Almo is a very small unincorporated community in Cassia County, Idaho, United States. It is a short distance away from the City of Rocks National Reserve, a 14,300-acre (58 km2) area with granite columns as much as 600 feet (180 m) high. Almo is renowned for its scenic, historic and geologic significance.
Many pioneers followed the Oregon Trail west in the middle of the 19th century, and passed by the future site of Almo. Several of these pioneers wrote letters home describing their encounters with Native Americans. Although these accounts tended to be exaggerated by participants, there is historical evidence of several small incidents that took place from 1860-1862.
However, Almo's most famous historical event, the Almo Massacre of 1861, has been viewed with skepticism in recent years. In 1938, the Sons and Daughters of Idaho Pioneers paid for and erected a marker in remembrance of the massacre, in which a wagon train of nearly 300 pioneers was surrounded and slaughtered by Indians. However, the earliest written record of this event is from 1927, and the total absence of information about either the slaughtered pioneers or the six survivors has led the Idaho State Historical Society to recommend the removal of the marker.
Almo was established around a post office in 1881. It had previously been part of a ranch belonging to Myron B. Durfee and had often been considered to be in Utah. By 1890, 40 of the 55 families in the Almo vicinity belonged to the LDS Church, and most claimed English or Scandinavian ancestry. Almo at the turn of the century boasted a store, a post office, a school, a brass band, a theatrical group, three saloons, and a welfare society. Population reached 260 by 1920. This was the peak of Almo's population growth. Population declined in the years to follow, as less land was available to homestead.
- Idaho State Historical Society (February 1971). "Almo Massacre" (PDF). Reference Series (232). Retrieved 10 August 2013.
- Loewen, James (1999). Lies Across America: What Our Historic Sites Get Wrong. New York: New Press. pp. 89–93.
- Madsen, Brigham D. (Fall 1993). "The "Almo Massacre" Revisited". Idaho Yesterdays.
- Andrew Jenson. Encyclopedic History of the Church. (Salt Lake City: Deseret News Press, 1941) p. 12
- National Park Service. "Historical Development of the City of the Rocks Region" (PDF). Historic Resources Study.
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