Category Archives: Native Americans

Anasazi State Park

Published / by Morgan Robinson / Leave a Comment

Write-up by: Morgan Robinson

Placed By: Natural History Museum of Utah

GPS Coordinates: 37.9107959, -111.4238112

Historical Marker Text: Garfield County, Combs Village Site, 50 Years Natural History Museum of Utah, Natural History Markers of Utah, 2020,

Photo By: Morgan Robinson

Extended Research:

Photo By: Morgan Robinson

The Combs Village is an old Native American historical site that contains building ruins from the Anasazi people. The Anasazi people, now known as the Ancestral Puebloans, and Fremont people show evidence of occupying this territory. There is historical evidence of both groups being here and there are many artifacts at this site that represent both of these groups. One explanation for this is that this could have been a trade center for Native American people in 1075.[1] Overall historians at the University of Utah have claimed that this site was primarily a settlement for the Ancestral Puebloans that was used as a trading hub for the rest of the surrounding Native American communities.

            The Ancestral Puebloans lived and worked in the dwellings at the Anasazi State Park. Some of the buildings were used as living quarters while others were used as storage rooms. There is also an Ancestral Puebloan pit house at this site. Pit houses were used for religious proceedings. These people were agriculturally based people, “they grew corn, beans, and squash.” [2] They also, grew, “wild seeds and grains [that] were ground into flour using a mano and metate.” [3]  Furthermore, they created pottery that served many different purposes. The museum also displays artifacts that depict game playing, hunting, and participating in religious ceremonies at the site.

Photo By: Morgan Robinson
Photo By: Morgan Robinson

When the Ancestral Puebloans left this site, “about 160 years after the village was established, […] much of the village was burned.” [4] They moved away from the original site where they had settled and burned their entire village when they left. This site went hundreds of years before being discovered again but in 1976, this site was named to the National Historic Registry.[5] Since being discovered, archeologists have excavated and searched the site and found many of the artifacts that were used to establish our current knowledge of the site and the people that lived there. Visitors will find the remanent of the dwellings the Ancestral Puebloans lived in backed up against modern architecture. Visitors will also see a museum with many artifacts that were discovered at the site just in front of the actual dwellings.

Photo By: Morgan Robinson
Photo By: Morgan Robinson

The museum at the Anasazi State Park has many artifacts that show the ways in which the ancestral Puebloans lived. They have pots, arrowheads, a shoe, ladles, bowls, basket fragments, pieces that were used to play a game, and more artifacts in the back of the museum with information about these different artifacts.  The “new Anasazi State Park will be dedicated at 1 p.m. on Saturday, April 19” according to a newspaper article in the Garfield County Newspaper in 1997.[6] They held events prior to the dedication ceremony in order to celebrate this momentous occasion. Currently, this site is run by the Utah State Parks. Over many years, they have offered, “Utahns of today and tomorrow a chance to learn about Utah’s ancient people and their culture.” [7] Overall, the museum and the ruins at Anasazi State Park highlight a very important time period in America and especially in Utah history.

For Further Reference:

Explorer Corps Marker: Garfield County.” Natural History Museum of Utah, 10 June 2021.

Smith, Shelley J., et al. “The Anasazi People.” Intrigue of the Past: Investigating Archaeology, Utah Interagency Task Force on Cultural Resources, Salt Lake City, UT, 1992, pp. 72–79.

Whiterocks Named to National Historical Registry.” Vernal Express, 29 Jan. 1976, pp. 14–14.

“New Anasazi Museum Will be Dedicated on Saturday,” Garfield County News, 17 April 1997.

Donner Trail, 1846

Published / by Connor VanWagoner / 2 Comments on Donner Trail, 1846

Write-up by Connor Van Wagoner

Placed by: Utah Pioneer Trails and Landmarks Association, 1931

GPS Coordinates: 40.772159, -111.920372

Historical Marker Text:

 The Donner Party led by George and Jacob Donner and James F. Reed passed here and crossed Jordan River nearby About September 2, 1846 This party, consisting of 91 persons, 35 of them children, was delayed 2 weeks building a road via Emigration Canyon, lost some wagons and many animals crossing Great Salt Lake Desert and became snowbound in the Sierra Nevada mountains where 35 of them perished that winter


Extended Research:

            During the 19th century, “Manifest Destiny” came to dominate American culture. Manifest Destiny asserted that the United States had a god-given right to settle and expand the country westward. In hindsight, it is difficult to explain just how influential the idea of “Manifest Destiny” was on the average American. The coinage of this term in 1845 was coming fresh off the Second Great Awakening in the early 19th century, a strong and widespread religious revival that instilled deep religious beliefs and values amongst many Americans. These beliefs at the time related Christian values with civility. America largely viewed the “unsettled” West as a region lacking Christianity and thus lacking civility. Christianity provided justification for Americans to expand westward and the continued encroachment on Native lands to fill the region with America’s idea of civilization.[1] As this intense religious and expansionist fervor spread widely across the United States, Americans were much more inclined to grip tight in their minds their religious right to settle in the west. As a result, settlers from far and wide packed up their things to seek fortune and better lives in the west.[2]

(Courtesy of the Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C.

            One of these groups of settlers was known as the Donner Party, also referred to as the Donner-Reed Party. In 1846, just one year after the coinage of “Manifest Destiny,” this group of settlers left their hometown of Illinois to follow through on their own Manifest Destiny. The Donner party itself can be seen as a reflection on the broader rhetoric of westward expansion and the “development of American national identity” following the Second Great Awakening and with the expansion of “Manifest Destiny.”[3] A man named James Clyman, who was part of the Lansford W. Hastings party, traveled east from California to Utah. Hastings was the author of a prominent Emigrant’s Guide to California and he hoped to attract overland migrants to try a new route across the salt desert, a route he promoted as a short cut. Clyman, as a member of Hasting’s group, would prove to be incredibly influential among several Donner Party members.

Along this trek, Clyman wrote in detail about his experience on this journey from west to east and the potential roadblocks that other settlers might encounter. Within Clyman’s diaries, historians can see early signs of potential struggles that settlers may encounter in the Mountain Dell area. Clyman wrote, “A Large vally seem[s] to run a great distance north waard [sic] The…earthe is much dryer so also it is much Looser in as much that our animals many timis sink up to their knees in the dry earth…[we have] too many for this rout at so early a season of the year… we will probably divide our company in a few days.”[4]

The difficult terrain of the region caused immense difficulties for travelers as their horses would oftentimes get stuck in the terrain. “I begin to conclude that californea Horses are not a hardy race of animals,” Clyman says with a sense of hubris, putting the blame of the difficulties on the animals instead of the route and the company itself. Within this diary, Clyman also discusses the vast and oddly shaped “concreete” rocks that devour the region. In his writings, he seems to downplay the rough terrain and instead describe the region as barren and desolate.[5] Many people like the Donner Party interpreted this as a safe route. The Donner Party, at least many of its members, were heavily influenced by Clyman and other Hastings party members to try the Hasting’s cutoff. This reliance on the Hastings party route in the Mountain Dell area would prove to be an absolutely disastrous decision for the Donner Party.

(Photo of James Clyman. Photo within the public domain)

            Had the Donner Party taken already established routes, perhaps the well known disaster of their group could have been avoided. Nevertheless, members of the Donner Party decided to follow the so-called “Hastings Route.” After Clyman’s eventual successful trek through this passage, Lansford Hastings (who never actually went on the trek himself before publishing his emigrant’s guide) then began to encourage emigrants to travel his supposed cutoff. He claimed that this route was a direct passage to California.[6] He attracted four migrant companies to try his route. The fourth settler group to test out this new route was the Donner Party.

Even before the Donner Party reached the Salt Lake Valley, the difficult decision on which route to take dominated the party’s daily conversations. After fierce arguments and a potential murder in cold blood, the party made their way down the “Hastings Route.” The first three migrant groups went via Weber Canyon, a difficult route for wagons. The Donner Party instead blazed a new route through what came to be called Emigration Canyon. In blazing the new trail they lost valuable time and made slow progress. There were no signs, no markers, and hardly any trails left behind from the Hastings route. One scholar writes, “They had no road to follow, only the faintest markings of a trail left by Clyman.”[7] In an account from Donner Party member Jacob Wright Harlon, he describes how the trek from Fort Bridger to Salt Lake was “difficult and disagreeable.” He discusses how the grassy and rocky terrain made it incredibly hard to travel and that many members of the party argued about which way to go. He notes how some members went ahead of others, rendering other subgroups of the Donner Party to be left behind for several days. He also describes traveling through the Great Salt Lake. They lost multiple cattle and the saltiness of the water made it almost undrinkable. “They were so exhausted and spirit-broken,” Harlan writes.[8]

(An area in which the Donner Party traveled through the Great Salt Lake Desert. P0220 The Great Salt Lake Photograph Collection, P0220n01_01_02a)

The challenges faced by the Donner Party are difficult to put into words and accurately explain just how terrible the conditions were for this group of settlers. The Donner Party encountered incredibly difficult terrain to traverse, as described by Clyman in his diaries, which inevitably resulted in a plethora of setbacks and delays. Their struggles crossing Utah cost them valuable time and led to them being pinned down in an early winter storm in the Sierra Nevada mountain range. Their wagons and animals were finding it increasingly difficult to continue their journey. As they continued to face difficult terrain, many of the emigrants crossed the Great Salt Lake Desert. Traveling through the desert resulted in many of their animals stampeding to search for water. Evidently, the Donner Party lost many of these animals. The loss of these animals had severe implications for the Donner Party. Not only did they depend on many of these animals for food, they also depended on them for pulling the enormous weight of their wagons.[9] Facing yet another setback, the Donner Party needed to regroup and cache their supplies.

The Donner Party continued through the desert to the Sierra Nevada region in which Native American attacks saw even further reduction in their livestock supply. These Native American encounters display the disconnect between “Manifest Destiny’s” ideas of the west as an empty and tameable land to what this area really was: an already widely inhabited region filled with distinct and rich cultures, practices, societies, and groups of people. Native attacks on the Donner Party were far from baseless. Settlers encroached onto their land and they attacked the Donner Party in an attempt to preserve their land and their people. While the attacks were incredibly damaging for the Donner Party, it is imperative to understand the threat the Donner Party posed to Native Americans in this region.[10]

Just when they thought it could not get any worse, an early disastrous snowstorm struck the Sierra Nevadas. This resulted in the Donner Party being stranded in the region for nearly four months.[11] Mary Ann Graves, another member of the Donner Party, documents the struggles she and the party faced. She writes, “Our travels and sufferings are too horrible to relate.” In her company of 25-30 men, she states that only four survived the perilous winter. Her father died on Christmas eve and they were left without fire and food to endure the storm. She describes how two Native Americans were murdered in order to eat their flesh. It is unclear just how this decision came to fruition, but it highlights the unbelievable desperation the Donner Party faced. Not wanting to kill their own and looking down the barrel of death, the party decided to commit two murders in an attempt to alleviate their dire situation. Perhaps it was revenge for the previous attacks they faced or simply just desperation, but these murders display how the Donner Party was now willing to do anything in order to increase their chances of survival no matter how unjustifiable their actions may be. Her own family members died and they had to resort to eating their corpses. Once relief from other companies came, she described how some had to be left behind as they were too weak to continue. An argument ensued between two men in the party resulting in one of them being stabbed to death. She beautifully yet horrifyingly says, “No tongue can exceed in description the reality.”[12]

           (Artist’s interpretation of the Donner Party winter Courtesy of Encyclopedia Britannica, © North Wind Picture Archives.

The Second Great Awakening and the idea of “Manifest Destiny” drastically altered the societal and cultural dynamic of the United States in the 19th century. Americans migrated West because they believed they could live better lives there. It is important to remember at this time, these western regions of the United States still belonged to Mexico and not the United States. Nevertheless, this cultural and societal shift in the United States resulted in emigration to Mexican and Western American regions. Influenced by this changing rhetoric, the Donner Party was one of the groups that decided to manifest their own destiny in the West following the religious revival in the Second Great Awakening. After reading about an alleged shortcut to California, the Donner Party faced indescribable hardships in the Great Salt Lake and Sierra Nevada Regions. The Donner Party might have been using the best information available at the time when deciding to take the “Hastings Route” instead of established routes. Nevertheless, understanding the decision making process behind this decision, the encounters they faced on their westward journey, and the harrowing struggles they faced allows us to better understand and remember the story of the Donner Party. Through analyzing the Donner Party, we can better understand how the general shifts in American beliefs affected the average American, how distrust and dissent amongst a group can lead to disaster, and how, maybe, arrogance can lead to disaster for others, as it did with the Donner Party.

