In 1846, a group of Latter-day Saints from Mississippi began their trek west in anticipation of joining the main body of members coming from Nauvoo. But because of the U.S. government's mustering the Mormon Battalion, that meeting was postponed. The Mississippi members, totaling some 60, traveled instead to Fort Pueblo, about 300 miles south of the main trail. There, they set up a temporary community which proved lifesaving to sick members of the battalion, who arrived soon after.
A granite monument to these early pioneers stands today at Mormon Springs in Monroe County, Miss., where many of them were first baptized. The 4-foot-high, 8-foot-long monument tells their story and lists their contributions to the later settlement of the West.