After Emerson Palmer led the prisoners of Arizona in a state-wide prison revolt, they assumed control of the state. Following this, the Federal Government deployed troops to put down the rebellion. However, they grossly underestimated the numbers and dedication of Palmer's makeshift army. The Federal forces were overwhelmed. Although more of a skirmish than a battle, the event held real significance for the citizens of Arizona. In the aftermath of the conflict, Palmer addressed the population and swayed them to his side with his legendary public speaking skills. Palmer announced Arizona's succession from the Union and the so-called "Convict State" was born.
Although a second attempt by the US Government to reclaim Arizona was expected, it was delayed due to ongoing debate in Washington D.C. about the issue. Before a consensus was reached, the National Fuel Reserve exploded and the creep began to spread. By the end of the chaos that followed, the landscape US politics had drastically changed and the prospect of reclaiming Palmer's territory was no longer relevant.