The historical marker placed by the Utah Trails and Landmarks Association offers no explanation of the encounters the Donner Party faced when traveling west or even the reasons why they traveled west. Though Americans might identify the party with cannibalism and death, the more nuanced information of their travels westward has fallen by the wayside. As this marker was placed over ninety years ago, it is crucial we update this marker to better remember the Donner Party’s story in the modern day. In doing so, we can remember the deeper and more powerful story of the Donner Party that has been eroded over the years.

For Further Reference:

Battle, Cullen. “Ghosts of Mountain Dell: Transportation and Technological Change in the Wasatch Mountains.” Utah Historical Quarterly 86, no. 1 (2018): 6–23.

Clyman, James, and Charles L. Camp. “James Clyman: His Diaries and Reminiscences (Continued).” California Historical Society Quarterly 5, no. 2 (1926): 109–38.

Conroy-Krutz, Emily. “Introduction.” In Christian Imperialism: Converting the World in the Early American Republic. Cornell University Press, 2018.

Dixon, Kelly J., Shannon A. Novak, Gwen Robbins, Julie M. Schablitsky, G. Richard Scott, and Guy L. Tasa. “Men, Women, and Children Starving: Archeology of the Donner Family Camp.” American Antiquity 75, no. 3 (2010): 627–56.

Graves, Mary Ann and Johnson, Kristin, ed. “Mary Ann Graves (1826–1891).” In Unfortunate Emigrants, 126–31. Logan, UT. Utah State University Press, 1996.

Grayson, Donald K. “Donner Party Deaths: A Demographic Assessment.” Journal of Anthropological Research 46, no. 3 (1990): 223–42.

Harlan, Jacob Wright and Kristin Johnson, ed . “Jacob Wright Harlan (1828–1902).” In Unfortunate Emigrants: Narratives of the Donner Party. Logan, UT: Utah State University Press, 1996.

Isenberg, Andrew C., and Thomas Richards. “Alternative Wests: Rethinking Manifest Destiny.” Pacific Historical Review 86, no. 1 (2017): 4–17.

Johnson, Kristin. “Sufferers in the Mountains .” In An Archaeology of Desperation: Exploring the Donner Party’s Alder Creek Camp. University of Oklahoma Press, 2020.

Stuckey, Mary E. “The Donner Party and the Rhetoric of Westward Expansion.” Rhetoric and Public Affairs 14, no. 2 (2011): 229–60

[1] Emily Conroy-Krutz, “Introduction,” in Christian Imperialism: Converting the World in the Early

American Republic (Cornell University Press, 2018).

[2] Andrew C. Isenberg and Thomas Richards , “Alternative Wests: Rethinking Manifest Destiny,” Pacific Historical Review 86, no. 1 (2017): pp. 4-17.

[3] Mary E. Stuckey, “The Donner Party and the Rhetoric of Westward Expansion,” Rhetoric & Public Affairs 14, no. 2 (2011): pp. 229-260,

[4] James Clyman and Charles L. Camp, “James Clyman: His Diaries and Reminiscences (Continued),”California Historical Society Quarterly 5, no. 4 (1926): pp. 378-401.

[5] ibid

[6] Donald K. Grayson, “Donner Party Deaths: A Demographic Assessment,” Journal of Anthropological Research 46, no. 3 (1990): pp. 223-242.

[7] Cullen Battle, “Ghosts of Mountain Dell: Transportation and Technological Change in the Wasatch Mountains,” Utah Historical Quarterly 86, no. 1 (January 2018): pp. 6-23.

[8] Jacob Wright Harlan , “Jacob Wright Harlan (1828–1902),” in Unfortunate Emigrants: Narratives of the Donner Party (Logan, UT: Utah State University Press, 1996).

[9] Kelly J. Dixon et al., “‘Men, Women, and Children Starving’: Archaeology of the Donner Family Camp,” American Antiquity 75, no. 3 (2010): pp. 627-656.

[10] Kristin Johnson, “Sufferers in the Mountains,” in An Archaeology of Desperation: Exploring the Donner Party’s Alder Creek Camp (Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 2020).

[11] Kelly J. Dixon et al., “‘Men, Women, and Children Starving’: Archaeology of the Donner Family Camp,”

[12] Mary Ann Graves, “Mary Ann Graves (1826–1891),” in Unfortunate Emigrants: Narratives of the Donner Party (Logan, UT: Utah State University Press, 1996).

Suicide Rock and Reservoir Historical Marker

Published / by Sam Scott / 2 Comments on Suicide Rock and Reservoir Historical Marker

Suicide Rock and Reservoir Historical Marker

Write up by Samuel Scott

Placed by: Sons of Utah Pioneers Holladay Chapter, No. 79, dedicated 1996

Location of the Historical Marker near  Suicide Rock

Latitude 40°42’34.67″N

Longitude 111°47’49.57″W

Historical Marker Text:


“One of the foremost sights that met the eye of the early travelers when they reached the mouth of Parley’s Canyon before entering into the valley of the Great Salt Lake, was a huge mass of red rock which stood in the middle of the mouth of the canyon. It consisted mainly of red sandstone and had stood as a sentinel for centuries.

For hundreds of years, it stood as a watchtower for the Indians until, as the story goes, an Indian maiden upon learning of the death of her brave, leaped from the top, to her death on the rocks below, giving it the name of Suicide Rock. Now, it is a billboard for the youth who dare to climb its heights with a paint brush or spray can.

In the settlement of the valley with a constant increase in population, the water from the various canyon streams of the Wasatch Range provided irrigation as well as culinary water for the people. In order to free up more of the canyon water for culinary use, a canal was built from Jordan Narrows conveying Jordan River water to the east bench of the Salt Lake valley. The Jordan and Salt Lake City Canal was begun in 1879, and completed in 1882, and has remained in constant use since. The canyon streams were thereafter enhanced with reservoirs to catch and retain the spring runoff, for use in the drier seasons.

In about 1891 a reservoir was built on the east side of Suicide Rock to help contain the spring run-off from washing out the farms west of the canyon mouth, as well as to help provide a way of getting water from the stream to where it was needed. From this reservoir, and ditches from the canyon stream above the reservoir, culinary along with irrigation water was conveyed to the various farms below as well as up to the plateaus on the north and south sides of the hollow which were located above the canal. This reservoir served for many years until an extremely wet spring one year washed out part of the reservoir and some of the railroad tracks and roadway in the canyon. Culinary water supplies had been further enhanced by this time and a direct connection was made to use Parley’s Canyon water, so the reservoir was never replaced.

Of the stream, the roadway, and the railroad line that ran in the narrow spaces between the rock and canyon sidewalls, only the stream remains.”

Site No. 79                  Holladay Chapter, Sons of Utah Pioneers          Dedicated 1996

Suicide Rock on February 9, 2022.

Extended Research:

Suicide Rock is located at the mouth of Parleys Canyon, a canyon named after the Mormon pioneer Parley P. Pratt who had scouted the canyon in 1848.[1] The sandstone rock formation that is known today as Suicide Rock was also known as Sentinel Rock, because it is thought that it was used as a lookout point for American Indians long before the arrival of Mormon settlers. The name Suicide Rock became more popular after a story circulated about an American Indian maiden who threw herself off of the rock out of the grief of losing her brave lover. A similar story is told about “Squaw Peak” in Utah county of “one squaw killing herself falling from a precipice” following a military skirmish, and Suicide Rock in Idyllwild, California bears a legend of an American Indian princess and her lover committing suicide rather than being separated. The popularity of this trope over a wide variety of areas makes it unlikely to be factual, and it possibly emerged as a response to Helen Hunt Jackson’s novel Ramona, published in 1884, which popularized the tale. Various locations across the country picked up on the theme and used it in order to promote tourism.[2]

In 1892 Salt Lake City officials built a reservoir adjacent to the rock in order to supply culinary water from Parleys Creek to the valley. It was Utah’s first municipal culinary water storage reservoir.[3] The construction of the reservoir would have negative consequences for a community named Mountain Dell. The water provided by the reservoir during this time was unfiltered, which meant that contamination could easily lead to widespread illness. Since the community of Mountain Dell lived upstream from the reservoir they suddenly posed a threat of contaminating Salt Lake City’s drinking water with their animals and waste. This was confirmed in 1903 when a typhoid outbreak afflicted hundreds in Salt Lake City. The source of the epidemic was traced back to water from Parleys Creek, and a local farm situated upstream.[4] According to historian Cullen Battle, “In Mountain Dell, the city began buying up properties with animal lots and outhouses next to the creeks. The small landowners were the first to go, and the village quickly de-populated. Soon, the post office closed, and the school district and ward dissolved. By about 1907, most residents had given up their homes and farms, and Mountain Dell became—and remains today—an area devoted to watershed protection.” Nevertheless, the process of buying out and removing landowners on Mountain Dell lasted until 1920, and a case involving Seymour B. Young went as far as the Utah Supreme Court in 1915, ultimately ruling in favor of Salt Lake City officials.[5]

The reservoir eventually fell out of use after it experienced flooding, and advancements in technology along with the construction of Little Dell Reservoir led to its demise. Since then, Suicide Rock has become a popular recreation spot for young adults. Many of Utah’s high school and collegiate students continue the tradition of spray-painting, or “tagging,” the rock each year, rendering it into an ever-changing illustration of the times. In addition to this, one might also discover the not-so-well kept secret pastime of “shooting the tube” within walking distance of Suicide Rock. A rite of passage for some, anyone looking to cool off can temporarily dam up the entrance of a tunnel carrying Parley’s Creek water under the freeway. When the makeshift dam is pulled, the sudden rush of water propels thrill seekers through on a ride to the other side! A link to a video of the activity is included below. [6]

Utahns preparing to “shoot the tube.”[7]

Waterworks at mouth of Parleys Canyon, circa 1900. Salt Lake City built this reservoir seven miles downstream of Mountain Dell in the early 1890s to supply drinking water to city residents. C. R. Savage Photo.” [8]

Image shows Suicide Rock at the base of what was once Parley’s Canyon Reservoir.” [9]

Water flows over a remnant of the wall of the old Parley’s Canyon reservoir.” [10]

Aerial view of Parley’s Canyon Reservoir[11]

“Parley’s Creek – Suicide Rock, Flood Damage” Ca. 1910 [12]

Spray paint decorates the entirety of Suicide Rock

Photo by Joe Penacoli[13]

For Further Reference

Secondary Sources

Battle, Cullen, “Ghosts of Mountain Dell: Transportation and Technological Change in the Wasatch Mountains,” Utah Historical Quarterly 86, No. 1 (2018).

Farmer, Jared. On Zion’s Mount : Mormons, Indians, and the American Landscape. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2008.

First Ascent of the Nose, Suicide Rock,”, (accessed April 8, 2022).

Pugh, Jeremy. “A Unique Utah Summer Tradition: ‘Shooting the Tube,’” Salt Lake Magazine, July 27, 2018.

Summit Signature: 27J Suicide Rock,” Hundred Peaks Section, Angeles Chapter of the Sierra Club, accessed 03/29/2020.

Primary Sources

 “Parley’s Creek – Suicide Rock, Flood Damage,” University of Utah, J Willard Marriot Digital Library. Last modified May 6, 2021.

Korn, J. Roderic, “The Golden Pass Road,” Utah Historical Quarterly, vol. 19 (1951).

Parley’s Canyon Reservoir P.13,” University of Utah, J. Willard Marriot Digital Library, Last modified May 6, 2021.

[1] J. Roderic Korn, “The Golden Pass Road,” Utah Historical Quarterly, vol. 19 (1951), 229-236.

[2]Summit Signature: 27J Suicide Rock,” Hundred Peaks Section, Angeles Chapter of the Sierra Club, accessed 03/29/2020.

Jared Farmer, On Zion’s Mount : Mormons, Indians, and the American Landscape, (Harvard University Press, 2008), 274-275.

[3] Cullen Battle, “Ghosts of Mountain Dell: Transportation and Technological Change in the Wasatch Mountains,” Utah Historical Quarterly, volume 86, no. 1 (2018).

[4] Cullen Battle, “Ghosts of Mountain Dell: Transportation and Technological Change in the Wasatch Mountains,” Utah Historical Quarterly, volume 86, no. 1 (2018)

[5] Cullen Battle, “Ghosts of Mountain Dell: Transportation and Technological Change in the Wasatch Mountains,” Utah Historical Quarterly, volume 86, no. 1 (2018)

[6]  Jeremy Pugh, “A Unique Utah Summer Tradition: ‘Shooting the Tube,’” Salt Lake Magazine, July 27, 2018.

[7] Jeremy Pugh, “A Unique Utah Summer Tradition: ‘Shooting the Tube,’” Salt Lake Magazine, July 27, 2018.

