"Virgin River Canyon, Arizona" by NPS , public domain

Old Spanish

National Historic Trail - AZ,CA,CO,NV,NM,UT

The Old Spanish Trail (Spanish: Viejo Sendero Español) is a historical trade route that connected the northern New Mexico settlements of (or near) Santa Fe, New Mexico with those of Los Angeles, California and southern California. Approximately 700 mi (1,100 km) long, the trail ran through areas of high mountains, arid deserts, and deep canyons. It is considered one of the most arduous of all trade routes ever established in the United States. Explored, in part, by Spanish explorers as early as the late 16th century, the trail was extensively used by traders with pack trains from about 1830 until the mid-1850s.

maps

Map of the U.S. National Park System. Published by the National Park Service (NPS).National Park System - National Park Units

Map of the U.S. National Park System. Published by the National Park Service (NPS).

Map of the U.S. National Park System with Unified Regions. Published by the National Park Service (NPS).National Park System - National Park Units and Regions

Map of the U.S. National Park System with Unified Regions. Published by the National Park Service (NPS).

Map of the U.S. National Heritage Areas. Published by the National Park Service (NPS).National Park System - National Heritage Areas

Map of the U.S. National Heritage Areas. Published by the National Park Service (NPS).

Arizona Strip Visitor Map with recreational information for the Arizona Strip, Grand Canyon-Parashant National Monument (NM), Vermilion Cliffs National Monument (NM), and surrounding areas (Grand Canyon, North Kaibab National Forest, etc). Published by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM).Arizona Strip - East

Arizona Strip Visitor Map with recreational information for the Arizona Strip, Grand Canyon-Parashant National Monument (NM), Vermilion Cliffs National Monument (NM), and surrounding areas (Grand Canyon, North Kaibab National Forest, etc). Published by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM).

Coconino County Map of Arizona Surface Management Responsibility. Published by Arizona State Land Department and U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM).AZ Surface Management Responsibility - Coconino County

Coconino County Map of Arizona Surface Management Responsibility. Published by Arizona State Land Department and U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM).

Statewide Map of Arizona Surface Management Responsibility. Published by Arizona State Land Department and U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM).AZ Surface Management Responsibility - Arizona State

Statewide Map of Arizona Surface Management Responsibility. Published by Arizona State Land Department and U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM).

brochures

Map of the entire Old Spanish National Historic Trail (NHT). Published by the National Park Service (NPS).Old Spanish - Map

Map of the entire Old Spanish National Historic Trail (NHT). Published by the National Park Service (NPS).

Brochure of Old Spanish National Historic Trail (NHT). Published by the National Park Service (NPS).Old Spanish - Brochure

Brochure of Old Spanish National Historic Trail (NHT). Published by the National Park Service (NPS).

Large Print Guide of Old Spanish National Historic Trail (NHT). Published by the National Park Service (NPS).Old Spanish - Large Print Guide

Large Print Guide of Old Spanish National Historic Trail (NHT). Published by the National Park Service (NPS).

The Mormon Pioneer National Historic Trail route across Iowa. Published by the National Park Service (NPS).NHT Auto Tour Guides - Iowa

The Mormon Pioneer National Historic Trail route across Iowa. Published by the National Park Service (NPS).

The National Historic Trail route from Western Missouri through Northeastern Kansas. Published by the National Park Service (NPS).NHT Auto Tour Guides - Missouri and Kansas

The National Historic Trail route from Western Missouri through Northeastern Kansas. Published by the National Park Service (NPS).

The National Historic Trail route from Nebraska through Northeastern Colorado. Published by the National Park Service (NPS).NHT Auto Tour Guides - Nebraska and Colorado

The National Historic Trail route from Nebraska through Northeastern Colorado. Published by the National Park Service (NPS).

The National Historic Trail route along the Snake River through Idaho. Published by the National Park Service (NPS).NHT Auto Tour Guides - Idaho

The National Historic Trail route along the Snake River through Idaho. Published by the National Park Service (NPS).

The National Historic Trail route across Wyoming. Published by the National Park Service (NPS).NHT Auto Tour Guides - Wyoming

The National Historic Trail route across Wyoming. Published by the National Park Service (NPS).

The National Historic Trail route across Utah. Published by the National Park Service (NPS).NHT Auto Tour Guides - Utah

The National Historic Trail route across Utah. Published by the National Park Service (NPS).

The National Historic Trail route across Nevada. Published by the National Park Service (NPS).NHT Auto Tour Guides - Nevada

The National Historic Trail route across Nevada. Published by the National Park Service (NPS).

