For most LDS historians, B.H. Roberts set the standard of excellence. Few have matched his attention to detail. The sheer volume of his writings is astounding. Out of print for years, and only available in rare book stores, The Mormon Battalion has been a sought-after work that recounts a time when a contigent of men made an incredible sacrifice that, in a great way, made the Saints' westward trek possible. Preserving much of the original spellings and editorial markings, this limited printing recounts the Battalion's historic 2,000-mile march to the Pacific Ocean.
Understand the sacrifice. In the words of B.H. Roberts:
"...it (the Battalion) brought to the volunteers and to the people much sacrifice. The force was to be recruited from among the fathers of families. Practically five hundred wagons were left without teamsters, and as many families were left without their natural protectors and providers. To volunteer for a 'war-march' of two thousand miles, much of which was desert, under such circumstances, was doubly hard. Moreover the Mormon people had little to be grateful for to the government of the United States. To respond to the call was a manifestation of unselfishness not often paralleled in history."