[8] Cullen Battle, “Ghosts of Mountain Dell: Transportation and Technological Change in the Wasatch Mountains,” Utah Historical Quarterly, volume 86, no. 1 (2018).

[9]Reservoir at Parley’s Canyon, Inspecting Conduit,” J. Willard Marriot Digital Library, The University of Utah, Last modified May 6, 2021.

[10]Parley’s Reservoir,” J. Willard Marriot Digital Library, The University of Utah, Last modified May 6, 2021.

[11]Parley’s Canyon Reservoir P.13,” J. Willard Marriot Digital Library, University of Utah, Last modified May 6, 2021.

[12]Parley’s Creek – Suicide Rock, Flood Damage,” J. Willard Marriot Digital Library, University of Utah, Last modified May 6, 2021.

[13]First Ascent of the Nose, Suicide Rock,”, (accessed April 8, 2022).

Indian Trails Monument

Published / by Colbie Hymas / Leave a Comment

Write-up by Colbie Hymas

Placed by: The Sons of Utah Pioneers

GPS Coordinates: N 41 degrees 19.227 W 111 degrees 53.922

Historical Marker Text (1):

Early explorations:

Indian bands of the Shoshone tribe were located throughout northern Utah, southern Idaho, and western Wyoming long before the advent of the white men. Northern Utah was inhabited by hunting and wild berry – pine nuts – roots gathering bands of the Northwest Shoshones and some Ute Indians. The Indians wandered from area to area on a network of well-traveled trails throughout the region. 

    Pathfinders, trappers, and explorers followed the well-worn Indian trails through Utah territory. In May 1825 Peter Skene Ogden of the Hudson’s Bay Company led a party of trappers south from Cache Valley on trail #2 and in seven days the party took 585 beaver pelts in New Hole as Ogden called the valley. The Ogden party left from New Hole and followed trail #4 south to the Weber River. After skirmish with some American trappers at Mountain Green Ogden retraced his steps North, never descending to the lower valley. Mountain men called the valley Ogden Hole, such men as Smith, Fitzpatrick, Weber, Sublette, Bridger, Russell, Clyman, and Goodyear. In 1843 John C. Fremont and his expedition traveled south on an Indian trail from Fort Hall, arriving at the Weber River they launched a boat and visited the island in the Great Salt Lake which now bears his name. In 1849 Capt. J. Howard Stansbury led an expedition of Topographical Engineers of the U.S. Army to the west. He left the Donner Trail south of Evanston and descended the Bear River until he found “an Indian lodge trail” going west (Trail #3). “We soon arrived at the headwaters of Pumbar (Lost) Creek, a tributary of the Weber”. The party took Trail #1 west and visited Brownsville, now called Ogden. Later while encamped on the west side of Promontory Mountain Capt. Stansbury noticed indications of the area’s having been inundated at some remote time by “a vast inland sea”. Stansbury thus became the first person to record the existence of an ancient Lake Bonneville. 

Historical Marker Text (2):

Five Indian Lodge Trails radiated from Ogden Valley long before the arrival of White men. Trail #1 ascended North Ogden Creek to North Ogden Pass where we are, veered to the North as it descended to the valley. Trail #2 crossed the divide north of Liberty and descended the South Fork of the Little Bear River to Cache Valley. Trail #3 went east up South Fork, ascended Skin Toe Trail between Causey Creek and South Fork, crossed Lost Creek on its way to the Bear River north of Evanston. Trail #4 went up Hawkins Creek south of Huntsville, over the low hills and connected with a trail on the Weber at Mountain Green. Trail #5 went west down Ogden Canyon to the narrows near the west end of the canyon, ascended the mountain between Cold Water and Warm Water creeks, continued west above the cliffs and emerged from the canyon near 21st street. All of these trails joined other migratory trails. 

Historical Marker Text (3):

Pioneer Settlements:

Brigham Young learned much about the geography of the region near the Great Salt Lake from the writings of a few of the mountain men and from interviews with others. Soon after the arrival of the first company of Mormon Pioneers in the “valley” in July 1847 Brigham Young sent exploring parties north and south along the Indian trails west of the Wasatch Mountains to locate places for settlements. One of these parties contacted Mills Goodyear at Fort Buenaventura. In 1848 Brigham Young sent a party to explore the country around Bear Lake. The group went up Weber Canyon and took Trail #4 to Ogden Hole and then Trail #3 up South Fork on their way to Bear Lake. In 1854 Brigham Young sent an expedition over Trail #1 to find a shorter route to Fort Bridger for the settlers near Ogden so that they would not need to go via Salt Lake City. This expedition took the first wagon into the valley in (Ogden Hole). Charles F. Middleton wrote, “The first wagon that was taken into the valley was taken by hand of man. No mules or oxen hauled that vehicle. I steered the wagon. The wheels were locked, and my companions held onto the vehicle with ropes to prevent its breaking loose and dashing down the steep incline.) In 1856 Ogden Hole became a summer grazing area for cattle. The next year the first herd houses were built where Eden is located. The first permanent settlers arrived in 1858 and located near the herd houses. Huntsville and then Liberty were settled soon thereafter. A toll road through Ogden Canyon constructed in 1860 by Lorin Farr and Isaac Goodale, subsequently became the main route into Ogden Valley. Each summer for a number of years Indian bands passed through the valley over the old trails on their way to and from their hunting grounds. The Indians were not hostile for they had learned that they could get more food by bartering with leather goods and by the settlers being aware of their needs than by fighting. 

Extended Research:

The Indian Trails Monument stands in the North Ogden Canyon and showcases a series of trails created by the movements of early Native American tribes, primarily the Northwestern band of Shoshone. The monument was placed by the Sons of Utah Pioneers and benefited from the research of people such as Mae Parry who was a very impactful Native American leader in Weber County, Utah.[1] Parry and others established a commitment to Native American history in the area, as it had largely been forgotten. The monument not only traces five Indian trails, but also gives a brief history of the early peoples who used these trails, such as Native Americans, early mountain men, and Mormon pioneers.

Long before white men arrived in the areas now known as Huntsville, Liberty, Eden, Ogden, and Cache Valley, Utah, they were inhabited by the Northwest band of Shoshone Indians. The Native Americans who lived there called the area “Opecarry,” which translated to “stick in the head.”[2] The Shoshone Indians were spread out around Utah and Idaho, however, the Indian Trails Monument in North Ogden Utah, specifically documents the trails established and used by the Northwestern band. These native peoples were nomadic hunters and gatherers who moved from place to place in search of water, edible vegetation, and wild game. They traveled with the seasons and learned over time the best places to obtain the greatest amounts of resources at the most opportune times. This took the Northwestern band into Northern and Eastern Nevada where they would harvest pine nuts, into southeastern Idaho where they found hot springs in the winter, and many other places throughout the year.[3]

Older Shoshone Indians used the term “So-So-Goi” to describe themselves, the term translates to “those that travel on foot.”[4] Before horses were introduced to the Northwestern band, this is exactly how they traveled, and from the young to the old, everyone was expected to pull their weight. The concept of sharing what one had, even with a stranger, was deeply engrained in the Northwestern band, and the concept of personal property did not exist. Helping neighbors and receiving help from neighbors was a way of survival for these early Indians, and therefore, they were constantly moving between different encampments of Shoshone and other nearby native groups for means of trading, socializing, and establishing kinship networks.

            After years and years of travel between encampments, and areas known to harbor significant amounts of resources, the Shoshone established well-worn trails. These trails could be followed to get to several places in Northern Utah. The trails not only traversed large areas of Northern Utah, but they also connected to other migratory trails, and could be followed into places such as Fort Hall and other important sites in early Utah. As a result of their useability and effectiveness, early trappers in Utah also utilized these trails. The monument discusses the paths and trails early trappers such as Peter Skene Ogden, John C. Fremont, and Captain Howard Stansbury traversed in the area.

After coming into the area and having success trapping beaver, Peter Skene Ogden of the Hudson Bay Company would name this area “Ogden Hole.”[5] Some of these trails and expeditions even led John C. Fremont to the Great Salt Lake where he would discover the island that now bears his name and record other important scientific information about the Great Salt Lake. Many other early trappers and mountain men used these trails to move from area to area trapping and trading goods and interacting with Native tribes.[6]

            The Mormon pioneers followed the same pattern and utilized the Native American trails for their own purposes. When the Mormons began arriving in the area, Chief Sagwitch led the Northwestern band of Shoshone. Contrary to the mountain men who often had good relationships with native tribes and integrated themselves into their culture and societies, the early Mormons often clashed with native tribes. When Chief Sagwitch learned of a group of Mormon pioneers coming their way, he went to meet their leader, Brigham Young, to offer peace and communication, as well as discuss stewardship over the land. Due to Brigham Young being ill, the Shoshone chief instead met with Heber C. Kimball who told him that the land belonged to the Lord, and the Mormons planned to cultivate and plant it. This is not what the Shoshone chief hoped to hear, but due to the peaceful and neighborly nature of the Northwestern band, Chief Sagwitch and his tribe continued to offer peace and assistance to the Mormon pioneers for years to come.[7]

            The Mormon pioneers continued to use these trails for several reasons. As more saints continued to arrive in the Mormon settlements, farmland became scarce, and Brigham Young sent out scouts to find new land to settle. These scouts would undoubtably have used these well-worn trails as they moved through the area looking for promising ground. Furthermore, Brigham Young sent missionaries to find native tribes and assimilate them into Mormon society. Native Americans were thought to be descendants of the Lamanites, an important group of people in the Book of Mormon, which is the leading spiritual text of the Mormon faith. Therefore, missionaries would seek out native tribes to teach them of their importance to the Mormon faith and attempt to convert them. This was successful with many native tribes, especially the Northwestern band of Shoshone.[8] Many Shoshone converted and continued to share this land with their new neighbors.

            The trails blazed by early Native Americans were important for many people occupying the area throughout the years. By traversing these trails, Native Americans were able to thrive in Northern Utah by migrating with the seasons and working with the land. The trails later made it significantly easier for mountain men to gain access to the frontier and trap animals and make early trading connections with native tribes. Furthermore, the Mormon pioneers would have had limited success moving throughout the area to settle and convert Native Americans had it not been for these trails that literally acted as a “golden brick rode” to the most resource rich areas, and native tribes.

The trails continue to be used today for recreational purposes and are favorite hiking trails for many residing in or near these areas. The history of these trails makes hiking them even more fascinating for many people, and through the work of the Sons of Utah Pioneers, and people such as Mae Parry and Darren Parry, author of The Bear River Massacre, the history of Native Americans and their homelands is being preserved and shared to the greater public.

For Further Reference:

Primary Sources:

Stansbury, Howard. An Expedition to the Valley of the Great Salt Lake of Utah. Philadelphia, PA: Lippincott, Grambo & CO, 1855.

Miller, David E. “Journal of Peter Skene Ogden; Snake Expedition, 1825.” Peter Skene Ogden’s Journal of his Expedition to Utah, 1825. Accessed March 1, 2022.

Secondary Sources:

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. “Lamanite Identity.” Accessed March 2, 2022.

North Ogden City. “About North Ogden.” Accessed February 18, 2022.

Parry, Darren. The Bear River Massacre: A Shoshone History. Salt Lake City, UT: Common Consent Press, 2019.

Roberts, Richard, and Richard W. Sadler. A History of Weber County. Salt Lake City, UT: Utah State Historical Society, 1997.

[1] Richard C. Roberts, and Richard W. Sadler, A History of Weber County (Salt Lake City, UT: Utah State Historical Society, 1997), 396.  

[2] “About North Ogden,” North Ogden City, accessed February 19, 2022,

[3] Darren Parry, The Bear River Massacre: A Shoshone History (Salt Lake City, UT: Common Consent Press, 2019), 12.

[4] Parry, Bear River Massacre, 13.

[5] “About North Ogden,” North Ogden City, accessed February 19, 2022,

[6] Ibid, About North Ogden.

[7] Parry, Bear River Massacre, 28-29.

[8] “Lamanite Identity,” The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, accessed February 27, 2022,

Pinhook Draw Fight

Published / by Aubrie Strasters / Leave a Comment
Picture By: Aubrie Strasters

write-up by Aubrie Strasters

Placed by: The National Register of Historic Places, Division of State History; Department of Agriculture, Forest Service; Grand County and the Moab Lions Club  

GPS Coordinates: 38° 33′ 58.95″ N, 109° 18′ 15.91″ W   

Photo Taken By: Aubrie Strasters

Photo Taken By: Aubrie Strasters

Historical Marker Text (1):  

Photo of Marker Taken by: Aubrie Strasters


The Pinhook Battleground Site on Manti-La Sal National Forest encompasses an 80-acre area and features a 20-foot square plot, which is the location of the common grave of eight men who were killed in the Pinhook confrontation. The Pinhook Battle, one of the largest and bloodiest battles between Anglo Americans and American Indians to occur in southeastern Utah, took place in 1881. The fight resulted in the death of eight Colorado posse members, two Moab cattlemen, and an unknown number of American Indians. The dispute was fueled by competition over the land and resources of southeastern Utah and southwestern Colorado. The National Register nomination and early commemoration efforts of the site were undertaken by the Moab Lions Club.

