Provo Canyon Guard Quarters
Provo Canyon Guard Quarters
|Location||U.S. Highway 189
Provo Canyon, Utah
|NRHP reference #||86001291|
|Added to NRHP||1986|
Provo Canyon Grand Quarters
The Provo Canyon Guard Quarters is an important historical site, preserving the conflict held during the Utah War, a bloodless standoff between the federal government and the LDS Church which lasted from 1857 to 1858. These guard quarters were one of three fortifications built by the Mormon people in response to the threat they perceived from the federal government during the Utah War. The Provo Canyon Quarters, due to its location, was not likely to be involved in any battles and was assigned a mere ten men to keep up the defenses. After the Utah War this fortification served as a station to observe Native American activity until the end of the Black Hawk Indian War in 1868, after which the Guard Quarters have served little purpose.
The Provo Canyon Guard Quarters are built off of U.S. Route 189 a couple hundred feet above the canyon floor and on the north side of Provo Canyon. The elevation the Guard Quarters are built upon is about five thousand three hundred and thirty feet. Although several of the walls remain intact, much of the architecture has deteriorated, giving way to scrub oak and additional vegetation. The quarters remain easily identifiable however.
In the year 1857, president James Buchanan sent a two thousand five hundred man army into the state of Utah to fight off a rumoured Mormon rebellion. There was no rebellion, however, in order to protect the LDS Church, Brigham Young responded to this action by declaring martial law and gathering in the local militia known as the Nauvoo Legion, comprising approximately one thousand two hundred men. It was at this time that fortifications were built in Echo Canyon (Summit County, Utah), Mormon Flat, and in Provo Canyon.
The Utah War was resolved in 1858 as colonel Thomas L. Kane, a respected man both among the Mormon faith and among the federal troops, helped with negotiations. New governmental officials were set in place within the territory, including Alfred Cumming replacing Brigham Young as governor, and federal troops were staged forty miles outside of Salt Lake City, at Camp Floyd. When the American Civil War arose in 1861, the army was forced to abandon their encampment and leave. This turned out to advantage the Mormon people, as the army sold many of their supplies to them at a very low cost.
- National Park Service (2010-07-09). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service.
- Robert Roper (April 1986). "National Register of Historic Places Inventory/Nomination: Provo Canyon Guard Quarters" (PDF). National Park Service. and accompanying four photos from 1986
- Roper, Roger. National Park Service. "National Register of Historic Places Inventory -- Nomination Form." April 1986.
- Carter, D. Robert (June 26, 2005), "Guard Quarters: A Den of Dereliction", Provo Daily Herald, p. B2