https://www.nps.gov/olsp/index.htm https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Old_Spanish_Trail_(trade_route) The Old Spanish Trail (Spanish: Viejo Sendero Español) is a historical trade route that connected the northern New Mexico settlements of (or near) Santa Fe, New Mexico with those of Los Angeles, California and southern California. Approximately 700 mi (1,100 km) long, the trail ran through areas of high mountains, arid deserts, and deep canyons. It is considered one of the most arduous of all trade routes ever established in the United States. Explored, in part, by Spanish explorers as early as the late 16th century, the trail was extensively used by traders with pack trains from about 1830 until the mid-1850s. Follow the routes of mule pack trains across the Southwest on the Old Spanish National Historic Trail between Santa Fe, New Mexico, and Los Angeles, California. New Mexican traders moved locally produced merchandise across what are now six states to exchange for mules and horses. You can visit many sites of the Old Spanish National Historic Trail over the 2,680-mile historic route that crosses 6 states. Santa Rosa de Lima de Abiquiú, Abiquiú, New Mexico crumbling adobe structure with blue sky Santa Rosa de Lima de Abiquiú provided a way station for travelers along the Old Spanish Trail in the 1800s. It is privately owned by the Archdiocese of Santa Fe. Rio Chama River, Abiquiú, New Mexico hikers walk beside a river with cottonwoods alongside the river This section of the Rio Chama River, tributary of the Rio Grande, is located about six miles north of Abiquiú, New Mexico and flows through the Carson National Forest. Sierra Blanca, San Luis Valley, Colorado desert scrub in foreground, spiky mountains in background, clouds Sierra Blanca is a prominent mountain in the Sangre de Cristo Range along San Luis Valley on Highway 17. Locating landmarks were essential to traveling the Old Spanish Trail. San Rafael Swell, Utah desert scenery, dead tree, blue sky with puffy coulds The San Rafael Swell is a huge craggy geologic feature (an anticline), about 75 miles by 40 miles, located in south-central Utah approximately 30 miles west of Green River. Virgin River Canyon, Arizona a river carves through the landscape, greenery in the foreground, mountains and redrock backdrop This section of the Virgin River Canyon Recreation Area is off Interstate 15 about 20 miles southwest of St. George, Utah and about 20 miles northeast of Mesquite, Nevada Old Spanish Trail segment, Nevada rocky trail through desert with yucca, mountain in the background This trail segment is 5.25 miles, and is part of the Old Spanish Trail/Mormon Road Historic District, outside Blue Diamond, Clark County, Nevada. Mojave Road, California trail through desert scrub with Joshua trees, mountains in the distance, puffy clouds Old Spanish Trail travelers used this section of the historic Mojave Road is within Mojave National Preserve. The Lands of the Overland Trails: Protests against the Mexican American War Almost every movement in American history has a corresponding counter movement. The Mexican American War (1846-48), which resulted in Mexico ceding much of the modern-day American Southwest to the United States, is a good example. With the stroke of a pen, parts of the Santa Fe, California, Oregon, Pony Express, Mormon Pioneer, and Old Spanish trails, as well as El Camino Real de Tierra Adentro, suddenly became American territory. A dirt road snakes down a steep cliff face in the desert. Project Ideas- Communication & National Historic Trails: Old Spanish Trail Communication was an essential aspect of the Old Spanish Trail. Here are a few examples and questions to get you thinking about potential research projects. A historic train depot building, in the desert The Indian Grove within Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve Located near a mountain pass and a perennial water source within the boundaries of Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve is a stand of approximately 200 ponderosa pine trees, of which 72 trees have been culturally modified —that is, altered by people. Known as the Indian Grove, the ponderosa pines with their tall, straight trunks and rusty orange bark composed of broad plates, were peeled and harvested by the Ute, Apache, and other indigenous people in the 19th century. Two people stand next to a large pine tree. Ute Raiding Along the Old Spanish Trail The Old Spanish Trail wound through rugged desert terrain to connect present-day New Mexico and California. Even though Mexico technically controlled the trail corridor, much of it was dominated by American Indians—particularly the Utes. Although hailing mostly from Utah and Colorado, Utes used their superior horsemanship and geographic knowledge to raid as far west as the Pacific Ocean. Series: National History Day National Historic Trails are full of topics waiting to be researched! From the Pony Express to the forced removal of American Indian tribes from their homelands, National Historic Trails tell stories of communication, movement, conflict, perseverance, and change. A covered wagon sits in front of a large sandstone bluff. New Mexico, Colorado, Utah, Arizona, Nevada, California: Old Spanish National Historic Trail Today, the National Park Service and Bureau of Land Management jointly manage the trail. The hazardous mule trade route stands as a testament to the epic story of the West, the struggles early frontiers-people faced in the transport of goods, and the critical ties between the international economics and cultures of North America’s opposite coasts in the mid-1800s. Old Spanish Trail map Become a Junior Ranger for National Historic Trails Learn about the National Historic Trails and earn junior ranger badges! These activities can be completed virtually or after visiting a site along the National Historic Trails. Booklets can be submitted either electronically or by mail. Take a look and start exploring the trails today! small photos of different trail sites with junior ranger badges. Historic Valentine's Day Cards Valentines day cards rose to popularity in the United States in the mid-1800s. Victorian cards were elaborate, decorative, often-lace trimmed, and mass-produced. Not everyone could afford such cards, so handmade cards were very popular with pioneers and others who couldn't buy an expensive card. You can take your Valentine back in time by making a historic card! Use the provided template, or make a handmade card, and return to the 1800s with your love. A historic valentines day card with a rose illustration. National Historic Trails: Historical Routes of National Significance Wondering about National Historic Trails? Check out this infographic with basic information about the trails, their purpose, and where you can go for more information! Infographic about National Historic Trails featuring a map. Full description available at link. National Historic Trails Scrapbooks Imagine if early travelers on the National Historic Trails had a polaroid camera... what would their scrapbooks look like? Though we have many journals describing their experiences, there are obviously very few or no photos at all from these journeys. Cameras didn't exist! Well, we took a crack at it and created scrapbook pages for them! Take a look at what we imagine a trail traveler's scrapbook would like! A scrapbook page depicting multiple scenes from the trail, and relevant icon images. National Historic Trails Fashion Inspiration During NPS Fashion Week, we are exploring some ways fashion inspiration may be found on National Historic Trails (NHTs). On NHTs you’ll find intriguing colors, shapes, textures, histories, and stories. From golden sunsets to feathered hats, NHTs have diverse natural and cultural environments that can inspire the fashionista in us all! A red rock cliff with a path winding through it
