Wednesday, May 20, 2015
Wednesday, May 13, 2015
Wednesday, May 6, 2015
Wednesday, April 29, 2015
The Oregon Trail -- Part 5
First named by fur traders who were camped in the area on July 4, 1824, Independence Rock had a special significance for pioneers on the Oregon Trail. They knew that if they hadn't reached this milestone by Independence Day, they risked being caught in snowstorms before they reached their destination.
As was the case with Register Cliffs further east in Wyoming, Independence Rock was a place for emigrants to carve their names and leave messages. Unlike Register Cliff, which is composed of softer stone that made inscriptions relatively easy, the granite of Independence Rock meant pioneers had a harder time inscribing anything on it.
Although difficult to read, this sign provides more information about what a Jesuit missionary called "The Great Record of the Desert."
Wednesday, April 22, 2015
The Oregon Trail -- Part 4
Believe it or not, each handcart was designed to hold all the possessions of a family of five.
While the contents of many handcarts were simply covered with a blanket, others resembled Conestoga wagons and had canvas tops.
Wednesday, April 15, 2015
The Oregon Trail -- Part 3
Have you ever heard of Devil's Gate? If you were a pioneer on the Oregon Trail, you would have. This Sweetwater River gorge was considered one of the major landmarks along the way. Although wagons could not traverse the narrow pass, the emigrants found the area with its forage for livestock and wood for fuel a good place to camp.
Wednesday, April 8, 2015
The Oregon Trail -- Part 2
At first glance, it may not look as if this is challenging terrain, but consider some of the hazards along the way.