152 West 2nd Street
William Hutchens (1828-1885) and Eliza Stone (18337-1904)
William B. Hutchens was born 1828 in Spartanburg, South Carolina, the son of a wealthy plantation owner. He met Mormon missionaries at the age of 14 and was converted and baptized with his family in 1842. In 1854 he married Eliza Stone from England in Salt Lake City. After their marriage Brigham Young sent William and Eliza to Bingham Fort to help build up Weber County.
They arrived after the winter of the “great experiment” when the Shoshone and the settlers lived together in Bingham Fort. The Native Americans no longer lived in the fort but they were there in great numbers; all the vacant land north and south of west 2nd Street was one great encampment of tents. The settlers’ herds and the emigrant trails had destroyed the small game, plants, grasses and seeds that the Indians depended on for food so they demanded portions of everything the pioneers had.  William learned enough of the Shoshone language to communicate well and gained a mutual trust with the Natives that camped near him. As William developed his farm, he shared every third row of his vegetables with them, and sub-chief Indian Jack shared buffalo from their long hunts.
The house at 152 W 2nd Street is the fifth and final house that William and Eliza built in the area. This was their “dream” home built in 1867 on uncultivated land in the disbanded Bingham Fort. The house was located in a popular area between the school house, Old Pioneer Road, and the molasses mill. See Indians Love Molasses for interesting incident that occurred one morning at the Hutchens’ family breakfast.
Originally the exterior walls of the house were adobe and the floor plan had two large square rooms arranged next to each other with two front doors and four windows arranged symmetrically on the front façade. The house was one and a half stories tall with end wall chimneys and small second level gable windows on either side of the chimneys; the bedrooms were upstairs. The second door on the front was not installed for polygamy but was a common American form of house that provided a separate entrance to the parlor. The granary was close to the house as it was used as a summer kitchen.
The large adobe house was upgraded to plastered walls inside and a shingled roof. Other nearby new houses and the new school house were also plastered. The process of plastering walls is best described by the children in Mary Elizabeth Hutchens’ autobiography:
When the (adobe) house was finished, Mary and Mel went up to clean it. They were surprised to find black and red and white hair mixed with the plaster. They imagined that the men’s hair had come out while they were working. They were quite alarmed about it. They took some sample of all colors to show their father that night, because the men who worked on the house were Mr. Taft, who had white hair; Mr. Drake who had red hair, and his brother Orson who had black hair. So when they arrived home, Mary said to her father, “Father, why do you suppose those men’s hair fell out so?”
Her father said, “What men?”
Mary said, “The men who built the house. The plaster is just full of red and white and black hairs. See, we brought some to show you.” And Mary and Mel showed some of the hair they had collected.
Her father laughed and said, “Well, girls, it does look as though it might have been theirs, but that is cows’ hair. They take hair off hides and put it in the plaster to make it stick on the walls. If hair wasn’t put in, the plaster would all fall off.”
The girls were glad they had found out before they had said anything about it to their playmates. It took all day to clean the house and the next day their father moved the household goods, and that night they couldn’t sleep for looking at the walls and thinking what a lovely house it was and what clean smooth nice walls it had. On the ceiling was the mark of a switch- just like someone had hit the ceiling while it was yet soft. The children thought that was wonderful too. 
The adobe house was large and grand, but it was not yet finished. In 1869 the Great Highway across the continent met in Corrine, Utah, eventually changing Ogden from a farming village to a railroad hub. Sometime in the early 1870s, surveyors made a railroad right-of-way through the Meadows (today’s Business Depot Ogden). William got the contract to build a portion of that railroad grade through the Meadows and hired men from their own vicinity and from the valley for the work. They used horses and scrapers. They scraped the soil from the sides of the right-of-way and made a high embankment for the track.
Having charge of the work, William also had charge of the payroll, and one Saturday he brought home all that he could carry of money in a bag to pay the men. It was mostly silver. He said to his wife, “Eliza, I don’t know what to do with this money. I am afraid it might be stolen as I have to keep it until Monday. Where would be a safe place to hide it until then?” They both appeared rather worried. Then Eliza, seeing a large barrel of salt said, “Why don’t you partly empty the salt barrel, put the money in this pail, put it in, and then refill the barrel with the salt.” So this they did, and on Monday morning William took the bucket of money out and paid off the men; the men going to the granary back of their house.” This is how the granary became a temporary pay roll station for the railroad. 