Agate Fossil Beds Old Spanish National Historic Trail Fort Laramie City of Rocks Fossil Butte Scotts Bluff Chimne Golden Spike ! Salt Lake City Timpanogos Cave Dinosaur Rocky Mountain !Denver Utah Nevada Colorado Colorado Great Basin Florissant Fossil Beds Black Canyon of the Gunnison Arches Capitol Reef Curecanti Canyonlands Yosemite Cedar Breaks Devils Postpile Bryce Canyon Zion Great Sand Dunes Natural Bridges Glen Canyon Hovenweep Mesa Verde Rainbow Bridge Kings Canyon Aztec Ruins Navajo Pipe Spring Capulin Volcano Manzanar Sequoia Death Valley Las Vegas Canyon de Chelly ! Grand Canyon Chaco Culture Lake Mead Hubbell Trading Post California Bandelier Wupatki !Santa Fe Fort Union Pecos Sunset Crater Volcano Walnut Canyon Mojave Petrified Forest Tuzigoot El Morro Petroglyph El Malpais Montezuma Castle Santa Monica Mountains Los Angeles Salinas Pueblo Missions Arizona ! Channel Islands New Mexico Joshua Tree Tonto Phoenix ! Gila Cliff Dwellings Hohokam Pima Ê Casa Grande Ruins Cabrillo 0 25 50 100 Miles Legend White Sands Old Spanish National Historic Trail Saguaro Fort Bowie
During the winter of 1829-1830, Antonio Armijo led a caravan of 60 men and 100 pack mules from New Mexico to Mission San Gabriel in California, east of Los Angeles. The caravan carried woolen rugs and blankets produced in New Mexico to trade for horses and mules. Other trade parties soon followed. Some found alternative routes that together became known as the Old Spanish Trail. It took Armijo’s group about 12 weeks to reach California and six weeks to return on the trail historians LeRoy and Ann Hafen called, “the longest, crookedest, most arduous pack mule route in the history of America.” The lands crossed by the Old Spanish Trail were alluring. For decades missionaries, fur trappers, American Indians, and others ventured repeatedly into and across the vast territory between New Mexico and California. By the time Armijo started his trip, New Mexican traders were familiar with the routes others had followed and utilized the cumulative geographic knowledge gained from previous expeditions. The trips were arduous. Dramatically changing terrain and climate posed major challenges. Caravans lost their way, suffered from thirst, and were forced to eat some of their pack mules when supplies ran out. Animals also suffered in the harsh desert environment and endured severe weather. View of Santa Fe in 1846 by John W. Abert Commerce along the Old Spanish Trail began as a legitimate barter for horses and mules, but some traders and adventurers found it easier to steal livestock than to obtain it legally. Americans claiming to be beaver trappers, fugitive Indians from the missions, gentile Indians from the frontier, and renegade New Mexicans teamed together to gather horses and mules to take illegally back to New Mexico. In reaction to these widespread raids, California authorities tried to recapture the stock and punish the thieves but were never able to control the illicit trade. The line of march of this strange cavalcade occupied an extent of more than a mile...Near this motley crowd we sojourned for one night...Their pack-saddles and bales had been taken off and carefully piled, so as not only to protect them from damp, but to form a sort of barricade or fort for their owner. From one side to the other of these little corrals of goods a Mexican blanket was stretched, under which the trader lay smoking his cigarrito… Along the Old Spanish Trail sound animals, good packing equipment, and a capable crew were the prerequisites of a successful pack train. The success of the trip depended on the skills and abilities of those who packed and drove the animals that carried the merchandise. New Mexicans had a well-deserved reputation as excellent horsemen and muleteers. American eyewitnesses marveled at the dexterity and skill with which they harnessed and adjusted packs of merchandise. Experienced travelers suggested that New Mexicans should always be used as teamsters for they “can catch up and roll up in half the time the average person does.” Packers were always in demand and utilized a variety of skills. They secured loads with intricate knots, splices and hitches; they acted as veterinarians and blacksmiths. They estimated the safe carrying capacity of a mule, and identified and treated animals suffering from improperly balanced loads. They timed the travel day to stop at a meadow or creek bottom that provided good forage. Packers also had to be able to lift heavy loads, be good farriers, and “accomplish marvels with the axe and screw key and a young sapling for a lever.” Beasts of Burden Mules had incredible strength and endurance, fared better than horses where water was scarce and forage poor, and recovered more rapidly after periods of hardship. Their hard and small hoofs withstood the shock and abrasion of rocky, boulder-strewn terrain. Red Pass, California Detail, San Gabriel Mission, 1832, by Ferdinand Deppe Courtesy Sánta Barbara Mission Archive - Library Courtesy Palace of the Governors Photo Archives (NMHM/DCA), 155329 Witness Courtesy Laws Railroad Museum Ben Wittick, Palace of the Governors Photo Archives (NMHM/DCA), 015870 By this time Santa Fe is witnessing increased economic activity brought on by successful American and Mexican trade. Large quantities of manufactured products arrive in New Mexico from the eastern United States along the Santa Fe Trail. Many goods are also traveling along El Camino Real de Tierra Adentro to and from the interior of Mexico. In 1829, La Villa Real de Santa Fe de San Francisco de Asis, provincial capital of New Mexico, was just a dusty frontier town that sheltered a mix of Spanish colonial families, newer Mexican arrivals, displaced Indians, and a small, but growing number of Americans. Over 1,000 miles to the west, the Pueblo de la Reina de los Angeles was an even smaller ranch town. Consisting of little more than a church and plaza, and a few homes and government buildings, it was the largest Mexican community in an area characterized by dispersed ranche
Old Spanish Trail Old Spanish National Historic Trail / New Mexico, Arizona, Colorado, Utah, Nevada, California Official Map & Guide - Large Print National Park Service Bureau of Land Management Department of the Interior Official Map and Guide Formatted for ADA standards at 11” x 17” print size. hats, shawls, and quilts. . . . the longest, crookedest, most arduous By this time Santa Fe pack mule route in the is witnessing increased history of America. . . economic activity brought on by successful It is 1829, eight years American and Mexican after Mexico gained trade. Large quantities of independence from manufactured products Spain. New Mexican arrive in New Mexico traders travel overland from the eastern United to establish new States along the Santa commercial relations with frontier settlements Fe Trail. Many goods are also traveling along El in California. They Camino Real de Tierra carry locally produced merchandise to exchange Adentro to and from the interior of Mexico. for mules and horses. Items include serapes, Connecting Two blankets, ponchos, and Mexican Provinces socks; a variety of hides In 1829, La Villa Real de Santa Fe de San – gamuzas (chamois), Francisco de Asis, provincial capital of buffalo robes, bear and New Mexico, was just a dusty frontier