KUED’s ‘Auerbach’s and ZCMI Memories’ caps producer’s ‘historic’ Utah’s career

Provided by KUED

An early photo of ZCMI department store as featured in KUED’s new documentary “Auerbach’s and ZCMI Memories,” produced by Elizabeth Searles.

SALT LAKE CITY — KUED’s premiere of its documentary “Auerbach’s and ZCMI Memories” on Dec. 4 marked the end of an era for the TV station.

The show is the last to air from producer Elizabeth Searles, who retires in February. A hallmark of Searles’ career has been making documentaries that help to preserve unique facets of Utah’s history and take a nostalgic look at the state’s past.

“I was happy that this was my last one because I had a good time and I like the product,” Searles told the Deseret News.

Other productions Searles has done over the years include “Utah in the 50s,” “Salt Lake City: Once Upon A Time,” “Remembering Uncle Golden” and “Utah World War II Stories,” which won a Rocky Mountain Emmy Award for best historical documentary.

The inspiration for Searles’ latest production was the stories of Salt Lake City’s historic department stores Auerbach’s and ZCMI that came up in some of her past projects.

“They were the big titans of Salt Lake City and they’re gone now, and so all that’s left is memories of those stores,” Searles said. “It’s only going to be another 30 years or so (until) there won’t be people alive that remember ZCMI … so I think it’s important to get those memories before they’re gone.”

Provided by KUED

An early photo of ZCMI department store as featured in KUED’s new documentary “Auerbach’s and ZCMI Memories,” produced by Elizabeth Searles.

A Minnesota native who attended the University of Utah in the mid-’70s, Searles never entered Auerbach’s or ZCMI, but her job as a producer has allowed her to connect with these stores and other places of historical significance in Utah.

“I’ve never been in them, but I feel like I have through other people’s…

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