregg.
“We all lived here together for a while,” Hazel says.
The well-loved home was in excellent condition when the Andersons moved in. They made a few modifications over the years, such as enclosing the west side of the wraparound porch to use as a mudroom and laundry. They enclosed a side door that they were not using, restored the stairwell and updated the kitchen. In addition, they transitioned the old coal furnace to a gas one.
Upon purchasing the home, Hazel painted the dark interior woodwork to white. “I love it because it felt like home,” she says.
Hazel was born in Freedom, a small town west of Moroni. When she was 12 years old, her father passed away, and her family moved to Manti, where her mother taught school. The family then moved to Mayfield and then Sterling.
The Andersons are sheep herders. They had a country barn for the sheep as well as a barn in town that was a few blocks from their home, where they kept chickens and cows.
“It made work for the kids to do. They learn to work when they have all those things,” Hazel says. “It’s a good way to raise kids.”
Hazel’s husband Merrill passed away in the 1990s, and her sons took over the sheep business. It was originally Anderson Land and Livestock but was changed to Anderson & Bros.
The three-bedroom home was the first in Fairview to have an indoor bathroom. It still has its original sink. Initially, the Christensen family paid local boys to pump water from their well to fill a tank that was stored in the attic.
Initially the Christensens planned to install a second bathroom upstairs, “but they never did because of all the fuss in town,” Hazel says. “People in town thought that it was just awful” to have an indoor bathroom, simply because it was new and unfamiliar to them. Upstairs there is a large closet in the place where the second bathroom was intended.
Famous astronaut and former Utah Senator Jake Garn was a grandson of Albert Christensen. As a child, he carved his initials in an exterior brick outside the bathroom.
Another claim to fame of the home is that Hazel is the step-grandmother of Utah Governor Spencer Cox, who is also from Fairview.
“There’s been a lot of living and a lot of love in this house,” Hazel says.