Marker placed in 2010

Historical Marker Text (2):

Photo of Marker Taken By: Aubrie Strasters

Left Side:


Photo of Marker Taken By: Aubrie Strasters

This is scared ground. It is the last resting place of eight people killed during one of the bloodiest battles to occur between settlers and American Indians in the Four Corners area. At least five others lost their lives in the fight.

For Centuries, Utes, Paiutes, Navajos and their ancestors had depended on the land. They gathered plants for food and medicines, drank the water, and hunted the wildlife. The mountains were places of safety and spiritual power.

Settlers began arriving in the area during the 1870s. At first the two groups cooperated, but as more cowboys and miners arrived, competition for land and resources escalated. By 1881, little remained of Ute land in Colorado. Large cattle herds in Colorado and Utah threatened to destroy the water sources, land and wildlife essential to the Ute way of life.

Hostility grew out of competition. In May 1881, emotions reached a boiling point. The Utes and Paiutes were stealing and killing livestock in retaliation for losing their lands. Colorado settlers called for an Indian War that would force all Utes out of the state. At a cabin near Delores, Colorado, ranchers confronted Utes traveling with allegedly stolen livestock. Two posses tracked the group for over a month.

Photo of Marker Taken By: Aubrie Strasters

The fight began the morning of June 15, when 36 posse members caught up to the Indians three miles south of here near Warner Lake. The chaotic battle ended here in Pinhook Draw, where most of the Anglo causalities occurred.  By the following day 10 Anglos and three Indians were found dead. This included two Moab cowboys who were in the area herding cattle. If more Indians died, their bodies were retrieved by their comrades and buried elsewhere.  

In the end, Colorado Utes were forced onto reservations in southwestern Colorado and northeastern Utah. Utes in southeastern Utah were able to avoid being moved onto reservations and their descendants now live at White Mesa, South of Blanding.

Left side:

            The Ute and Paiute band included 90 men, women, children, and hundreds of heads of livestock. Did they intentionally lead the posses to this place, where they could have an advantage in battle? Look around you. Imagine the Ute warriors on the hillside before you. What do you think?

Photo of Marker Taken By: Aubrie Strasters

The monument directly in front of you lists the names of the men buried here. It was originally dedicated Nov. 11, 1940 by Grand County and members of the Moab Lions Club. In 1998, the Lions Club had the site listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Historical Marker Text (3):

Photo of Marker Taken By: Aubrie Strasters




JUNE 15 1881







Extended Research:

            The La Sal mountains, known by the Navajos as Dził ‘Ashdlaii which translates to “Five Peaks,” have been a source of natural resources since the first humans arrived in the desert landscape that Grand County is known for. Among the red rock landscape sits a mountain range that has provided the water, wild life, vegetation and minerals needed to sustain cultures dating back to the Paleo-Americans, which is believed to be the first culture to call these mountains home.[1] Mormon missionaries arrived in 1855 and failed to colonize indigenous land due to tribal claims on the land. After finding mineral wealth in the mountains and decades of the government reducing native claims on their lands, the area saw its first permanent settlements of Ethno-European peoples in the 1870s.[2] These settlers consisted of farmers, cattlemen, miners and Mormon homesteaders.[3]

Though at first the newcomers and the indigenous inhabitants seemed to be able to share the resources that the mountains offered, more settlers followed which put strains on the area’s resources. Cattlemen drove off wildlife. Ranchers and farmers diverted and polluted water for increased land use. Subsequent settlers further encroached on indigenous territory.[4] Their impact on the natural resources became a problem for Ute and Paiute peoples as those societies had relied on the land for generations to supply them with all of life’s necessities. The encroachment disrespected sacred and culturally significant sites for those indigenous nations.[5]

In response, the Native peoples tried several tactics designed to drive the settlers away. They destroyed fences and cabins. They killed, stole or mutilated livestock and horses. They made threats towards the settlers and in some incidences fired at them.[6] White settlers demanded retribution on the Native peoples. They called for war against the tribes seeing it as a duty to their god to use the land for “progress” in the spirit of Manifest Destiny.[7] Where the settlers saw progress, the indigenous people saw destruction of their way of life.  

The story to the lead up of the Pinhook Draw fight is disputed. There was an incident at the cabin of John Thurman near present day Dove Creek on May 1, 1881, and by the end of the skirmish two men and two horses were dead. The men were Dick May, who was at the cabin to buy horses, and John Thurman, whose body was discovered a half a mile from the cabin. Historians debate the reasons for this fight and who discovered the scene, which could have been a prospector, a cowboy, or a member of the Navajo Nation. According to the white settlers, the dispute started a few days prior when Utes who were involved at the dispute at the cabin were caught trying to steal Thurman’s cattle and were beaten by Thurman and sent away. They returned to the cabin that day in order to exact revenge on the person who had beat them.[8] The Utes’ account came from an interrogation which Indian Agents conducted in the aftermath of the Pinhook Draw fight. It stated that they had met May at the cabin where after answering the door, May threw one of the Utes to the ground and walked over to their horses and shot two of them. The Utes claimed they killed the two men out of anger after May’s actions.[9]

Photo Taken By: Aubrie Strasters

Whichever story is true, this incident is one of many believed by the white settlers to have been perpetrated by this band of Utes. In response, after several other ranchers reported having their livestock stolen and cabins raided, the settlers decided to form a posse to track down and exterminate the Ute band. The initial posse was formed in mid-May and consisted of 12 men, but once they found out how large the band of Utes was, they went back and reenforced their numbers to 25. At the same time another posse, from the mining town of Rico, formed with the goal to recover stolen property, but really their intent was to “fight Indians.”[10] The two posses combined for a force of about 65 men and left to attack the Ute band. By June 15, their numbers had dwindled to under 35 men due to disagreements between the members of the group but this was the first contact with the Ute’s herd. The Ute band had made camp near Warner Lake in the La Sal Mountains and spotted the approaching cowboys. The men from the 90 person Ute band began to prepare for battle and the women prepared to flee with the children.[11]

The posse chased the tribal members through the camp near Warner Lake and for a few miles afterward until they hit Mason Spring. The posse’s leader, Bill Dawson, sent six men ahead to scout out the Ute position. Jordan Bean was among the six and in a later interview he stated the instructions that Dawson gave them was to “overtake the Indians and make a stand on them, and that he would bring the rest as fast as possible.”[12] The Utes led the men into the start of Castle Valley where there are steep cliffs on both sides, giving the Ute fighters the high ground.

Photo Taken By: Aubrie Strasters

The Ute men began to open fire on the posse members below who sought shelter and returned fire. Though the remaining posse was only 150 yards from the fight the majority of them did not join their comrades. Jordan Bean was wounded, knocked unconscious and left on the battleground. When he came to, he made his way to a spring where he found part of the posse moving back onto the battleground the next morning. They took him back to camp to recover where he learned that 9 men were missing. The posse returned for a second day of fighting which ended with a total of ten posse members and two Utes left dead on the battlefield over the two days of fighting. Though the number of Utes who died in the battle and the skirmishes leading up to the event is disputed, it is estimated to have been around 20 indigenous deaths.

Photo Taken By: Aubrie Strasters

The Pinhook Draw Fight has been said to be one of the “largest and most tragic Indian-White confrontation ever in terms of numbers killed,” which may be true for the region.[13] However, over the course of western settlement a significant number of lives have been taken over the ideas of who has a right to use the land and the manner of use that qualifies as correct.[14] The multiple stories of the Pinhook Draw Massacre reflect differing conceptions of land, use, ownership, and access. By colonizing and engaging in violence, the Pinhook Draw Massacre reflects the historical and cultural distance between the La Sal mountains and Dził ‘Ashdlaii.

For Further Reference:

  1. Firmage, Richard A., and Utah State Historical Society. A History of Grand County. Utah Centennial County History Series. 1996.
  2. McPherson, Robert S. “Indians, Anglos, and Ungulates: Resource Competition on the San Juan.” In Northern Navajo Frontier 1860 1900, 51–62. University Press of Colorado, 2001.
  3. Rusty Salmon, Robert McPherson, “Cowboys, Indians, and Conflict: The Pinhook Draw Fight, 1881” Utah Historical Quarterly Vol. 69, 2001, No. 1, 4-28
  4. Tanner, Faun McConkie. The Far Country: A Regional History of Moab and La Sal, Utah. 1976.
  5. Utah Daughters of the Pioneers. “Grand Memories.” 1972.

[1] Rusty Salmon, Robert McPherson, “Cowboys, Indians, and Conflict: The Pinhook Draw Fight, 1881” Utah Historical Quarterly Vol. 69, 2001, No. 1, 4-28

[2] Firmage, Richard A., and Utah State Historical Society. A History of Grand County. Utah Centennial County History Series. 1996

[3] “History: Grand County, UT – Official Website,” History | Grand County, UT – Official Website, 2022,

[4] Salmon, McPherson, “Cowboys, Indians, and Conflict,” 4-28.

[5] McPherson, Robert S. “Indians, Anglos, and Ungulates: Resource Competition on the San Juan.” In Northern Navajo Frontier 1860 1900, 51–62. University Press of Colorado, 2001.

[6] Salmon, McPherson, “Cowboys, Indians, and Conflict,” 4-28.

[7] Dolores News, May 22, 1880.

[8] Salmon, McPherson, “Cowboys, Indians, and Conflict,” 4-28.

[9] Agent W. H. Berry to Commissioner of Indian Affairs, July 18, 1881, Special Collections, Marriott Library, University of Utah, Salt Lake City

[10] Salmon, McPherson, “Cowboys, Indians, and Conflict,” 4-28.

[11] Dolores News, June 16, 1883.

[12] Jordan Bean, “Jordan Beans Story and the Castle Valley Indian Fight,” Colorado Magazine 20 (1943): 19;

[13] Kathy Jordan, “Deadly Confrontation in Utah Took Place Shortly before GJ Incorporated,” Historic 7th Street, n.d.,

[14] William Cronon, Changes in the Land: Indians, Colonists, and the Ecology of New England (New York, NY: Hill and Wang, 2003).

Black Hawk: Ute Indian Chief

Published / by Jennifer Talkington / 2 Comments on Black Hawk: Ute Indian Chief

Write up by: Jennifer Talkington

Placed By: Utah Department of Transportation (UDOT)

GPS Coordinates: 40 0’16” N 111 44’48” W

Historical Marker Text Transcript: “BLACK HAWK – UTE INDIAN CHIEF When the Ute Indian Chief, Black Hawk, died on September 27, 1870 near Spring Lake and was buried by his tribe in a nearby ravine, there was laid to rest a man designated by Brigham Young as “The most formidable foe amongst the Redman” that the pioneers had encountered in many years. These words were prompted by the memory of Chief Black Hawk’s part in Utah’s worst Indian war which ended in 1867. The war commenced in April 1865 at Manti, Sanpete County. Three years later, when the Indians were finally brought to terms, 51 settlers had been killed and 25 settlements abandoned in 5 counties. The seriousness of the Indian depredations was such that during the three-year war, over 4,700 men of the Territorial Militia were called into service. Expenses incurred during the war were in excess of one and one half million dollars. Although scattered Indian raids continued into the summer of 1868, the Black Hawk War was regarded as officially closed in 1867.”