town that sheltered a mix of Spanish colonial beaver skins; as well as families, newer Mexican arrivals, displaced Rev. 02/06/13 Indians, and a small, but growing number of Americans. Over 1,000 miles to the west, the Pueblo de la Reina de los Angeles was an even smaller ranch town. Consisting of little more than a church and plaza, and a few homes and government buildings, it was the largest Mexican community in an area characterized by dispersed ranches, decaying Spanish missions, and Indian villages. During the winter of 1829-1830, Antonio Armijo led a caravan of 60 men and 100 pack mules from New Mexico to Mission San Gabriel in California, east of Los Angeles. The caravan carried woolen rugs and blankets produced in New Mexico to trade for horses and mules. Other trade parties soon followed. Some found alternative routes that together became known as the Old Spanish Trail. It took Armijo’s group about 12 weeks to reach California and six weeks to return on the trail historians LeRoy and Ann Hafen called, “the longest, crookedest, most arduous pack mule route in the history of America.” Mules and Men The lands crossed by the Old Spanish Trail were alluring. For decades missionaries, fur trappers, American Indians, and others ventured repeatedly into and across the vast territory between New Mexico and California. By the time Armijo started his trip, New Mexican traders were familiar with the routes others had followed and utilized the cumulative geographic knowledge gained from previous expeditions. The trips were arduous. Dramatically changing terrain and climate posed major challenges. Caravans lost their way, suffered from thirst, and were forced to eat some of their pack mules when supplies ran out. Animals also suffered in the harsh desert environment and endured severe weather. Commerce along the Old Spanish Trail began as a legitimate barter for horses and mules, but some traders and adventurers found it easier to steal livestock than to obtain it legally. Americans claiming to be beaver trappers, fugitive Indians from the missions, gentile Indians from the frontier, and renegade New Mexicans teamed together to gather horses and mules to take illegally back to New Mexico. In reaction to these widespread raids, California authorities tried to recapture the stock and punish the thieves but were never able to control the illicit trade. The line of march of this strange cavalcade occupied an extent of more than a mile... Near this motley crowd we sojourned for one night...Their pack-saddles and bales had been taken off and carefully piled, so as not only to protect them from damp, but to form a sort of barricade or fort for their owner. From one side to the other of these little corrals of goods a Mexican blanket was stretched, under which the trader lay smoking his cigarrito… —Lieutenant George Brewerton, 1848 Packing the Train Along the Old Spanish Trail sound animals, good packing equipment, and a capable crew were the prerequisites of a successful pack train. The success of the trip depended on the skills and abilities of those who packed and drove the animals that carried the merchandise. New Mexicans had a well-deserved reputation as excellent horsemen and muleteers. American eyewitnesses marveled at the dexterity and skill with which they harnessed and adjusted packs of merchandise. Experienced travelers suggested that New Mexicans should always be used as teamsters for they “can catch up and roll up in half the time the average person does.” Packers were always in demand and utilized a variety of skills. They secured loads with intricate knots, splices and hitches; they acted as veterinarians and blacksmiths. They estima
National Trails System National Park Service U.S. Department of the Interior National Historic Trails Auto Tour Route Interpretive Guide The Mormon Pioneer Trail Across Iowa in 1846 Leaving Nauvoo and “Crossing the Mississippi on the Ice,” by C. A. Christensen Reconstructed Latter-day Saints Temple at Nauvoo, Illinois. NATIONAL HISTORIC TRAILS AUTO TOUR ROUTE INTERPRETIVE GUIDE The Mormon Pioneer Trail Across Iowa in 1846 Prepared by National Park Service National Trails Intermountain Region 324 South State Street, Suite 200 Salt Lake City, Utah 84111 Telephone: 801-741-1012 www.nps.gov/cali www.nps.gov/oreg www.nps.gov/poex www.nps.gov/mopi NATIONAL PARK SERVICE DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR April 2007 Second Printing September 2010 contents Introduction. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 A New Faith . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 Clash of Cultures . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 Exodus From Nauvoo. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7 Winter Retreat Across Iowa. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 Places to Pause, To Rest…To Die. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 A Far Reaching Impact. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 Sites and Points of Interest Nauvoo, Illinois to Council Bluffs, Iowa . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16 For More Information . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34 Credits. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34 Regional Map. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Inside Back Cover Auto Tour Route Interpretive Guide Iowa - Nebraska Introduction T he Mormon Pioneer National Historic Trail follows the route Auto Tour established by Brigham Young Route to bring his followers from Nauvoo, Illinois, to the Valley of the Great Salt Lake, where The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has been based for more than 160 years. That first migration of Latter-day Saints to the Great Basin occurred in two stages: in 1846, from western Illinois to the Missouri River in the area of today’s Council Bluffs, Iowa; and in 1847, from the Missouri River to Salt Lake City. This Auto Tour Route interpretive guide covers the 1846 segment of Mormon Trail from Illinois through Iowa. Because they have not been designated by Congress Auto Tour Route Interpretive Guide Iowa - Nebraska as part of the Mormon Pioneer National Historic Trail, routes and sites used by later Mormon wagon trains and handcart companies are not included in this guide. Individual Auto Tour Route interpretive guides such as this one are in preparation for each state through which the trail passes. As you follow the guide, watch for Auto Tour Route highway logos marking the general route of the Mormon Pioneer National Historic Trail. In addition, a National Park Service brochure with a map of the entire Mormon Pioneer National Historic Trail is available at many trail-related venues, and also can be requested from the trail’s administrative office at 324 South State Street, Suite 200, Salt Lake City, Utah. Historic Nauvoo, pioneer wagon ruts, emigrant camps, and other places of interest along or near the trail corridor are listed within this guide. Driving directions are also provided. Entrance and parking fees may be charged at some locations; hours may vary at the discretion of the managers —you may want to call ahead. Large groups are encouraged to make prior arrangements for tours, where available. 2 Auto Tour Route Interpretive Guide Iowa - Nebraska A New Faith M ormons, as Latter-day Saints are popularly called, practice a unique religion that arose in 1830 from the teachings of church founder Joseph Smith, Jr. Early converts to the new faith followed their prophet from New York to Ohio, Missouri, and Illinois through the 1830s and ’40s. They were driven from each state by threats and violence. The reasons for the Latter-day Saints’ early troubles still are debated, but religious, political, economic, and social practices all were at issue. Because Mormon beliefs about God and family differed in important ways from mainstream Christianity, they drew criticism and scorn. Because the Latter-day Saints created their own separate towns, religion-based governments, and security forces, their neighbors became uneasy and fearful. Resentment grew as the church became involved in local, state, and eventually, national politics. Disagreements led to legal battles and, in cases, violence
