Picturing history: Council Point, Iowa

Published: Wednesday, Nov. 23 2011 5:00 a.m. MST

A historical marker honors the memory of Council Point, Iowa, a small but strategically important town Several miles south of Council Bluffs, Iowa. It was a support town for the construction and operation of the Middle Mormon Ferry, where the Latter-day Saints and others could cross the river.

Kenneth Mays

Several miles south of Council Bluffs, Iowa, on the east side of the Missouri River, was a site known as Council Point. It was a support town for the construction and operation of the Middle Mormon Ferry, where members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and others could cross the river. The bend in the river where they crossed is no longer situated where it was at that time.

For a time, President Brigham Young made Council Point his place of residence so that he could oversee the construction of the ferry.

A historical marker honors the memory of this small but strategically important town.

Locals recount that Council Point was the site of a final dance, perhaps July 18, 1846, and farewells between members of the Mormon Battalion and their loved ones. From there, the Battalion continued down the east side of the Missouri on its way to Fort Leavenworth, Kan., and beyond.

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