LeConte Stewart Gallery

Was located at 14 East Center Street, where the Kaysville City building is today.

“A painting is just a painting unless you capture the spirit of what’s being painted – and then its real art,” said Kaysville artist LeConte Stewart when he was asked about his lifetime dedication to art. Stewart was one of Utah’s premier artists. He was primarily known for his landscapes of rural Utah – especially scenes in Davis and Morgan counties.

His 1914 move to Kaysville started a seventy-six year residency in that city. He was an art teacher and after retiring in 1956 from the art department at the University of Utah, he was a common figure on the rural back roads of Kaysville, painting the scenes he loved.

Non-Profit Corporation Established
Many Davis County residents owned LeConte Stewart paintings, but as his national popularity grew it became more and more difficult for local citizens to appreciate his artistic talents.  Consequently in 1969, five ladies—Clover Sanders, Kaye Blood, Emily Barnes, Dorothy Swan, and Dottie Barnes—spearheaded a drive to establish a Kaysville art gallery in LeConte’s honor.  They envisioned a gallery that would display some of his best Kaysville and Davis County landscape scenes.  So, in October of 1969, the Kaysville Community Art League, a non-profit 501c3 corporation, was formed to work on establishing an art gallery.  Gerald Purdy was selected as the non-profit’s president.  Thora Hough was chosen as secretary and the non-profit’s board of directors included: Henry Heath, Clover Sanders, Kathryn Welling, Dr. Robert Bitner, and Stephen Whitesides.

Between October 1969 and December of 1970, the non-profit sold gallery memberships, held fundraising events, and applied for county, state, and federal financial grants.  Over 800 citizens responded to the membership fundraising call.  Memberships were sold in the following amounts: a member $2; (an amount recommended for grade school children); a contributor $5; a subscriber $10; a sponsor $25 (an amount recommended for high school students); a patron $50 and a benefactor $100.  Ladies from the Kaysville Art, Bay View, Lantern, Athena, and Soroptimist clubs also raised funds for the project.  By January of 1971, through membership sales, fundraisers, and grants enough money was raised to start construction on a gallery building.

LeConte Stewart Art Gallery
Kaysville City officials granted the Art League a long-term lease on Kaysville’s old library/firehouse at 14 East Center Street.  Charlie Dredge and Glen Cundall were mayors during the fundraising campaign; and Kaysville contractor, Robert Iverson, was hired to remodel the firehouse building.  Over 250 individuals donated their time and labor to complete the remodeling project.  FFA (Future Farmers of America) students from Davis High School filled cracks in the masonry and painted the building—inside and out.

The LeConte Stewart Art Gallery was officially dedicated and opened to the general public on April 10, 1971.  Initially, the gallery had twenty-five art pieces.  This number fluctuated, however, as new display pieces were added and other loaned pieces were returned to their original owners.  The gallery was open from 3-5 p.m., Tuesday through Friday, and 7-9 p.m. on Saturday and was staffed by community volunteers.  Also, with time, the gallery became a community center where musical programs, lectures, art lessons, visiting art exhibits, and other community-sponsored events were held.  The gallery was a source of community pride for fifteen years.  However, in 1986, Kaysville City officials decided to build a new City Hall and the art gallery was torn down to make room for the new city hall building.

Move To New Location
During the construction of the new 
Kaysville City Hall, the LeConte paintings were transferred to the old City Hall/Kaysville City Library building.  The Kaysville Community Art League helped to make the artwork transfer; and, with the League’s help, new gallery space was added to the library building’s south wing—occupying the space that was formerly used as Kaysville City offices.  Several fine art specialists from Salt Lake City were drawn into the new gallery project.  These specialists designed a hardwood “American arts and crafts” style gallery room space with an attractive fake fireplace, and the Kaysville Community Art League raised the money to pay for the uniquely designed gallery.  Warm colors were used throughout the room because these were the colors LeConte most frequently used in his artwork.  Also, special period 1920-1930 mission furniture was selected for the room’s tables and chairs.

The new space was officially dedicated as the Kaysville Gallery of Art on April 13, 1988, by Kaysville Mayor Gerald Purdy.  Robert O. Davis, the curator of art for the LDS Museum of Church History and Art who later organized Stewart’s 2011 exhibit, prepared the gallery interior for the opening.  LeConte was ninety-one years old at the time of this gallery opening and hundreds of his relatives and friends attended the celebration where they expressed their appreciation for his outstanding work as a career artist. 

The exhibit opening included fourteen fine art pieces—seven owned by Kaysville City and seven loaned to the gallery by LeConte’s friends.  According to Bob Davis, “…half of the gallery space is reserved for pieces on loan, which will be regularly rotated.  Art pieces owned by the city will remain on permanent display.”  Some of the pieces on permanent display included: Country Funeral; Road to the Farm; The Layton Pea Vinery; Shadows in the Snow and Summer in West Kaysville.  Some of the finest works on loan from friends and institutions included: a 1930 rendering of The Ogden Valley near Huntsville; Main Street in Kaysville at Night; Farm House in Liberty, Ogden Valley; Barn in the Snow and A Day in March, South Farmington.
The gallery was open to the public during regular library hours.  Over the years, the Kaysville Art Club and other civic organizations sponsored local art exhibits, public art lectures, high school and grade school art competitions, and community art appreciation events.

Gallery Shut Down and Preservation
The gallery was closed when the Kaysville City Library became part of the Davis County library system and a new, expanded library was built in 2015.  The future of the LeConte Stewart artworks which once graced the museum is unknown.


  • Davis County Clipper, April 15, 1971; November 14, 1984; April 27, 1988.
  • Heritage Museum of Layton, LeConte Stewart: Historical Notes/Personal file.
  • The Weekly Reflex, October 30, 1969; January 12. 1971; April 15, 1971.
  • Sanders, Bill. “LeConte Stewart Art Gallery”.