IRA HATCH , a MORMON SHOOTER and CLUBBER; In 1857 Hatch was a private in one of the militia platoons attached to John D. Lee's 4th Battalion in the Iron Military District. born: August 5, 1835 at Farmersville, Cattaraugus County, New York died: September 30, 1909 at Fruitland, San Juan County, New Mexico
buried: September 3, 1909 at Fruitland, San Jaun County, New Mexico.
During the massacre at Mountain Meadows it is not clear that Hatch was on the scene although he may have been. Rather, Hatch's involvement was in leading a band of Indians in tracking down several emigrants who reportedly escaped the fusilade at the Meadows and were fleeing toward California across the Nevada desert. In Rocky Mountain Saints, published by T.B.H. Stenhouse in 1873, Hatch is alleged to have tracked several escaping emigrants and to have played the main role in killing them, or ordering them killed.
The LDS Church has knowingly sponsored, endorsed, and
forever immortalized this butcher into history.
Hatch was listed in Indian Superintendent Jacob Forney's 1859 list of the "most guilty" and in Rocky Mountain Saints. "White Flag: America's First 9-11," by Wayne A. Capurro, is an interesting take on Ira Hatch.
As an Indian interpreter, Ira played a major part in organizing the Paiutes to assist in the massacre. And that furthermore, he, along with a small group of Paiutes, hunted down and killed in cold blood the three men who snuck away from the Fancher Wagon Train to get help. There are several accounts that implicate him, including the official presidential report which names him as one of those most responsible.
He not only participated in this heinous deed, but helped plan it too. He was only 22 years-old, and hardly in a position to play a role in the decisions of this crime.
He likely was only following the orders of his local authorities. The local authorities received their orders from George A. Smith, second in command and directly under church President Brigham Young.