Historical Marker in Spring Lake Photo by: Jennifer Talkington
Close up of the emblem on the Historical Marker. Photo by Jennifer Talkington

Extended Research:

The Black Hawk War was fought between the Ute Indians and the Mormon settlers in central and southern Utah between 1865 and 1872. Tensions between the groups had been building since the Mormon settlers arrived in the Salt Lake Valley in 1847 due to struggles over resources. The Mormon settlers chose the best land to settle, took productive fisheries such as Utah Lake, took timber, drove game away and diverted critical water sources for irrigating crops, leaving the Native people of Utah destitute and starving.[1] After almost twenty years of living together in relative peace, tensions became too much. No one single event sparked the war, as many skirmishes were happening on a small scale all around central and southern Utah. However, many historians suggest that a disagreement between two men boiled over into warfare in April of 1865.[2] A young Ute man named Jake Arapeen rode into Manti with Black Hawk and met up with John Lowry, a Mormon settler and employee of the United States Indian Office, to discuss the tensions. The discussion led to a heated argument between the two men. In anger, John Lowry pulled Jake Arapeen off his horse by his hair and they fought on the ground. Seeing this as the lowest of insults, Jake Arapeen and Black Hawk rode off together and that day decided an all-out war against the Mormons was the only option.[3]

The fiercest of the fighting took place between 1865 and 1867. Both sides were perpetrators during this war and sadly most of the victims were innocent of depredations. The Circleville Massacre of April 1866 was one such horrible event to come out of the Black Hawk War. A friendly group of Paiute Indians were camped near Circleville when a church order came down to disarm the Indians. The Mormon settlers were interested in self-preservation and so decided to round up the Paiutes and put them in a meeting house under security. Two Paiutes managed to break free and were shot as they were getting away. Paranoia got the best of the settlers and they decided they should kill the twenty-four remaining Paiutes.[4]  Brigham Young was disgusted by the murders and “later said that the curse of God rested upon the Circle Valley and its inhabitants because of it.”[5]

Also in 1866, the Ute’s raided horses and cattle from Scipio and the surrounding area totaling 350 head of cattle, a huge loss for Mormon settlers. As the settlers tried to regain their cattle, the Battle of Gravelly Ford began. The Mormons and the Utes exchanged gunfire, killing a 14-year-old Mormon boy and James Russell Ivie. During the battle, Black Hawk was shot in the stomach, but the Ute’s managed to escape.

In 1867, Black Hawk was sick from an infection caused by the bullet wound he received in the Battle of Gravelly Ford. He saw that his people could not win the war as the Mormon population kept increasing. Black Hawk decided he would go on a campaign of peace. He personally visited many Mormon villages he had raided to apologize for the pain he and his warriors caused. He was laid to rest on September 27, 1870 in the same place as his birth: Spring Lake Utah.[6]

Spring Lake in January. The place that Black Hawk was born and where he was buried. Photo by Jennifer Talkington

The death of Black Hawk did not bring an end to this war. The Ute people were starving, their population decimated through disease and loss of game. Periodic raids to avoid starvation continued by the Utes until 1872.[7] It was in 1872 that the federal troops took control of the area as the Nauvoo Legion was dismantled. The federal troops strictly forced the Utes to remain on the Uintah Reservation. Once the Mormon settlers were free from raids, they were able to go back to previously abandoned settlements. They also used Chief Black Hawk’s raiding trails to expand their territory even further.[8] This historical marker is in need of an update, as we now know that the number of settlers killed was at least 70.[9] It is thought that at least 140 Native Americans died during this conflict, likely more. The result of the war for the Utes was a move to the Uintah Reservation, giving up their traditional lifestyle for a life of dependency on the United States Government.  The result of the war for the Mormon settlers was the unimpeded colonization of Utah Territory, leading the way to statehood in 1896.[10]

[1] Gottfredson, Peter, ed. (1919). History of Indian Depredations in Utah. (Salt Lake City: Fenestra Books,2002), 20-22.

[2] Peterson, John Alton. Utah’s Black Hawk War. (Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 1998), 16.

[3] Peterson, Black Hawk, 17.

[4] Jones, Sondra. Being and Becoming Ute: The Story of an American Indian People. (Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 2019), 166.

[5] Wells, Quentin Thomas Wells. Defender: The Life of Daniel H. Wells. (Boulder: Utah State University Press, 2016), 280.

[6] Gottfredson, Depredations, 227.

[7] Jones, Becoming Ute, 172.

[8] Petersen, Black Hawk, 396.

[9] Peterson, Black Hawk,  2.

[10] May, Dean. Utah: A People’s History. (Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 1987).

For Further Reference:

Primary Sources:

Gottfredson, Peter, ed. (1919). History of Indian Depredations in Utah. Salt Lake City, Utah: Fenestra Books.

Secondary Sources:

May, Dean. Utah: A People’s History. (Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 1987).

Jones, Sondra. Being and Becoming Ute: The Story of an American Indian People. Salt Lake City, Utah: University of Utah Press, 2019.

Peterson, John Alton. Utah’s Black Hawk War. Salt Lake City, Utah: University of Utah Press, 1998.

Wells, Quentin Thomas Wells. Defender: The Life of Daniel H. Wells. Boulder, Colorado: Utah State University Press, 2016.

Spring City

Published / by Jessica Guynn / 1 Comment on Spring City

Write-up by Jessica Guynn

Placed by: Daughters of the Utah Pioneers, No. 158

GPS Coordinates:  39.4794986, -111.4965053

Historical Marker Text:

This spring was long used by Indians and early scouts as a camp site. James Allred, directed by Brigham Young, on March 22, 1852, led his sons and their families here to build their homes. In 1853 a large colony of Scandinavian immigrants joined them. The waters of canal creek and natural springs supplied the settlers twice. The Indians drove them out burning their fort and all their possessions; but in 1859, they returned to establish permanently the town of Spring City. Canal Creek Camp. San Pete County.

Extended Research:

In 1980 the U.S. government designated the entire town of Spring City as a National Historic District for its significance as an example of Mormon settlement patterns and for its well-preserved construction using geologically unique, Sanpete oolite limestone. [1]

After crossing the plains to Utah from Missouri in 1847, James Allred was assigned by the Latter-Day Saint Prophet, Brigham Young, to leave the Salt Lake Valley with his extended family in 1852 and settle an area to the Southeast known by the Mormons as Sanpete County.

Allred’s journal recorded, “I remained in Manti City, Sanpete Co. until the Spring of 1852, when according to the council of President Young, father and I moved 16 miles north and started a new settlement. [2]

Allred patterned his frontier village after the architectural plan created by Church founder Joseph Smith to build Zion, the ideal city. The template called for wide streets dividing symmetrical blocks of five acres. Center lots provided space for religious structures and businesses, while surrounding blocks accommodated individual acre lots for homes.[3]

Likewise, survey maps for Spring City display a grid of streets dividing the land into analogous squares, thus imprinting urban order onto the wilderness. [4] The plat called for private residences to be constructed of brick or stone and set back from the street to allow for both a front yard and garden behind.

Farmers utilized open space outside the village for their crops, allowing inhabitants to live centrally rather than spread themselves as distant neighbors among their fields.

Villagers eventually called Allred’s eponymous settlement Spring City after a natural effusion of cold, clear water at its center. It was one of nearly 500 communities across the West to imitate Smith’s original design, thus shaping the nascent urban landscape in the Great Basin and California. [5]

However, Mormon pioneers were not the first to claim the Sanpete valley as their home. The Ute tribe had inhabited the land for hundreds of years, migrating from the south perhaps as early as 1000 CE and establishing settlements throughout the Great Basin. [6] Ute Chief Wakara, who had grown rich from trade with trappers and Spanish colonists in New Mexico, initially viewed the pioneers as trading partners and allowed them to settle the Ute tribal hunting grounds east of the Wasatch mountains. However, tensions between villagers and tribespeople grew when Mormons sought to regulate Ute raids and sales of livestock and captives that had become their currency. [7]

Isolated acts of theft and violence increasingly led to open hostilities that culminated in the Walker War and the destruction of the entire town of Spring City by fire in 1854. [8] Settlers fled to nearby Fort Manti and didn’t return until 1859 after the withdrawal of federal troops from the Utah War (1857-58) between Mormon settlers and the U.S. government over territorial sovereignty. [9]

A large group of newly arrived Danish converts, many of whom were skilled stonemasons, joined the original villagers in reestablishing and rebuilding Spring City. Their chief material was a geologically unique Sanpete oolite limestone found in nearby outcroppings. Abundant and easily accessible, craftsmen prized the stone for its creamy hue and pliability. Oolite was the principal element of both public and private structures that began to fill the town. Stonemasons crafted churches, homes and civic buildings.

Perhaps most notable is the Spring City LDS Chapel for its intricate oolite brickwork.[10] Many of these structures still stand as monuments to pioneer industry and resilience.

[1[ “The Founding of Spring City” (accessed: February 21, 2020)

[2] Allred, James Tillman Sanford. Diary. (1825-1905).

[3] “Plat of the City of Zion, circa Early June–25 June 1833,” p. [1], The Joseph Smith Papers, accessed April 1, 2020,

[4] Burr, David H. “Survey Maps.” N.P, 1857. Daughters of the Utah Pioneers Museum, Spring City, UT.

[5] Provost, Claire. “Building Zion: the controversial plan for a Mormon-inspired city in Vermont,” The, (accessed: February 20, 2020)

[6] Wimmer, Ryan Elwood, “The Walker War Reconsidered” (2010). All Theses and Dissertations. (accessed: April 1, 2020). P. 21

[7] Ibid, 53

[8] Antrei, Albert C.T. and Roberts, Allen D. Utah Centennial County History Series – Sanpete County. Utah State Historical Society and Sanpete County Commission, 1999. P. 71 

[9] Poll, Richard D. and MacKinnon, William P. “Causes of the Utah War Reconsidered”  Journal of Mormon History, Vol 20 (Fall 1994): P. 17

[10] Parry, William T. “A majestic Building Stone: Sanpete Oolite Limestone,” Utah Historical Quarterly, Vol 81 (Winter 2013): P. 55

Pioneers of Antimony

Published / by Eric Montague / 13 Comments on Pioneers of Antimony

Pioneers of Antimony

Write-up: Eric Cecil Montague

Placed By: Daughters of Utah Pioneers Forrest Camp · · · Garfield County (1949)

G.P.S. Coordinates: 38° 6.907′ N, 111° 59.8′ W

Historical Marker Text:

In 1873, Albert Guiser and others located in a fertile meadow, which they named Grass Valley. Surveyors camped on a stream, lassoed a young coyote and called the place Coyote Creek. The first L.D.S. settlers were Isaac Riddle and family, who took up land on the east fork of the Sevier River. Later, a school house was built, and the Marion Ward organized with Culbert King as bishop. In 1920 the name was officially changed to Antimony after the antimony mines east of the valley.

A picture on the day of the dedication of the marker with Antimony townswomen – Amber Riddle and Maude Wiley on the left and Esther Mathews and Ethel Savage on the right. (Courtesy of the Mayor’s Office – Antimony, Utah)

Extended Research:

The history of Antimony is a story of diverse groups making a home in a beautiful valley. Much like the story of Utah at large, these groups consisted of Native Americans, early settlers from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (L.D.S.), and miners. The fertile valley of Antimony has been known by several names over the years: Clover Flat[1], Grass Valley[2], Coyote[3], and after 1920, Antimony. The latest name was chosen because of the abundant antimony mines in the canyons that surround Antimony and the mining industry that the mineral supported. This valley is covered in lush grass that is naturally irrigated by Otter Creek and the East Fork of the Sevier River.

The primary native people of the valley were Southern Paiute Native Americans. Previously, approximately 10,000 years ago, early native peoples, including the Fremont and Ancestral Puebloan peoples, inhabited Southern Utah.[4] Twenty-seven miles south of Antimony, at the ranch of Jeff Rex, archaeologists found ruins known as the North Creek Shelter Site. These ruins provide insight into the lives of the native peoples that inhabited the area before European settlement. The site, used as temporary shelter by many generations of hunters and travelers, contains artifacts from the Paiutes and earlier native peoples. Artifacts found at North Creek include stone tools, farming equipment, projectiles for hunting, pottery, and other common native objects.[5] The item from the North Creek site that received the most acclaim was a wild potato; this is the earliest documented use of potatoes in North America.[6]

North Creek Shelter Site

The more recent peoples of the region are linguistic relatives of the Utes, known as the Kaiparowits Band of the Southern Paiute.[7] Shoshone bands also occupied the area. Both groups used the substance now known as antimony (a very brittle, bluish-white metallic substance),[8] which they extracted from the canyons around Grass Valley,[9] for tools and weaponry. This Southern Paiute band engaged with Europeans (Mormon settlers and the U.S. Army) during the Black Hawk War (1865–1872), and Europeans settled permanently in the region shortly thereafter. The small Southern Pauite band that lived in Grass Valley called themselves the Paw Goosawd Uhmpuhtseng or Water Clover People.[10]

The earliest Anglo-European contact with the region occurred as a result of the Spanish Trail and the John C. Fremont explorations. A trading path off the Old Spanish Trail called the Gunnison trail was used during the 1830s and 1840s. The trail split at the summit of Salt Creek in Salina Canyon. From there, the path passed through Seven Mile Canyon and Fish Lake, descended along Otter Creek, and continued along the Sevier to the Pahvant Mountains.[11] Trading caravans used this path to supply two economies: goods and slaves. The most prominent trade goods were furs, buckskin, and dried buffalo meat. In addition, the Ute people sold captured Southern Paiutes as slaves to the Spanish traders.[12] Later, in the winter of 1853–1854, Captain John C. Fremont made his fifth and final expedition to the Western territories. During this expedition, Fremont encountered harsh weather and searched for safety. After a long trip through the San Rafael Swell, Capitol Reef, and the Awapa Plateau, Fremont and his group followed Otter Creek into Grass Valley, and there found shelter and recuperated.[13] The party later continued to Parowan for further recovery. In a letter to his sister about his trials, Fremont wrote that “the Mormons saved me and mine from death and starvation.”[14]

During the Black Hawk War, Mormon settler Captain James Andrus received orders from Brigadier General Erastus Snow to conduct a reconnaissance mission throughout Southern Utah to ascertain the strength of Native American communities in the region. This group passed through Grass Valley on September 4, 1866. In Grass Valley, the soldiers found the most “extensive” defense works they had ever encountered, erected by the Southern Paiutes.[15]

Brigham Young, then president of the L.D.S. Church, organized the first Mormon exploration party into Grass Valley in 1873, following the end of the Black Hawk War. The group included Albert K. Therber, William Jex, Abraham Holladay, General William Pace, George Bean, and George Evans. Throughout Southern Utah, Chief Tabiona of the Shoshone tribe served as their guide. During their exploration of Southern Utah, on June 18, 1873, they camped at what is known today as Antimony Bench. That evening, they recorded in their journal that “We were just going to camp for the night when we saw an old coyote with three young ones. We gave chase and caught the little ones, cut their ears off short, tied a paper collar around one’s neck and turned them loose. We named the stream Coyote.”[16] Thus, Grass Valley was renamed Coyote.

