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Bryce Canyon, in southwestern Utah, was not formed from erosion initiated from a central stream and thus is not really a canyon; it is actually a collection of giant natural amphitheaters formed by headward erosion along the eastern side of the Paunsaugunt (Paiute for "home of the beaver") plateau that are distinguished by hoodoos, geological structures formed by frost weathering and stream erosion of the river and lake bed sedimentary rocks. The Paiute called the hoodoos Anka-ku-was-a-wits ("red painted faces") and believed that they were the Legend People whom the trickster Coyote had turned to stone. The canyon was named after Ebenezer Bryce, the designer of the Pine Valley Chapel, the oldest chapel still in continuous use by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons), who homesteaded near the "canyon" from 1874-1880, but major John Wesley Powell had surveyed it in 1972. President Warren G. Harding designated the area as a national monument in 1923, and his successor Calvin Coolidge redesignated it as a national park. His successor Herbert Hoover annexed an adjoining area in 1931.
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