Fort Utah

Fort Utah

Fort Utah

Just a few days after the Battle Creek Massacre, the Mormon church decided to build Fort Utah. President of the soon-to-be Provo Branch, John S. Higbee, along with brother Isaac and Dimick B. Hintington, church counselors, led a group of about 150 people from Salt Lake City to build the fortress at the present-day city of Provo, Utah. Established on March 12, 1849, the fort included several log houses, surrounded by a 14-foot palisade, with gates on the east and west sides, and a middle deck, for a cannon.

The fort became a trading post for a short time, with the Mormon settlers trading guns and ammunition with the Indians for furs and pelts. However, this changed when three Mormon men killed an Indian called “Old Bishop.” The tension between those living at the fort increased, ultimately resulting in the Battle of Fort Utah.

The original fort is long gone today, but a scaled-down version has been recreated in Pioneer Park at 500 W. Center St, Provo, Utah.


© Kathy Alexander/Legends of America, updated January 2023.

Also See:

Forts Across America

Forts Photo Gallery

More Utah Forts

Utah – The Beehive State