In 1873, the first European settler arrived in the valley: Albert Guiser. Guiser and his family owned mines in Oregon, namely the Bonanza, the Brazos, the Pyx, and the Worley mines. He likely came to Utah as a mining speculator because of the propaganda surrounding Utah during the national mining fervor and its promised mineral riches. Guiser established a cattle operation in the valley as well, yet did not establish a permanent settlement or buildings in Coyote, only visiting during summer.[17]

To understand the account of Antimony’s first permanent settlers, one must be acquainted with the practice by the adherents of the Mormon faith known as the United Order. The United Order, established by Brigham Young, was an economic concept based on cooperative and communitarian ideals. In the Order, all property was held in common, whereby its participants’ goal was to become self-sufficient from the external world. Most United Order communities only lasted a few years before dissolving.[18] Two Order communities that had lasting effects on Antimony were Kingston and Circleville. John Rice King, son of the leader of the Order in Kingston, purchased the Antimony Guiser cattle operation as part of the Order.[19] Two prominent future leaders of Antimony came from United Order communities: Isaac Riddle and Culbert King, from Kingston and Circleville, respectively. Riddle used Grass Valley to graze the Order’s cooperative beef herd. The Order from Kingston built a dairy beside Riddle’s ranch in Antimony.[20] After the dissolution of the Order in 1878, Isaac, Culbert, and others came to Grass Valley.

Isaac Riddle was the first permanent settler in Coyote. Riddle was born in Boone County, Kentucky, where his family converted to the Mormon faith and moved to Nauvoo, Illinois. He enjoyed his time making shingles for the Nauvoo temple. Riddle spoke of the challenges that he encountered from the “mobbers of Illinois,” who persecuted the Mormons. He also described the troubles of 1844 that the Mormons encountered in Nauvoo at the murder of the founder of Mormonism, Joseph Smith. Notably, he wrote a description of Smith’s death, stating that “he cannot tell how we felt.” For the next six years, while migrating to Utah, Riddle endured numerous trials. His three-year journey to Winter Quarters in Omaha resulted in his “destitute condition.” To add further challenges, Riddle’s father left him in charge of the family in Omaha for two years when he was only 17 years old. After his arrival in Utah, Brigham Young called on Riddle and Jacob Hamblin to go on a mission to Southern Utah to improve relations with the native people.[21] Riddle’s exploration of Utah resulted in his acquisition of a vast estate throughout Southern Utah. In 1875, Riddle and his son, Isaac Jr., built ranches on the east fork of the Sevier River in Grass Valley.[22] Isaac and his son had explored the area the year before and assessed it to be perfect for cattle because of its abundant water and natural meadows. In addition to Riddle, John Hunt, Joseph Hunt, Gideon Murdock, and Walter Hyatt all used Antimony for cattle grazing.[23] Riddle was a shrewd businessman. To this end, he allotted a part of his ranches as a stopover for travelers on their way to Hole-In-The-Rock.[24] Riddle’s financial interests not only included ranches, but he also established many grist mills and sawmills throughout the region. After the dissolution of the United Order, Riddle owned thousands of cattle, sheep, and horses. He was also a polygamist with multiple wives, which resulted in his incarceration, along with George Q. Cannon, an apostle of the L.D.S. Church, from September 1887 to February 1888 for polygamy under the Edmunds Tucker Act. Riddle died on September 1, 1906.

Isaac Riddle

Isaac Riddle in Prison for Polygamy with George Q. Cannon (L.D.S. Apostle) Riddle is the in the second row, first person on left side

In 1878, around the Riddle Ranch, the town of Antimony began when thirty-three Mormon families—some of whom were friends of the Riddles—moved into the valley. The most noteworthy among the settlers were the Eliza Esther McCullough, Elizabeth Ann Callister, Sarah Elizabeth Pratt, Lydia Ann Webb, and Culbert King families; the Eliza Syrett and Volney King family; the Helen Maria Webb and John King family; the Mary Theodocia Savage and John Dingman Wilcox family; the Esther Clarinda King and George Black family; the Polly Ann Ross and Culbert Levi King family; the Christina Brown and Mortimer W. Warner family; the Charles E. Rowen family; the Knute Peterson family; the Peter Neilson family; and the James Huff family.[25]

Antimony Post Office 1896

Of the first settlers in Antimony, one prominent member of the community, Culbert King, became the spiritual leader of the early Mormon settlers. King was born on January 31, 1836, in the state of New York. His parents joined the L.D.S. Church and moved to Illinois. In Nauvoo, the King family became acquainted with the religious leader, Joseph Smith. Following Smith’s murder they joined the migration of the Saints in 1846, arriving in Utah in 1851. Shortly after their arrival, Brigham Young sent the Kings to Fillmore, Millard County, where they erected the first house in the area. King served as a soldier during both the Walker and Black Hawk wars. Afterward, he became a friend to the Southern Paiutes and became somewhat proficient in speaking their language. After staying for 15 years in Kanosh, he moved to Circleville, Piute County, where he lived in the United Order for several years and served as a member of the ecclesiastical leadership there until the Order dissolved. He then relocated to Grass Valley and, in 1882, became bishop of the L.D.S. ward. From December 1885 to June 1886, he was imprisoned for polygamy. He continued to serve as bishop until 1901 when he was released and ordained a patriarch by Apostle Francis M. Lyman. He died on October 29, 1909. He and his wives were all buried in Antimony.[26]

Culbert King

Culbert King with Primary Assocation

The most prominent non-Mormon settler and early miner in Antimony was Archibald Munchie Hunter. After emigrating from Scotland to the United States through Boston in 1851, Hunter’s career took him across the nation. In 1874, he arrived in Utah and resided in Sevier County as a breeder of thoroughbred racehorses. In 1879, he joined the settlers in Antimony. That he felt at home in Antimony is no surprise, given the communitarian beliefs of the town founders and Hunter’s prominence as a socialist. He spent the rest of his life there, supporting himself by providing supplies to various mining speculations, running a hotel, and raising and exporting his horses to Scotland. The successful mining efforts of Hunter and others gave the town its current name—Antimony—after the mineral that he and others mined in the canyons above the town. When he moved to Antimony in 1879, Hunter became chairman of the school board, and residents who experienced financial difficulties testified to Hunter’s generosity. Hunter cared for his sister, Jane Talbot, and her five children in his home, which he also ran as a hotel. He died in Antimony in 1931 and was buried in Salt Lake City.[27]

Archibald M. Hunter

Archibald Hunter with Family in front of his hotel

Archibald, as a school board trustee and benefactor, is significant to another group of Antimony pioneers: its earliest women. Female pioneers in Antimony influenced the town substantially, most notably as teachers and nurses. Carrie Henry, Lydia Tebbs Winters, and Esther Clarinda Black were the first teachers in Coyote. In 1882, at the home of George Black, the first schoolhouse was built, and in 1885, the school found its more permanent residence in the newly built church, until a dedicated school building was built in 1916. The school’s most remembered teacher was Esther Clarinda Black. One of her students, Lillian McGillvra Abbott, remembered her as having a “pleasant disposition.”[28] Black’s daughter, Esther Black Matthews, revered her mother. She recalled that Black began to teach out of necessity to provide for her family while her husband, George Black, served a mission for the L.D.S. Church in England.[29] Black’s impact on the community cannot be understated due to her effect on the town’s children. Black served for 23 years as the town leader of the youth organization of the L.D.S. Church, named the Primary Association, thus influencing the education and spiritual lives of the town’s children.[30]

Lydia Tebbs Winters with Antimony School Children

In addition to teaching, Esther was also a midwife. Midwifery and nursing were vital to the health of the young town. The first baby born in Antimony was Forrest King, son of John R. and Helen King, on April 1, 1879.[31] Some of the most esteemed nurses were Catherine Wilcox Webb and her two daughters, Helen Matilda Webb King and Lydia Webb Huntley,[32] among whom Catherine’s history is remarkable. Her first husband was Eber Wilcox, a member of Zion’s Camp, a Mormon militia organized by Joseph Smith to reclaim property stolen from members of the faith by Missourians. Wilcox died of cholera while on the Zion’s Camp expedition at Fishing River.[33] Joseph Smith officiated over Catherine’s marriage to her second husband, John Webb, in Kirtland, Ohio.[34] Catherine and her family came to Utah as original overland pioneers with the James Pace Company in 1850[35] and settled in Fillmore. After Catherine’s husband was killed guarding the fort at Fillmore during the Black Hawk War,[36] she joined her children in Coyote. She and her daughters were excellent nurses. Upon Catherine’s death, her obituary said of her that “her sphere of usefulness was unbounded as she assisted at the birth of many and at the bedside of the sick. She knew her profession well and was extensively known and well-beloved by all her acquaintances.”[37]

Catherine Wilcox Webb

From its humble pioneer beginnings, the town now known as Antimony made its mark on the Utah history in both the 19th and 20th centuries. The infamous Butch Cassidy and his group of criminal outlaws often frequented the area when it was known as Coyote and one-time marshal George Black encountered the gang there.[38] The telephone line arrived in Antimony in 1912, permanently connecting the town to the outside world.[39] That same decade, Antimony contributed in two ways to World War I. First, it sent eight of its young men to serve: Alonzo Black, Nelo Brindley, Loril Carpenter, Glen Crabb, Wilford Davis, Gus Lambson, David Nicholes, and Arnold Smoot. All eight returned home with honorable discharges. In addition to its soldiers, two antimony mines shipped ore to ammunition plants as part of the war effort. Following the war, the global influenza pandemic claimed four of Antimony’s residents: George Jolley, Arella Smoot, Thomas Ricketts, and Nephi Black.[40]

The official incorporation of Antimony as a town occurred in 1934, during the peak of its population. The 1880 census counted the town’s population as 125, and it rose in the 1920s and 1930s to its all-time peak of 290. It then precipitously declined until it began to rise again in 2000 and is just over 130 today. In 1938, The Works Progress Administration of the New Deal brought culinary water to Antimony.[41] Its population decline over the 20th century is a result of the difficulties of farming and mining in the region. The antimony mines closed after World War I. Without mining, Antimony had to rely solely on its agriculture. Antimony has always been a farming community, with the potato as its most common crop. The former importance of potato farming is demonstrated all over Antimony today in the potato cellar derelicts that dot the highway and roads throughout town.

