Menu
In the News

Ceremony marks 175th anniversary of Mormon Battalion participation in U.S. flag-raising in Los Angeles


Dressed in period clothing, the Fort Moore Garrison reenactors celebrated on July 4, 2022, the 175th anniversary of when the U.S. flag was raised over Los Angeles, California, by U.S. troops, including the Mormon Battalion.

The Mormon Battalion arrived in San Diego, California, on Jan. 29, 1847. About 500 Latter-day Saints mustered the previous summer and began a nearly 2,000-mile march from Kanesville, now in Council Bluffs, Iowa. 

In April 1847, the Mormon Battalion was assigned to build a fort on the highest hill in Pueblo de Los Angeles. ​​When it was completed, soldiers obtained two 70-foot logs from the San Bernardino Mountains for their “Liberty Pole.” The U.S. troops serving in the area were assembled and with the reading of the Declaration of Independence, marching, music and gun salutes, hoisted the first U.S. flag to be raised over Los Angeles, on July 4, 1847. The event was followed by a ball attended by the officers and wives of the Alta Californio military and hosted by the U.S. officers. 

merlin_2933287.jpg

Descendants and members of the Los Pobladores historical group dance the waltz at the Fort Moore Pioneer Memorial during a reenactment of the flag raising on July 4, 2022, on the 175th anniversary of when the U.S. flag was raised over Los Angeles by U.S. troops, including the Mormon Battalion, on July 4, 1847.

Dean Mills

Since 1990, the Fort Moore Memorial Committee, which includes Church members, has sponsored the Independence Day event and invites community groups to be part of the reenactment, including descendants of the Spanish Los Pobladores and Californios who were present in 1847. 

At the reenactment, participants were in period dress, and the original program was followed with the raising of the flag with 28 stars, a dedication of Fort Moore, reading the Declaration of Independence and gun salutes to each of the 28 states then in the Union. Members of Los Pobladores danced a waltz to help the audience imagine the festivities at the ball.

The present-day ceremony takes place annually at the Fort Moore Pioneer Memorial built in 1958 honoring the Mormon Battalion and California pioneers at 501 N. Hill St., across the street from where the original fort was built.

20220704_1048401_1.jpg

Descendants and members of the Los Pobladores historical group dance the waltz at the Fort Moore Pioneer Memorial during a reenactment of the flag raising on July 4, 2022, on the 175th anniversary of when the U.S. flag was raised over Los Angeles by U.S. troops, including the Mormon Battalion, on July 4, 1847.

Cindy Hoffman

Read more about the Mormon Battalion:

Newsletters
Subscribe for free and get daily or weekly updates straight to your inbox
The three things you need to know everyday
Highlights from the last week to keep you informed