Conflict and Violence in Early Utah Territory

As white settler populations grew in the Great Basin during the mid- to late-nineteenth century, moments of conflict and violence erupted between settlers, miners, overland immigrants, Native peoples, U.S. military forces, and others. These stories highlight such moments of conflict.

Memorializing Mountain Meadows

In the mid-1850s, the Mormons of Utah were not on friendly terms with the United States of America. Previous persecutions from the government caused Mormons to be distrustful of the United States. The United States saw the Mormon theocracy that…

Battle Creek Marker

This site highlights the fraught relationship that often existed between white settlers and Native Americans in Utah Territory. The Battle Creek Marker is in what is now known as Pleasant Grove, Utah. Here, on the morning of March 5, 1849, the…

The Rockwell-Dibble Gunfight

Porter, as he was called, has been credited with killing more outlaws than Wyatt Earp, Bat Masterson, Doc Holliday, and Tom Horn combined - a reputation which earned him the rather menacing nickname, “Destroying Angel.” Having been one of the…

Death at Mountain Meadows

The mid-1850s relationship between Latter-day Saints (or Mormons) and the United States government, who felt that they were growing too powerful, was tense. In response to the growing power of the leaders of the LDS Church in Utah, the federal…

Reexamining the Bear River Massacre

Colonel Patrick Edward Connor, upon hearing miner’s charges that Shoshones had stolen good and animals from them, had led his California Volunteers north from Fort Douglas in Utah Territory to Bear Hunter’s Shoshone village adjacent to the Bear…

Colonel Patrick Edward Connor and the Bear River Massacre

President Abraham Lincoln placed Connor in charge of the 3rd California Volunteer Infantry at the outbreak of the American Civil War in 1861. Fearing that the Confederates would try to isolate the newly formed state of California from the rest of…