National Trails System Office Intermountain Region National Park Service U.S. Department of the Interior National Historic Trails Interpretive Auto Tour Western Missouri Through Northeastern Kansas “Westport Landing” — by William Henry Jackson Courtesy—William Henry Jackson Collection at Scotts Bluff National Monument . R Driving directions to the sites are provided from major highways and nearby towns. To follow overland trail routes between sites, follow the Auto Tour Route highway signs. Generally, local brochures and guides are also available. Entrance and parking fees may be charged at some locations, and hours may vary at the discretion of site administrators. Large groups are encouraged to make prior arrangements for tours, where tours are available. Please respect private property by staying in public areas, and help protect our national heritage by leaving trail resources undisturbed. National Trails System Office 324 South State Street, Suite 200 P.O. Box 45155 Salt Lake City, UT 84145-0155 Auto Tour Route oadside Auto Tour Route signs mark the general routes of the Oregon, California, and Pony Express national historic trails through western Missouri and northeast Kansas. Actual wagon wheel ruts, emigrant camps, Pony Express stations, and other places of interest can be visited at the sites listed in this guide. Interpretive Auto Tour Western Missouri - Northeast Kansas ACROSS THE WIDE MISSOURI ON THEIR OWN T N he story of the American West is not simply a tale of pioneer courage and vision—of prairie schooners swaying westward to the strains of heroic music. Rather, it is a complex weave of plots and subplots, of romance and religion, of politics and money, and of personal and national tragedy. Traces of the people, livestock, and wooden wheels that were part of those stories can still be found on the landscape. There are traces, too, of native peoples whose lives were changed by emigration. This guide will provide descriptions of the historic places where wagon wheels cut into soft stream banks and over rolling prairie, where lonely trailside graves lie, where missionary outposts were established for Native Americans, and where Pony Express stations were, and more. Pioneers gathered to prepare for their journey at Independence and St. Joseph, Missouri. From there, they would embark across the wide and muddy Missouri River into a strange, windswept land of unfamiliar wonders—and dangers. ot fit for farming, too windswept and exposed to attract homesteaders, the “Great American Desert” that unrolled west of the Missouri River was seen as landscape to be crossed on the way to a better place. That crossing, travelers of the mid-19th century knew, was, by turn, exhausting and exhilarating, and tedious and terrifying. Emigrants’ excitement and anxiety mounted as they prepared to launch their ox-drawn prairie schooners from St. Joseph and Independence, Missouri, bustling river ports at the frontier’s edge. To them, the great, gray ribbon of the Missouri was the western shore of civilized society. Once their wagons rolled off the ferry onto the Kansas side, emigrants embarked into unfamiliar country—trespassers on Indian lands, and beyond the protection of the government. On the trail, there were no markets, no hospitals, no laws, and no second chances. From there until they reached trail’s end some 2,000 miles later, the pioneer emigrants were on their own. Here we were, without law, without order, and without restraint; in a state of nature, amid the confused, revolving fragments of elementary society! Some were sad, while others were merry; and while the brave doubted, the timid trembled! —Lansford W. Hastings, . . . . I, like every other pioneer, love to live over again, in memory those romantic months, and revisit, in fancy, the scenes of the journey. —Catherine Haun, —California emigration of 1849 In the winter of 18 and 46 our neighbor got hold of Fremont’s History of California and . . . . brought the book to my husband to read, & he was carried away with the idea [of emigrating] too. I said O let us not go! —Mary Jones, —California emigration of 1846 Interpretive Auto Tour Western Missouri - Northeast Kansas DANGER, DEATH, AND DISAPPOINTMENT M ost emigrants lived in fear of Indian attack. Rumors of—even hoaxes about—trailside massacres drifted back to Eastern newspapers, and many travelers packed a virtual arsenal to protect themselves on the road. For the most part, though, their fears were unfounded. Historians conclude that more Indian people than emigrants were killed in clashes along the Oregon and California trails. A more serious threat to those gathering at the congested jumping-off places along the Missouri River was a mysterious killer that could neither be seen nor fought: cholera. In the mid-19th century, no one realized that this virulent and painful intestinal infection was caused by bacteria. Spread unknowingly from waterhole to waterhole by sick travel
National Trails System National Park Service U.S. Department of the Interior National Historic Trails Auto Tour Route Interpretive Guide Nebraska and Northeastern Colorado “Approaching Chimney Rock” By William Henry Jackson Chimney Rock, in western Nebraska, was one of the most notable landmarks recorded in emigrant diaries and journals. Photograph is courtesy of The Wagner Perspective. NATIONAL HISTORIC TRAILS AUTO TOUR ROUTE INTERPRETIVE GUIDE Nebraska and Northeastern Colorado Prepared by National Park Service National Trails System—Intermountain Region 324 South State Street, Suite 200 Box 30 Salt Lake City, Utah 84111 Telephone: 801-741-1012 www.nps.gov/cali www.nps.gov/oreg www.nps.gov/mopi www.nps.gov/poex NATIONAL PARK SERVICE DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR August 2006 Contents Introduction • • • • • • • 1 The Great Platte River Road • • • • • • • From Path to Highway • • • • • • • “A Whiz and a Hail” — The Pony Express • • • • • A “Frayed Rope” • • • • • • • The Platte Experience • • • • • • • Natives and Newcomers: A Gathering Storm • • • • • • • War on the Oregon & California Trails • • • • • • • Corridor to Destiny • • • • • • • 2 4 8 11 15 18 21 24 SITES AND POINTS OF INTEREST • • • • • • • Auto Tour Segment A: Odell to Kearney • • • • • • • Auto Tour Segment B: Omaha-Central City-Kearney • • • • • • Auto Tour Segment C: Nebraska City-Central City-Kearney • • • • • • • Auto Tour Segment D: Kearney to Wyoming Border • • • • • • • 25 For More Information • • • • • • • 61 Regional Map • • • • • • • 26 35 41 43 inside the back cover Auto Tour Route Interpretive Guide Nebraska Introduction M any of the pioneer trails and other historic routes that are important in our nation’s past have been designated by Congress as National Historic Trails. While Auto Tour most of those old roads and routes are Route not open to motorized traffic, people can drive along modern highways that lie close to the original trails. Those modern roads are designated as Auto Tour Routes, and they are marked