Moroni was settled by families from Nephi in 1859, but it had a real identity crisis. It went through the names Sanpitch, Mego, Little Rome, and Duck Springs before Sanpete’s first probate judge named it Moroni City after a Nephite Prophet in The Book of Mormon.
Moroni sits midway between Nephi and Manti on the most pronounced “North Bend” of the San Pitch River. Families from Nephi moved there early in 1859. High water in 1862 forced the town’s founders to move away from the river site and spread north over the rolling hills, a setting best seen when approaching Moroni from the south. For water, they tapped the San Pitch farther east with an intricate and expensive system of canals and ditches that stretched from Mt. Pleasant to Fountain Green’s south fields. Reaching out in all directions, the city was big enough by 1891 to support an “opera house” that seated 1,000 persons.