The Las Vegas Mormon Fort is one of Nevada's oldest extant buildings. In 1855 the first Euro-American settlers in the area, leaders of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, built this mission on the Spanish-Mormon Trail between Salt Lake City and San Bernardino, California, to assert Mormon interests in this part of the West and to serve as a base for converting Native Americans to the Mormon faith and as a way station for travelers on the trail.
Only a 10-foot-by-30-foot building survives of what once was a 150-foot-square walled settlement. The walls of adobe brick are 2 feet thick at the bottom and 1 foot thick at the top (the base of the walls had to be thick enough to support the weight of the walls above it). Though its caretakers have made alterations to replace adobe, which is vulnerable to erosion, the basic simple, functional design of the building remains.