160 years ago today - Sep 7, 1857
The Fancher wagon train from Arkansas, bound for California, is attacked at dawn at Mountain Meadows in southern Utah. The emmigrants form a defensive position and launch a counterattack quickly killing two Paiute Indians. John D. Lee watches the battle and later commented on the situation, "Now we knew the Indians could not do the work, and we were in a sad fix." Before the attack the Fancher party's cattle (which had earlier been promised to the Paiutes by Brigham Young) had been driven off. In the afternoon the battle becomes a standoff. Stake President Isaac Haight, former bodyguard of Joseph Smith, decides to send James Holt Haslam on horseback to Brigham Young for instructions.