with highway signs and trail logos to help today’s travelers follow the trails used by the pioneers who helped to open a new nation. This interpretive publication guides visitors along the Auto Tour Routes for the Oregon, California, Mormon Pioneer, and Pony Express National Historic Trails as they approach and parallel the Platte River across Nebraska and cut across the northeastern corner of Colorado. Siteby-site driving directions are included, and an overview map is located inside the back cover. To make the tour more meaningful, this guide also provides an historical overview of the four trails, shares the thoughts and experiences of emigrants who followed those routes, and describes how the westward expansion impacted native peoples of the Great Plains. Individual Auto Tour Route interpretive guides such as this one are in preparation for each state through which the trails pass. In addition, individual National Park Service interpretive brochures for the Oregon, California, Mormon Pioneer, and Pony Express National Historic Trails are available at many trail-related venues, and can be requested from the National Trails System Office at 324 South State, Suite 200, Box 30, Salt Lake City, Utah 84111. These brochures provide more detailed information about each of the trails. Additional information on each trail also can be found on individual trail web sites. Links are listed on the title page of this guide. 1 Auto Tour Route Interpretive Guide Nebraska The Great Platte River Road “Too thick to drink, too thin to plow, too pale to paint.” “A mile wide and an inch deep.” “A stream flowing upside down.” C overed wagon pioneers of the 19th century liked to joke about Nebraska’s Platte River, a stream unlike any they had known back East. But the Platte, strange as it looked, was no joke. A summer shower could send it raging over-bank and through camp; its soft quicksand bottom could swallow up an ox team. River crossings were ordeals to dread. The river’s setting, too, seemed strange. Surrounding prairie, frequently cleansed by wildfire, was burned bare of trees right up to the water’s edge, and a line of low sand hills, looking like a storm-wracked beach, rimmed much of the river valley. Yet the yellow Platte, that treeless “Coast of Nebraska,” was an emigrant’s lifeline—a water source that snaked 800 dusty miles between the Missouri River and the uplands of central Wyoming. Though a choked and sandy disappointment of a stream, the Platte always was and still is a natural east-west corridor across the central plains. Migrating game and moccasin-clad feet wore paths through the “Fort Kearny & the South Platte River” by William Henry Jackson. 2 Auto Tour Route Interpretive Guide Nebraska valley thousands of years before any white man ventured there. Like those first travelers, covered wagon emigrants and their slow, plodding oxen found water, grass, and fuel
National Trails System National Park Service U.S. Department of the Interior National Historic Trails Auto Tour Route Interpretive Guide Along the Snake River Plain Through Idaho “Three Island Crossing” by William Henry Jackson “Great Falls” on the Snake River. Courtesy of Library of Congress. NATIONAL HISTORIC TRAILS AUTO TOUR ROUTE INTERPRETIVE GUIDE The Tangle of Trails Through Idaho Prepared by National Park Service National Trails System—Intermountain Region 324 South State Street, Suite 200 Salt Lake City, Utah 84111 Telephone: 801-741-1012 www.nps.gov/cali www.nps.gov/oreg www.nps.gov/poex www.nps.gov/mopi NATIONAL PARK SERVICE DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR October 2008 Contents Introduction• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 1 THE DESERT WEST• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 2 THE SNAKE COUNTRY • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 4 FINDING THE WAY • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 7 WYOMING TO FORT HALL• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 11 THE RAFT RIVER PARTING OF THE WAYS• • • • • • • • • • 20 ON TO OREGON• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 22 ‘O FOR MORE PATIENCE’: A SNAKE RIVER SOJOURN • • 29 ‘DEATH OR THE DIGGINS’• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 32 ‘OUTRAGES HAVE BEEN COMMITTED’• • • • • • • • • • • 35 YESTERDAY AND TODAY• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 41 SITES AND POINTS OF INTEREST• • • • • • • • • • • • • 42 AUTO TOUR SEGMENT A: WYOMING TO OREGON ON THE SNAKE RIVER ROUTE OF THE OREGON TRAIL • • • • 45 AUTO TOUR SEGMENT B: THE SOUTH ALTERNATE OREGON TRAIL ROUTE, GLENNS FERRY TO OREGON STATE LINE • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 78 FOR MORE INFORMATION: • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 82 Credits: • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 82 Auto Tour Route Interpretive Guide Idaho Introduction M any of the pioneer trails and other historic routes that are important in our nation’s past have been designated by Congress as National Auto Tour Historic Trails. While most of the old roads and routes still in existance are not open to motorized Route traffic, people can drive along modern highways that closely parallel the original trails. Those modern roads are designated as Auto Tour Routes, and they are marked with highway signs and trail logos to help today’s travelers follow the trails used by the pioneers who helped to open the American West. This interpretive publication guides visitors along the Auto Tour Routes for the Oregon and California National Historic Trails across Idaho. Site-by-site driving directions are included, and an overview map is located inside the back cover. To make the tour more meaningful, this guide also provides a historical overview of the two trails, shares the thoughts and experiences of emigrants who followed these routes, and discusses how the westward expansion impacted native peoples of Idaho. Individual Auto Tour Route interpretive guides such as this one are in preparation for each state through which the trails pass. In addition, individual National Park Service brochures for the Oregon and California National Historic Trails are available at many trail-related venues, and also can be requested from the National Trails System administrative office at 324 South State Street, Suite 200, Salt Lake City, Utah 84111. Each brochure includes a map of the entire trail and an overview of trail history. Additional information about each trail also can be found on individual trail web sites. Links are listed on the “For More Information” page of this guide. Auto Tour Route Interpretive Guide Idaho THE DESERT WEST A s covered-wagon emigrants crossed today’s Idaho, they found the romance of the road wearing as thin as the soles of their trailtorn shoes. The pioneers’ initial energy and excitement curdled into fatigue and crankiness after three or more months on the road. Nightly fireside dances got left behind back down the trail, next to Grandpa’s clock, Mother’s good china, and heaps of souring bacon. Highjinks and horse races grew rare, quarrels more frequent. Journal-keepers, when they “Freighters Grub Pile,” by William mustered the energy to write at all, Henry Jackson. Courtesy of Library of generally jotted terse complaints Congress. about fellow travelers, Indians, heat, exhaustion, dust, mosquitoes, aches and pains, and the “stink” of the never-ending sagebrush. It seems the nearer we approach Oregon the worse roads we have, and a worse more rough looking country. —Amelia Hadley, 1851 Oregon emigration Felt today like giving up in despair, the intolerable heat and dust, together with fatigue makes me almost sick at heart. —Esther Belle Hanna, 1852 California emigration [Men] are by turns, or all together, cross, peevish, sullen, boisterous, giddy, profane, dirty, vulgar, ragged, mustachioed, bewhiskered, idle, petulant, quarrelsome, unfaithful, disobedient, refractory, careless,
