Lehi Historical Society and Archives
Lehi native, Robb Strong, was honored for five years of volunteer service to the Lehi Historical Society and Archives last week at the society’s monthly meeting.
“I was so surprised and a little embarrassed,” said Strong of the award, which was given on April 20, in the Broadbent Community Room at the Lehi Police Station. More than 20 members of the society gathered for the affair. Strong was awarded a plaque noting his years of service, a gift card and congratulations from all.
For the last five years, Strong has manned the front desk of the Archives at 99 W. Main, greeted and reminisced with visitors, helped customers find what they are looking for and scanned countless photos.
“Robb’s willingness to spend his time here, on a volunteer basis,working to preserve Lehi’s history and share it blows me away,” said Lara Bangerter, director of the Historical Society. With only one, part-time Archive employee, Strong’s service means all that much more. “He comes in two to three days a week, giving up to 15 hours a week. He makes it so we can be open when I’m not here, and he knows everyone. I could not be more appreciative for the time he spends here.”
“We all love and appreciate Robb,” said Rhea Lewis, a founding member of the society. “He is always there to help.”
“He treats his volunteer work as a part-time job,” said Judy Hansen, another founding member. “He is always in a good mood, upbeat and happy. He knows a lot about Lehi history, and if he doesn’t know something, he will find out.”
Strong’s service to the Archives began seven years ago when he became interested in two Facebook groups, “Lehi Historical Society and Archives” and “You know you’re from Lehi,” started by Lehi historian, John Haws. “They made me interested in learning more about Lehi’s history,” said Strong.
He never liked history very much as it was confusing. Also, growing up in Lehi, he never knew which stories were folklore and which were reality. “But John would put up our history. It was nostalgic, and I liked it,” said Strong, “so when John asked me to volunteer around the same time I was retiring, I decided to give it a try. I’ve been a regular fixture ever since.”
In the beginning, Strong sorted stories and pictures into different files. Now he spends most of his time scanning and running the front desk. His most current project is scanning elementary school class photos so they can be added to the Archives’ online library at lehihistory.com. “I’ve really enjoyed the yearbooks and class pictures ever since I started volunteering here,” said Strong. “I’m excited to make them easily accessible to the public.”
Some of Robb’s happiest moments at the Archives includedwhen Michelle Tucker’s “American Angels of the Old West,” came out. People bought it for the chapter on Lehi’s ownelementary school nurse, Mabel Rockwell Jones. “People would come in and talk about Mabel Jones. I liked hearing their stories.”
“Visiting with our customers is one of Robb’s biggest talents,” said Bangerter. “He can connect himself or his ancestors to just about everyone who comes in, and people love that.”
For more information about the Lehi Historical Society and Archives, go to LehiHistory.com, call 801-768-1570 or visit in person at 99 W. Main STE 100, Tuesday-Thursday from noon to 5 p.m.