With the money earned from railroad work, William Hutchens built a saw mill north west of his house for the purpose of making lumber to cover the outer adobe walls of his house with board planks. In addition to covering the adobe with the planks, he added a beautiful, long porch; the porch was reminiscent of the three porches on his father’s old mansion in South Carolina. Just east of the porch, he added a third room. Shortly after this William obtained some paint and painted the front doors white. It was the first paint that the Hutchens children had ever seen. Now appearance of the board house was unique and stylish in Weber County; the house evidenced fine craftsmanship and the cultural background of the South. 
Still another addition to the house came in 1885. William’s mother-in-law needed care and he built a mother-in-law room attached to the rear filling the space between the house and the granary. Now the Hutchens house looked like this:
William and Eliza had eleven children. William served as a school trustee, an elected alderman to Ogden City Council, and a counselor in the Lynne Ward who managed all the ward business. Eliza was descended from a wealthy family in England, and she kept the house meticulously. On two occasions she chased rude Native Americans out of her house with a broom and was ever after called “Fighting Squaw” by the laughing Natives. She earned their respect, and they treated each other squarely.
Victor G Reno (1883-1963) and Mary Allred (1889-1970)
Victor G. Reno was born in Ogden in 1883, the son of immigrant parents. He grew up in “Little Italy” on West 2nd Street and farmed all of his life on the 20-acre farm that became Aspen Acres subdivision in 2001. In 1912, at the age of 29, he purchased this home from the Hutchens for his new bride, Mary Allred.
Before Mary Allred married Vic, she worked at Shupe William Candy located at 26th and Wall Avenue in Ogden. After their marriage she canned all the family’s fruit and vegetables and stored them in a cellar under the granary. At a certain time, she began working at Thomas Dee Hospital on 24th and Harrison Blvd. Vic did not like the idea, but she worked until she could get a new kitchen built on and a bathroom so they did not have to use the outhouse anymore. When this was accomplished, she resigned the job at the hospital. 
The Reno name was synonymous with excellent apples and vegetables in the Five Points area. Vic did all his farming with two horses; at one time he had two Clydesdale horses that were quite popular. He was unique and unusual because he always used two horses even in the 1960s. He was an old school farmer until the end.
Vic always wore bib overalls and long-sleeved shirts. He had a wooden farm wagon with steel wheels; in the 1950s he drove this old wagon loaded with pea vines along Wall Avenue to the pea vinery on Highway 89. He loved farming and turned down other jobs that were offered to him.
His farm was successful and he provided for his family well. During the Depression he fed many families that were in need, anonymously leaving bags of vegetables and fresh flowers on the front porches. He donated consistently to local church charities.
Vic and Mary raised twelve children in this house. Vic was very strict with the children and expected all to help with the farm (except two of the daughters) and to work hard in school. Later his grandchildren came to grandpa’s house and also helped with the plantings and harvests.
Victor was also talented in math and could easily calculate math problems in his mind. He would challenge his grandchildren showing them a silver dollar, telling them if they could answer a math problem, they could have the silver dollar. 
Vic's brother, Leon, had a tractor and assisted Vic with farm work. From the 1920s to the 1960s many teenagers in the area worked on the Reno Farm picking apples, beans, thinning sugar beets, planting and harvesting tomatoes or potatoes, etc. When the day’s work was done, Vic Reno paid them in coins from a long leather purse with a snap on the top. 
Victor and Leon never retired; they farmed and worked until the end of their lives. Vic passed away in 1963 and Mary in 1970.
 - William Birch Hutchens, written by his daughter, manuscript.
 - Autobiography of Mary Elizabeth Hutchens Sherner, Mary Elizabeth-Her Stories, manuscript, 1933, p. 19, 38, 39.
 - P. 60.
 - P 19, 38, 68.
 - Cora Reno, Mary Jeannette Allred Reno, manuscript.
 - Cora Reno, Victor George Reno, manuscript.
 - Ibid; interview with Dave Montgomery, April 2022.