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AIH-11: Utah American Indian and non-Indian Conflicts

Group Size

Small Groups


Utah LessonPlans


Students will study the relationship between American Indian and non-Indians during the Utah Territorial period.



Background for Teachers

This is the third of five lessons in the Seventh Grade American Indian History Lesson Plan Unit:

Enduring Understanding:
The long, difficult, and unique process of statehood involving Utah's American Indians and non-Indian peoples, cultures, and ideas left a legacy that continues to shape Utah's political, social, and economic landscape today.

Instructional Procedures

Essential Question 1: What was the relationship between American Indians and non-Indians during the Utah Territorial period?

  1. Read text and complete multiple-text analysis sheet on primary documents concerning the following conflicts:
    1. Bear River Massacre (Shoshone)
    2. Black Hawk War and Walker War (Ute)
    3. Marysvale (Paiute)
    4. Mountain Meadow Massacre (non-Indians disguised as Indians, Paiute)
    5. Long Walk (Navajo)
    6. Posey War (Paiute, Ute

    (Note: most of these conflicts are discussed in A History of Utah's American Indians, edited by Forrest Cuch.)

  2. Evaluate findings for agreement/disagreement among sources.

Essential Question 2: What role did Utah American Indians and non-Indians play in Utah's quest for statehood?

  1. In five or six groups, create an informational display about American Indian conflicts during the Utah Territorial period.
  2. Create an oral presentation for the class.
  3. Organize a wall display (classroom, school, district, community, or museum).

Assessment Plan

Essential Question 1: Assessment

  1. Completion of a multiple text analysis sheet
  2. Evaluation of information.

Essential Question 2: Assessment

  • Written understanding of how American Indian conflicts affected statehood.
  • Create display of students understanding of the various conflicts of the Utah tribes.
  • Students will identify conflicts in Utah by location on the tribal map.


Utah State Office of Education
Social Studies Enhancement Committee
American Indian History

Lesson Plan Writers:

  • Gloria Thompson - Ute
  • Nanette Watson
  • Jeanette Badback - White Mesa Ute
  • Don Mose - Navajo
  • Merrillee Chamberlain - Paiute
  • Venita Tavepont - Ute
  • Rebecca Bennally - Navajo
  • Tauna Christianson
  • Gayle Buxton
  • Judith Hegewald
Under the Direction of the Indian Education Specialist, Shirlee Silversmith. Special thanks to Dolores Riley.

Created: 01/31/2005
Updated: 02/03/2018