Antimony Potato Cellar

While World War II was raging half a world away, L.D.S. Apostle Marion G. Romney spoke at the dedication of the newly built Antimony Ward chapel on April 23, 1944. In his dedicatory prayer, Romney prayed for those from Antimony and the rest of the U.S. who were serving overseas. He said, “Bless our boys and girls in the armed services who are spread out upon the earth in this great war.”[42] Antimony sent the following young men to battle in World War II: Lark Allen, Wayne Allen, Burns Black, Noel Black, Dean Crabb, Keith Crabb, Keith Gates, Robert Gates, Dahl Gleave, Marthell Gleave, George Jolley, R.J. Jolley, Arthell King, Darral King, Eugene King, Fount Lambson, Boyd Lindquist, Verl McInelly, Alton Mathews, Dasel Mathews, Gerald Mathews, Calvin Montague, Cecil Montague, Arden Nay, Clinton Nay, Harvey Nay, Merrill Nay, Guyle Riddle, Ted Riddle, James Sandberg, Lynn Savage, LaMaun Sorenson, Harmon Steed, Robert Steed, Arther Twitchell, Clarence Twitchell, Ephrium Twitchell, Grant Warner, Robert O. Warner, Warren Wildon, Carling Young, and Verl Young. All of these men returned home, except for three who were killed in action: Lark Allen, Ted Riddle, and Arther Twitchell. On Friday, May 30, 1947, the town held a service in honor of its war veterans. It was presided over by the president of the Panguitch L.D.S. Stake, Douglas Q. Cannon, and the bishop of the L.D.S. ward, Chester Allen, who had lost his son, Lark.

Antimony War Veterans Plaque – WWI & WWII

Dedicatory Services for Bronze Plaque Program Cover

Dedicatory Services for Bronze Plaque Program Inside

In 1946, electricity arrived in Antimony. The first home in which the Garkane Power Company installed its service was that of Avera and Ivan Montague.[43] Throughout the first half of the 20th century, dances were held in one of the canyons leading out of Antimony at the Purple Haze dance hall. When it opened, for 50 cents, people from towns around Antimony came to hear the live orchestra and dance late into the night as the sunset cast a purple haze over the canyon. The dance hall closed in the 1960s as the popularity of social dancing subsided.[44]

Throughout the last half of the 20th century, Antimony’s population dwindled, even dipping below 100 residents in 1990. One reason for this was the declining potato crop industry and other farming struggles.[45] Another reason was the pull factor that drew the younger generations of Antimony into larger cities. Population decline usually has a negative economic effect on rural towns. The impact of this is evident in the median income of Antimony households dropping to $22,500 in 2010, as reported by the 2010 census. However, since its lowest population point, Antimony is rebounding, largely due to its tourism and recreational significance, as the town is on the route to Bryce Canyon, a U.S. National Park. Antimony also has the advantage of being part of the American Discovery Trail, a non-motorized trail that one can use to travel across middle America. The trail is “a new breed of national trail—part city, part small town, part forest, part mountains, part desert—all in one trail. Its 6,800+ miles of continuous, multi-use trail stretches from Cape Henlopen State Park, Delaware, to Pt. Reyes National Seashore, California.”[46] Furthermore, Mayor Shannon Allen has brought popularity to Antimony with a fireworks display every Independence Day. Antimony is home to many highly popular attractions: the Antimony Mercantile, Otter Creek Reservoir, and the Rockin’ R Ranch. The “Merc” is well-known for its half-pound Antimony Burger, the Rockin’ R for its dude ranch experience, and Otter Creek for its unprecedented trout fishing. As its citizens attest, Antimony owns a special place in Utah’s history.


Primary Sources

Abbott, Lillian McGilvra. My Life Story. No Date.

Deseret News (July 1884): 16.

Garfield County News (April 1923): 6.

The Engineering and Mining Journal (1896).

The Joseph Smith Papers, Journals 1 (1832–1839).

Fremont, Capt. J. C. Report of the Exploring Expedition to the Rocky Mountains in the year 1842 and to Oregon and North California in the years 1843-44. Washington: Gales and Seaton, printers, 1845.

King, Culbert Biographical Sketch of Culbert Levi King. No Date.

Mathews, Esther Black. A Short Sketch of My Life: Daughters of the Utah Pioneers. 1947.

Riddle, Isaac. “Autobiography of Isaac Riddle.” In The Descendants of John Riddle, edited by Chauncey Cazier Riddle, 2003.

Utah Department of Heritage & Arts. “Archibald Murchie Hunter Papers.” No date.

Utah Digital Newspapers. ” Salt Lake Tribune | 1885-12-13 | The Second District Court.” No date.

Wallace, John Hankins. Wallace’s Monthly 9 (1883).

Secondary Sources


Biography of Catherine Narrowmore. Fillmore, Utah: Daughters of the Utah Pioneers. No Date.

Brown, Harlow F. Grass Valley History. Ogden: FamilySearch International, 1937.

Chidester, Ida, and Eleanor Bruhn. Golden Nuggets of Pioneer Days: A History of Garfield County. Panguitch, Utah: The Garfield County News, 1949.

Crampton, C. Gregory. “Military Reconnaissance in Southern Utah, 1866.” Utah Historical Quarterly 32, no. 2 (1866): 145–161.

Gottfredson, Peter, Indian Depredations in Utah. Salt Lake City: Press of Skelton Publishing Co., 1919.

Gunnerson, James H. The Fremont Culture: A Study in Culture Dynamics on the Northern Anasazi Frontier, Papers of the Peabody Museum, vol. 59, No. 2. Harvard University Press, Cambridge, 1920.

Janetski, Joel C., Mark L. Bodily, Bradley A. Newbold, and David T. Yoder. “Deep Human History in Escalante Valley and Southern Utah.” Utah Historical Quarterly 79, no. 3 (2001): 5–24.

Jensen, Andrew. Encyclopedic History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Salt Lake City: Press of Skelton Publishing Co., 1941.

Kelly, Isabel T. Southern Paiute Ethnography. Lake City: University of Utah Press, 1964.

Louderback, Lisbeth A., Bruce M. Pavlik “Ancient potato use in North America.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 114, no. 29 (July 2017): 201705540.

Mormon Historic. “North America & Hawaii.” No date.

Newell, Linda King, and Vivian Linford Talbot. A History of Garflied County. Salt Lake City: Utah State Historical Society, 1998.

Newell, Linda King. A History of Piute County. Salt Lake City: Utah State Historical Society, 1999.

Nielsen, Mabel Woodard, and Audrie Cuyler Ford. Johns Valley: The Way We Saw It. Springville: Art City Publishing Co., 1971.

Periodic Table of the Elements. “Antimony.”

Probasco, Christian. Highway 12 – Hoodoo Lands and the Rim Red and Bryce Canyons, the Paunsaugunt Plateau. Salt Lake City: Utah State University Press, 2005.

Reeve, W. Paul, and Ardis Parshall. Mormonism: A Historical Encyclopedia. Santa Barbara, California: ABC-CLIO, 2010.

“Catherine Webb.” Overland Travel Pioneer Database, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Warner, M. Lane. Antimony, Utah – Its History and Its People 1873-2004, 2nd ed. Provo, Utah 2004.

[1] John Hankins Wallace, Wallace’s Monthly 9 (1883): 625.

[2] Andrew Jensen, Encyclopedic History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Salt Lake City: Press of Skelton Publishing Co., 1941), 4.

[3] Lane M. Warner, Antimony, Utah – Its History and Its People 1873-2004, 2nd ed. (Provo, Utah, 2004), 5.

[4] James H. Gunnerson, The Fremont Culture: A Study in Culture Dynamics on the Northern Anasazi Frontier, Papers of the Peabody Museum, vol. 59, No. 2 (Harvard University Press, Cambridge, 1920).

[5] Joel C., Janetski et al. “Deep Human History in Escalante Valley and Southern Utah,” Utah Historical Quarterly 79, no. 3 (2001): 5–24.

[6] Lisbeth A. Louderback and Pavlik M. Bruce, “Ancient potato use in North America,” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 114, no. 29. (July 2017): 201705540.

[7] Isabel Kelly, “Southern Paiute Ethnography,” Anthropological Papers No. 69, Glen Canyon Series No. 21 (Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 1964)

[8] Periodic Table of the Elements, “Antimony,”

[9] Warner, Antimony, Utah, 4.

[10] Linda King Newell and Vivian Linford Talbot, A History of Garflied County (Salt Lake City: Utah State Historical Society, 1998), 62.

[11] Harlow F. Brown, Grass Valley History, (Ogden: FamilySearch International, 1937), 2.

[12] Newell and Talbot, A History of Garflied County, 43.

[13] Brown, Grass Valley History, 2.

[14] Capt. J. C. Fremont, Report of the Exploring Expedition to the Rocky Mountains in the year 1842 and to Oregon and North California in the years 1843-44 (Washington: Gales and Seaton, printers, 1845).

[15] Gregory C. Crampton, “Military Reconnaissance in Southern Utah, 1866,” Utah Historical Quarterly 32, no. 2 (1866): 159.

[16] Peter Gottfredson, Indian Depredations in Utah (Salt Lake City: Press of Skelton Publishing Co., 1919): 324-330.

[17] The Engineering and Mining Journal (1896): 383.

[18] W. Paul Reeve and Ardis Parshall, Mormonism: A Historical Encyclopedia (Santa Barbara, California: ABC-CLIO, 2010), 287.

[19] Newell and Talbot, A History of Garflied County, 119.

[20] Newell and Talbot, A History of Garflied County, 127.

[21] Riddle, Isaac. 2003. Autobiography of Isaac Riddle in The Descendants of John Riddle. Edited by Chauncey Cazier Riddle.

[22] Jensen, Andrew. 1941. Encyclopedic History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Deseret News. 4.

[23] Nielsen, Mabel Woodard, and Audrie Cuyler Ford. 1971. Johns Valley: The Way We Saw It. Springville, UT: Art City Publishing Co. 196.

[24] Probasco, Christian. 2005. Highway 12 – Hoodoo Lands and the Rim Red and Bryce Canyons, the Paunsaugunt Plateau. Utah State University Press. 33.

[25] Chidester, Ida, and Eleanor Bruhn. 1949. Golden Nuggets of Pioneer Days – A History of Garfield County. Panguitch, Utah: The Garfield County News. 124.

[26] Jensen, Andrew. 1941. Encyclopedic History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Deseret News. 185

[27] Archibald Murchie Hunter Papers, 1871-1933.  MSS B 68. Utah State Historical Society Archive, Salt Lake City, Utah

[28] Mathews, Esther Black. 1947. A Short Sketch of My Life: Daughters of the Utah Pioneers.

[29] Abbott, Lillian McGillvra. My Life Story

[30] Garfield County News. 1923. April 20: 6.

[31] Linda King Newell, A History of Piute County (Salt Lake City: Utah State Historical Society, 1999), 129.

[32] Newell and Talbot, A History of Garflied County, 120.


[34] The Joseph Smith Papers, Journals, vol. 1 1832-1839.


[36] Biography of Catherine Narrowmore. Fillmore, Utah: Daughters of the Utah Pioneers.

[37] Deseret News. 1884. July 30: 16.

[38] Warner, Antimony, Utah ,96.

[39] Newell and Talbot, A History of Garflied County, 222.

[40] Newell and Talbot, A History of Garflied County, 258.

[41] Newell and Talbot, A History of Garflied County, 294.

[42] Warner, Antimony, Utah, 71.

[43] Newell and Talbot, A History of Garflied County, 300.

[44] Warner, Antimony, Utah, 77.

[45] Newell and Talbot, A History of Garflied County, 337.


Antimony Mining Company Stock Certificate


Published / by Leah Kershisnik / 1 Comment on Kanosh

Write-Up by Leah Kershisnik

Placed By: Daughters of the Utah Pioneers, Sally Kanosh Camp, 1954

GPS Coordinates: 43°38’19.39″N 116°14’28.86″W

Historical Marker Text:

The town site of Kanosh selected by Brigham Young was surveyed in 1867. The first settlers were Noah Avery, William Penney, and Baldwin Watts. Upon advice from Brigham Young, families from Petersburg, Corn Creek, added strength to the new settlement. C-nos, a Pahvant Indian chief and his tribe of 400 lived in this locality, hence the name “Kanosh” was given to the place. This tithing office building, erected in 1870, was also used as a meeting house. Culbert King was the first bishop. The Latter-Day Saints Church granted use of the building to the Daughters of the Utah Pioneers in 1952

Extended Research:

In 1849 Brigham Young dispatched the Southern Expedition under LDS Apostle Parley P. Pratt to explore Southern Utah and investigate possible settlement locations. The expedition spent time in the Pahvant Valley in Southern Utah and there likely met Chief Kanosh, the young leader of the Pahvant Indians who occupied Corn Creek, named for the corn cultivated by the Indians along the creek. Pratt reported an extremely friendly reception from the Native Americans in the area, news which encouraged Brigham Young to establish settlements in Southern Utah.[1]

Chief Kanosh was born around 1828 to one of the wives of Kash-ee-bats, a Timpanogos Ute chief. Kash-ee-bats was assassinated in the early 1840s while Kanosh was wintering in California with his mother. Kanosh returned to Utah and over the next few years rose to the position of head chief of the Pavahnt Ute band.[2]

From his earliest contact with the Mormons, Chief Kanosh was interested in maintaining peace and fostering friendly relations. Kanosh adopted some aspects of European attire in the late 1850s and was baptized into the LDS church in 1858, though after his conversion he continued to practice many aspects of his native religion, like Shamanism and ritual hunts.[3]

Kanosh’s people had practiced horticulture long before white settlers arrived in the Pahvant Valley, growing “corn, beans, pumpkins, squashes, potatoes, &c” and showed interest in permanently adopting a settled, agricultural lifestyle. A Deseret News article from December 1851 recounts the Pahavant Chief’s desire to stop “roaming,” preferring “to be instructed in tilling the soil.”[4] In the 1850s Brigham Young established a farm for the Pahvant Indians at Upper Corn Creek.

