Bluff was the first settlement of the white man in San Juan County and its first county seat. It was founded April 6, 1880, by the San Juan Mission “called” by the L.D.S Church to establish friendly relations with the Indians. A small band of mission scouts found good farm land at this location in 1879 and it was resolved to settle here. Late in October 250 colonists from several southwestern Utah communities began the migration via the Hole-in-the-Rock shortcut across the Colorado River. Contrary to expectations this route proved almost impassable and after nearly six months of the most strenuous effort the exhausted company reached this site. No pioneering band ever overcame greater difficulties in establishing and maintaining a home. The turbulent river proved uncontrollable and for 40 years hostile Indians and various types of white renegades threatened both life and property. In spite of hardships and personal sacrifice the missionaries remained steadfast to their calling until released by the Church. The San Juan Mission is an unexcelled example of the highest type of Pioneer endeavor.
Erected by the National Society, Sons of Utah Pioneers – May 31, 1958
Note: This plaque is attached to a rock formation called “Sunbonnet Rock” due to its shape suggestive of a sunbonnet, and is often referred to by this name.
See other historic markers in the series on this page for SUP Markers.