|Mormon fort at Pipe Spring|
We were driving along Utah Highway 59 across northern Arizona when we saw a sign for it. We decided if it was less than 10 miles off the highway, we’d visit it. As it turned out, the monument, which is operated jointly by the National Park Service and Paiute Indian Tribe, is less than a half mile down the side road.
It was well worth the stop. There’s a small visitor center with interpretive exhibits and a 23-minute video explaining the significance of Pipe Spring. Outside, there are brush huts used by the Paiutes, a brick fort built by Brigham Young and other outbuildings, including corrals for animals.
|Indian huts at Pipe Spring|
In the second half of the 1800s, Pipe Spring was part of Brigham Young’s plan to settle Utah, with residents pledging 10 percent of their cattle operation to the Mormon church. The cattle operation was not that successful, but the area became a haven for church polygamists.