Fillmore (18 miles northeast of present-day Kanosh) was established in 1852. In 1859 two Fillmore residents, Peter Robison and Peter Boyce, left Fillmore and established Petersburg at Lower Corn Creek, three miles southwest of the Kanosh Indian village. They were joined by Charles Hopkins, a member of the 1849 Southern Expedition party. Petersburg grew steadily until 1867 when Brigham Young spoke at a Sunday meeting on April 28 encouraging those in Petersburg to move to Upper Corn Creek, to the site that would come to be called Kanosh.[5]

Originally the Kanosh Ward Tithing Office, now the Kanosh DUP Museum.

Unlike many towns, the townsite of Kanosh was surveyed in 1867 and completely plotted out before settlement began. Families received plots of land through a lottery system. By 1869 about 100 families lived in Kanosh. Mortimer W. Warner is credited with suggesting the town be named after Chief Kanosh.[6] Most families in Kanosh had small farms where they grew wheat, alfalfa, and sugar cane (processed into molasses) for family consumption. Families kept pigs and chickens, and many ran summer dairy operations in nearby canyons. The main sources of income were beef, wool and mutton.[7]

Upper Corn Creek had been occupied by Chief Kanosh and his people, but they had moved toward Meadow by the time Mormons began settling the area. In 1869 (after grasshoppers destroyed their crop in 1868) Kanosh would temporarily relocate his people to the Uintah Reservation, which had been created by President Abraham Lincoln in 1861.[8] Up until this point Kanosh had resisted relocating his people to the reservation.

Chief Kanosh married four times. His first wife was thought to be possessed by an evil spirit and executed. His third wife was executed after murdering his second wife. Finally, Chief Kanosh married Sally Young Kanosh, a Bannock Indian woman who had been raised in the home of Brigham Young’s wife, Clara Decker Young. Sally, the daughter of a chief, had been taken captive as a child by a rival Indian group and tortured before being sold to Charles Decker, Brigham Young’s brother-in-law. [9]

Chief Kanosh grave marker in Kanosh Cemetery.

In his final years, Chief Kanosh lived with his wife Sally in a log house in Kanosh that had been gifted to him. He died in December of 1881 and was buried in the first Kanosh cemetery, which site is now lost. Sally Young Kanosh died two years later. In 1934 the Sally Kanosh Camp of the DUP worked with the Civilian Conservation Corps camp stationed in Kanosh to erect a monument to Chief Kanosh in the city’s new cemetery.[10] The Kanosh Reservation was organized in 1929, expanded in 1935 and 1937, and would be the last reservation established in Utah until 1984.[11]

Chief Kanosh was revered by Mormons and Indians alike, and the harmony that existed between Mormon settlers and Native Americans in the area was due in large part to Kanosh. Chief Kanosh consistently chose a path of compromise with the white Mormon settlers. This willingness to be flexible allowed Kanosh and his band to foster good relations with the incoming settlers while still maintaining autonomy and independence.[12]

Kanosh Mercantile.

The earliest route between Salt Lake City and Los Angeles wound through the town of Kanosh. In the early 20th century, as traffic increased and the automobile became popular, this route became known as the Arrowhead Trail. In the 1920s the Arrowhead Trail became U.S. Highway 91, Southern Utah’s first paved interstate. This artery brought traffic to Kanosh, and businesses flourished. Then, in 1973, Interstate-15 replaced Highway 91. Though it followed some sections of 91, I-15 bypassed Kanosh. The rerouting of the freeway brought about the end of most businesses in Kanosh. The business sector has never recovered. The only remaining supplier of general groceries in town is Kanosh Mercantile. Most residents travel to Fillmore for necessary services and shopping.[13]

Kanosh remains a predominantly agricultural community. According to the 2010 census, the population of Kanosh was 474 and the estimated population for 2017 was 548.

[1] Edward Leo Lyman, Linda King Newell, and Utah State Historical Society, A History of Millard County, (Utah Centennial County History Series, 1999), 34-38.

[2] Edward Leo Lyman, “Chief Kanosh: Champion of Peace and Forbearance.” Journal of Mormon History 35, no. 1 (2009): 161.

[3] Hyrum S. Lewis, “Kanosh and Ute Identity in Territorial Utah,” Utah Historical Society, Volume 71, Number 1-4, (2003): 340.

[4] “Sketch of a trip to Pauvan [sic] Valley.” Deseret (Weekly) News. December, 13, 1851, 3

[5] Leavitt Christensen, Birth of Kanosh (1996), 15.

[6] Edward Leo Lyman, Linda King Newell, and Utah State Historical Society, A History of Millard County (Utah Centennial County History Series. 1999), 115.

[7] Christensen, Birth of Kanosh, 67.

[8] Forrest S. Cuch, David Begay, Utah State Historical Society, and Utah. Division of Indian Affairs, A History of Utah’s American Indians (Salt Lake City: Utah State Division of Indian Affairs : Utah State Division of History, 2000), 192.

[9]  E. L. Black, “Life Story of Indian Chief Kanosh,” 1-2.

[10] Christensen, Birth of Kanosh, 55-56.

[11] “An Act To reserve nine hundred and twenty acres on the public domain for the use and benefit of the Kanosh Band of Indians residing in the vicinity of Kanosh, Utah” (1929); “An act to reserve eighty acres on the public domain for the use and benefit of the Kanosh Band of Indians in the State of Utah” (1935); “An Act To reserve certain lands in the State of Utah for the Kanosh Band of Paiute Indians” (1937); Cuch, Begay, Utah State Historical Society, and Utah. Division of Indian Affairs, A History of Utah’s American Indians,142.

[12]Lewis, “Kanosh and Ute Identity,” 342-346.

[13] Christensen, Birth of Kanosh, 74.

For Further Reference:

Secondary Sources:

Christensen, Leavitt. Birth of Kanosh. 1996.

Cuch, Forrest S., Begay, David, Utah State Historical Society, and Utah. Division of Indian Affairs. A History of Utah’s American Indians. Pbk. ed. Salt Lake City: Utah State Division of Indian Affairs : Utah State Division of History, 2000.

Lewis, Hyrum S. “Kanosh and Ute Identity in Territorial Utah.” Utah Historical Society, Volume 71, Number 1-4, (2003): 332-347

Lyman, Edward Leo. “Chief Kanosh: Champion of Peace and Forbearance.” Journal of Mormon History 35, no. 1 (2009): 157-207.

Lyman, Edward Leo, Newell, Linda King, and Utah State Historical Society. A History of Millard County. Utah Centennial County History Series. 1999.F

For more information on roads, environment, and memory, see Rogers, Jedediah Smart. Roads in the Wilderness : Conflict in Canyon Country. 2013.

Primary Sources:

“An Act To reserve nine hundred and twenty acres on the public domain for the use and benefit of the Kanosh Band of Indians residing in the vicinity of Kanosh, Utah” (1929)

“An act to reserve eighty acres on the public domain for the use and benefit of the Kanosh Band of Indians in the State of Utah” (1935)

“An Act To reserve certain lands in the State of Utah for the Kanosh Band of Paiute Indians” (1937)

Black, E. L. “Chief Kanosh and Kanosh Town.” Utah Humanities Research Foundation 1905-04-13

Black, E. L. “Life Story of Indian Chief Kanosh.” Utah Humanities Research Foundation. 1945.

Callister, Thomas. “Correspondence.” Deseret News. August, 11, 1869, 2.

“Sketch of a trip to Pauvan [sic] Valley.” Deseret (Weekly) News. December, 13, 1851, 3.

Wood, Lyman S. “Correspondence.” Deseret News. December, 26, 1855, 5.

Battle Creek

Published / by Brittney Carter / Leave a Comment

Write up by Brittney Carter


40°21’48” N 111°42’2” W

Elevation 5260

Marker originally placed by: Jared Warburton, 1997

Battle Creek monument text

Marker Text:

“This monument is in memory of the first armed engagement between the Mormon pioneers and the Native Americans that inhabited Utah Valley, and serves as a reminder of the extreme sacrifice given by both people. This skirmish at the mouth of Battle Creek Canyon gave it its name.”

Extended Research

Kiwanis Park at Battle Creek

Battle Creek, which is now known as Pleasant Grove, was the site of the first battle between Native Americans and Utah pioneers. Mormon (LDS) leaders in Salt Lake City ordered militiamen to investigate reports in Utah Valley that Indians were killing cattle and that they had stolen Brigham Young’s horses. The accusation of horse theft proved untrue. As a result, the militiamen received new orders from Salt Lake City “stating that as the horses were not stolen . . . we need not spend any more time in search of them.” They were, however, directed to continue the expedition to investigate the killing of cattle. As Hosea Stout, one of the militiamen recalled, “the nature of our expedition was not in the least changed.”(1).

Battle Creek Marker

After a few days of travel, the militiamen made it to what is now American Fork and rested over night with a band of Ute Indians. Hosea Stout wrote, “the Company [got] an early start and traveled south to the Provo, a fine large stream and well timbered in the valley. This is a beautiful farming country. Here we found the Utahs, who . . . received us friendly but were much excited being evidently afraid of us. After spending an hour or so with them and learning what we could, respecting those we were in pursuit of and also explaining the object of our visit we traveled on. Little Chief accompanied us about three miles up the Provo where we encamped for the night”(1).

The militiamen split into two groups after they came upon a few Native Americans at Battle Creek Canyon who were still sleeping. When the Indians awoke and saw that they were surrounded by white men they tried to flee farther up the canyon, only to find another group of militiamen waiting for them. Before fighting began, an interpreter from among the militia tried to get the Native Americans to surrender.

As Hosea Stout recalled: “Our interpreters talked to them and told them our errand, and asked them to give themselves up. They refused. Our guide talked to them and reasoned with them, but all to no purpose, fight they would unless we went away, then they said they would come out. The guide told them they must come out then or die. . . . The first one shot was their leader. Then such a howling and crying, I think white men never heard before” (1).

After fighting broke out there were several casualties according to Oliver B. Huntington:

“All the bodies we could find were carried together to one place for burial: seven great, fat stout men. . . . When we got back to where we left the dead, there was neither dead nor living anywhere to be found. We did not think them worth hunting for anymore, and started home.” (2).

Mormon pioneers soon settled the land in Utah Valley because of the richness of the soil that militiamen witnessed on this expedition. Brigham Young had already planned to expand further south. As one history of Provo recounted, “Initial Mormon settlement thus was on the site of Salt Lake City. Nevertheless, Young planned to explore all valleys, and, when opportunity permitted, establish settlements in those sufficiently well-watered” (3). Mormon leaders selected Utah Valley as one area for settlement which led to further conflict with Ute Indians in the region.

Battle Creek falls

Battle Creek remained the name of the area until years later when Mormon pioneers decided to change it to Pleasant Grove. The monument that is left at the base of Battle Creek Canyon, which leads to Battle Creek Falls, stands as a reminder of the first battle fought between Mormon pioneers and Native Americans. It also serves as a reminder that Mormon settlement came at a significant cost to Native Americans, in loss of life, land, and culture.




  1. On the Mormon Frontier, The Diary of Hosea Stout, 1844–1861, Vol. 2, Edited by Juanita Brooks, (Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 1964), 344-347.
  2. Diary of Oliver B. Huntington, 1847–1900, Vol. 2, L. Tom Perry Special Collections, Harold B. Lee Library, Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah, 47–55, 331-341.
  3. Writers Program, Provo, Pioneer Mormon City (Portland, Oregon : Binfords & Mort1942), 36-44.

For Further Reference

Primary Sources

On the Mormon Frontier, The Diary of Hosea Stout, 1844–1861, Vol. 2, Edited by Juanita Brooks, (Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 1964).

Diary of Oliver B. Huntington, 1847–1900, Vol. 2, L. Tom Perry Special Collections, Harold B. Lee Library, Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah.

Secondary Sources

Jared Farmer, On Zion’s Mount: Mormons, Indians, and the American Landscape (Cambridge: Mass: Harvard University Press, 2008).

Writers Program, Provo, Pioneer Mormon City (Portland, Oregon : Binfords & Mort1942).