National Trails System National Park Service U.S. Department of the Interior National Historic Trails Auto Tour Route Interpretive Guide Across Wyoming “Rendezvous,” by William Henry Jackson NATIONAL HISTORIC TRAILS AUTO TOUR ROUTE INTERPRETIVE GUIDE Across Wyoming Prepared by National Park Service National Trails Intermountain Region www.nps.gov/cali www.nps.gov/oreg www.nps.gov/mopi www.nps.gov/poex NATIONAL PARK SERVICE US DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Third Printing December 2016 Historical marker on South Pass recognizing the first “white” women to make the trek to Oregon in 1836. CONTENTS Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 Gateway to the West . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 Blazing the Trail . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 Approaching the Rockies. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7 Sweetwater to South Pass . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13 Beyond the Great Divide . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18 Leapfrogging Across Wyoming . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23 Ho for California! Oregon or Bust! . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27 Fire on the Plains . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30 God Speed to the Boy & the Pony! . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34 The End of the Trail Era . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 36 Sites and Points of Interest. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .37 Auto Tour Segment A —Nebraska State Line to Casper . . . . . . . Auto Tour Segment B —Casper to Seedskadee . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Auto Tour Segment C —The Lander Road. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Auto Tour Segment D —Seedskadee to Idaho State Line. . . . . . . Auto Tour Segment E —Seedskadee to Utah State Line. . . . . . . . 38 50 68 70 71 For More Information/Credits . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 74 Regional Map. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Inside Back Cover Eastern view of the Sweetwater River Valley from atop Independence Rock, by William Henry Jackson. Image is courtesy of the Brigham Young University Online Collection. Auto Tour Route Interpretive Guide Wyoming INTRODUCTION Auto Tour Route any of the pioneer trails and other M historic routes that are important in our nation’s past have been designated by Congress as national historic trails. While most of those old roads and routes are not open to motorized traffic, people can drive along modern highways that lie close to the original trails. Those modern roads are designated as Auto Tour Routes, and are marked with highway signs and trail logos to help today’s travelers follow the trails used by the pioneers who helped to open a new nation. This interpretive publication guides visitors along the Auto Tour Routes for the Oregon, California, Mormon Pioneer, and Pony Express national historic trails as they as they cross the state of Wyoming from east to west. Site-by-site driving directions are included, and an overview map is located inside the back cover. To make the tour more meaningful, this guide also provides a historical overview of the four trails, shares the thoughts and experiences of emigrants who followed those routes, and describes how westward expansion impacted native peoples of the Intermountain West. National Park Service interpretive brochures for the Oregon, California, Mormon Pioneer, and Pony Express national historic trails are available at many trail-related venues, or can be requested via email to ntir_information@nps.gov. Additional information on each trail also can be found on individual trail websites. Links are listed on the title page of this guide. Auto Tour Route Interpretive Guide Wyoming GATEWAY TO THE WEST History is geography set into motion. —Johann Gottfried Herder, 18th century philosopher of history T he Rocky Mountains stretch like a jagged spine between Alaska and Mexico, splitting North America into East and West. The Continental Divide is not a simple line of peaks, easily threaded by tracks and roads, but a complex of overlapping mountain ranges and treeless sagebrush steppe, hundreds of miles wide. In the days of covered wagon travel, the Rockies were an imposing barrier to the movement of people, commerce, and communications. Early explorers probed the Northern Rockies looking for the fabled “Northwest Passage” that would open an easy route for transcontinental traffic. The men of Lewis and Clark’s Cor
National Trails System National Park Service U.S. Department of the Interior National Historic Trails Auto Tour Route Interpretive Guide Utah — Crossroads of the West “Wagons Through Echo Canyon,” by William Henry Jackson Pony Express Bible photograph is courtesy of Joe Nardone, — Pony Express History Association. Every Pony Express rider working for Russell, Majors, and Waddell, was issued a personal Bible to carry with them and obliged to pledge this oath: “I, [name of rider] - do hereby swear before the great and living God that during my engagement and while I am an employee of Russell, Majors, and Waddell, I will under no circumstances use profane language, I will drink no intoxicating liquors; that I will not quarrel or fight with any other employee of the firm and that in every respect I will I conduct myself honestly, faithful to my duties, and so direct my acts, as to win the confidence of my employers, So help me God.” NATIONAL HISTORIC TRAILS AUTO TOUR ROUTE INTERPRETIVE GUIDE Utah — Crossroads of the West Prepared by National Park Service National Trails—Intermountain Region 324 South State Street, Suite 200 Salt Lake City, Utah 84111 Telephone: 801-741-1012 www.nps.gov/cali www.nps.gov/oreg www.nps.gov/poex www.nps.gov/mopi NATIONAL PARK SERVICE DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR September 2010 Contents INTRODUCTION • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 1 A NOTE ON STATE BOUNDARIES • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 2 THE BIG EMPTY • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 3 SAGEBRUSH AND SALT FLATS • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 4 FIRST WAGONS INTO UTAH • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 7 ‘A NIGHER ROUTE’: The Hastings Cutoff • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 11 ‘THIS IS THE PLACE’: The Mormon Pioneers • • • • • • • • • • • • •18 A HALF-WAY HOUSE ON THE CALIFORNIA TRAIL • • • • • • • • • 28 THE UTAH WAR • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 34 ‘THE FORLORNEST SPOT’: The Pony Express Trail in Utah • • • 36 THE WARPATH • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 43 CROSSROADS OF THE WEST• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 47 SITES AND POINTS OF INTEREST • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 49 AUTO TOUR SEGMENT A: Wyoming Border To Salt Lake City, Utah — (Hastings Cutoff Of The California, Mormon Pioneer, and Pony Express Trails) • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 49 OPTIONAL BACKCOUNTRY ROUTE: East Canyon/Little Emigration Canyon • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 65 SALT LAKE CITY PIONEER TOUR • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 77 AUTO TOUR SEGMENT B: Salt Lake City To West Wendover, NV • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 90 OPTIONAL BACKCOUNTRY ROUTE: Skull Valley and Hastings Pass • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 95 AUTO TOUR SEGMENT C: Salt Lake City To City Of Rocks NR, ID (Salt Lake Cutoff of the California Trail) • • • • • • • • • • 105 AUTO TOUR SEGMENT D: Pony Express Trail National Back Country Byway • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 110 For More Information • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 122 Credits • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 122 Auto Tour Route Interpretive Guide Utah INTRODUCTION M any of the pioneer trails and other historic routes that are important in our nation’s past have been designated by Congress as National Historic Trails. While most of the trail ruts still in existence are not open to motorized traffic, people can drive along modern highways that either overlie the original route or closely parallel it. Those modern roads are designated as Auto Tour Routes, and they are marked with highway signs and trail logos to help today’s travelers follow the routes used by the pioneers who helped to open the American West. This interpretive publication guides visitors along the Auto Tour Routes for the California, Mormon Pioneer, and Pony Express National Historic Trails across Utah. Site-by-site driving directions are included, and an overview map is located inside the back cover. To make the tour more meaningful, this guide also provides a historical overview of the three trails, shares the thoughts and experiences of emigrants who followed these routes, and discusses how the westward expansion impacted the native peoples of what is now Utah. Individual Auto Tour Route interpretive guides such as this one are in preparation for each state through which the trails pass. In addition, individual National Park Service brochures for the California, Mormon Pioneer, and Pony Express National Historic Trails are available at many trail-related venues, and also can be requested from the National Trails System administrative office at 324 South State Street, Suite 200, Salt Lake City, Utah 84111. Each brochure includes a map of the entire trail and a general overview of
National Trails Intermountain Region National Park Service U.S. Department of the Interior National Historic Trails Auto Tour Route Interpretive Guide Across Nevada California National Historic Trail Pony Express National Historic Trail By the time they reached the Humboldt Sink, or Forty-mile Desert, many emigrant pioneers had little food, exhausted livestock, and broken wagons. [Cover photo] Forty-mile Desert NATIONAL HISTORIC TRAILS AUTO TOUR ROUTE INTERPRETIVE GUIDE Across Nevada on the Humboldt Route and The Central Route of the Pony Express Prepared by National Park Service National Trails Intermountain Region www.nps.gov/cali www.nps.gov/oreg www.nps.gov/poex www.nps.gov/mopi NATIONAL PARK SERVICE U. S. DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR April 2012 Table of Contents ‘MOST CORDIALLY I HATE YOU’: THE HUMBOLDT RIVER •••••••••••••••••••• 2 THE GREAT BASIN •••••••••••••••••••• 4 SEEKING MARY’S RIVER •••••••••••••••••••• 5 APPROACHING THE HUMBOLDT • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 11 PRELUDE TO MURDER • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 15 THE HUMBOLDT EXPERIENCE • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 18 WEST TO STONY POINT • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 21 THE POLITICS OF HUNGER • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 24 A FLASH OF THE BLADE • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 27 ‘HEARTILY TIRED OF THE JOURNEY’ • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 29 THE HUMBOLDT SINK • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 33 THE Forty-mile DESERT; or, HOW TO KILL AN OX • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 35 INTO THE SIERRA NEVADA • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 42 THE PONY BOYS • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 44 CHANGE IN THE GREAT BASIN • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 51 Sites & Points of Interest: Setting Out • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 53 Navigating the California Trail Across Nevada • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 54 Tips for Trailing Across Nevada • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 56 AUTO TOUR SEGMENT A: WEST WENDOVER AND JACKPOT, NEVADA, TO CALIFORNIA (California Trail) • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 58 AUTO TOUR SEGMENT B: BLACK ROCK DESERT, RYE PATCH RESERVOIR TO GERLACH, NEVADA (Applegate and Nobles Trails) • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 77 AUTO TOUR SEGMENT C: WEST WENDOVER, NEVADA TO CALIFORNIA BORDER (Pony Express Trail and Carson and Walker River-Sonora Routes of the California Trail) FOR MORE INFORMATION: • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 86 • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • 102 Introduction M any of the pioneer trails and other historic routes that are important in our nation’s past have been designated by Congress as national historic trails. While most of those old wagon roads and routes are not open to motorized traffic, visitors can drive along modern highways that either retrace the original route or closely parallel it. Those modern roads are designated as Auto Tour Routes. They are marked with “National Historic Trails” highway signs to help today’s travelers follow the routes used by the pioneers who helped to open the American West. This interpretive publication guides visitors along the Auto Tour Routes for the California and Pony Express national historic trails as they cross the state of Nevada from east to west. Site-by-site driving directions are included, and an overview map is located inside the back cover. To make the tour more meaningful, this guide also provides a historical overview of the two trails, shares the thoughts and experiences of emigrants who trekked to California, and discusses how the westward expansion impacted native peoples of what is now Nevada. Individual Auto Tour Route interpretive guides such as this one are in preparation for each state that the Oregon, California, Mormon Pioneer, and Pony Express trails pass through. In addition, individual National Park Service brochures for the four national historic trails are available at many trail-related venues and can be requested from the National Trails Intermountain Region Salt Lake City Branch Office at ntsl_interpretation@nps.gov. Each brochure includes a color map of the entire trail and provides an overview of information about each of the trails. Additional information can also can be found on individual trail websites. For links see page 102. Auto Tour Route Interpretive Guide Nevada ‘MOST CORDIALLY I HATE YOU’: THE HUMBOLDT RIVER T he four great rivers that led covered wagon pioneers into the far West each had a personality all its own. There was the gritty prairie Platte, cantankerous but dependable; the brooding, basalt-shrouded Snake, menacing as a stranger with a hostile stare; and the broad-shouldered Columbia, the Big River of the West, confident and athletic, striding purposefully toward the Pacific Ocean. But the Humboldt. The Humboldt was sullen and spiteful, a mocking mean joker that lured emigrants deep into the desert, swindle

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