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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Green River in Sweetwater County, Wyoming — The American West (Mountains)
 

Powell - Colorado River Expedition 1869

 
 
Powell - Colorado River Expedition 1869 Marker, front image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, September 10, 2015
1. Powell - Colorado River Expedition 1869 Marker, front
The plaque at the base reads:
Expedition Island
has been designated a
Registered National
Historic Landmark
under the provisions of the Historic Sites Act of August 21, 1955 this site possesses exceptional value in commemorating or illustrating the history of the United States
U.S. Department of the Interior
National Park Service
1969
Inscription. On May 24, 1869, the Powell - Colorado River Expedition, ten men and four boats strong, embarked from these environs on a voyage of adventure resulting in civilization's first definite knowledge of this continent's last unexplored major river drainage. Out of the still shaded, but no longer unknown, depths of that river's Grand Canyon came, 98 days later, six tattered river veterans to triumphantly beach two water-worn and rock-mauled hulks.
This adventure, no odyssey if measured by elapsed time alone, easily qualifies by the other standards of suspense, danger and action. Its successful completion captured and held the admiration of a nation.
John Wesley Powell himself -- cast in the hero's role and endowed with rare executive and scientific talents -- rode the crest of national acclaim into public service and the highest councils of the republic. Over the years his ever-sharpening executive ability resulted in the creation and productiveness of important federal agencies, while his scientific genius contributed to the advancement of such divergent disciplines as ethnology, geology and agronomy. Perhaps his greatest gift to the nation, conceived during Colorado River explorations, was the theory of arid-land culture, as developed, through his success in fathering the Bureau of Reclamation. This theory has changed the
Powell - Colorado River Expedition 1869 Marker, back image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, September 10, 2015
2. Powell - Colorado River Expedition 1869 Marker, back
face of western landscapes and caused extensive geographic regions to blossom and thrive.
 
Location. 41° 31.431′ N, 109° 28.341′ W. Marker is in Green River, Wyoming, in Sweetwater County. Marker can be reached from South 2nd East Street near East 4th South Street, on the right when traveling south. Click for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 398 South 2nd East Street, Green River WY 82935, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Sunbeam - 1908 (a few steps from this marker); Nathaniel Galloway - 1890's (a few steps from this marker); George Flavell (a few steps from this marker); The Paddlewheeler Comet - 1908 (a few steps from this marker); Julius Stone (within shouting distance of this marker); Kolb Brothers (within shouting distance of this marker); John Wesley Powell, 1871 (within shouting distance of this marker); The Damsite Surveys (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line). Click for a list of all markers in Green River.
 
More about this marker. This monument is located near the northwestern end of Island Park. Island Park occupies the northwestern portion of Expedition Island and is across the bridge at the south end of South 2nd East Street.
 
Also see . . .
Powell - Colorado River Expedition 1869 Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, September 10, 2015
3. Powell - Colorado River Expedition 1869 Marker

1. John Wesley Powell - New World Encyclopedia. Powell ...earned fame through his Powell Geographic Expedition, a three-month river trip down the Green and Colorado rivers in 1869, which included the first known passage through the Grand Canyon. Powell published scientific accounts of his expeditions, as well as advancing proposals for land utilization and irrigation projects in the areas he studied. He also published his work on classifying Native American languages. (Submitted on November 4, 2015, by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California.) 

2. John Wesley Powell - Wikipedia. At an 1883 irrigation conference, Powell would prophetically remark: "Gentlemen, you are piling up a heritage of conflict and litigation over water rights, for there is not sufficient water to supply the land."[19] Powell's recommendations for development of the West were largely ignored until after the Dust Bowl of the 1920s and 1930s, resulting in untold suffering associated with pioneer subsistence farms that failed due to insufficient rain. (Submitted on November 4, 2015, by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California.) 

3. The Powell Expedition -Grand Canyon Explorer. Powell had four boats specially built for the trip in Chicago and had them transported to Green River by way of the Union Pacific Railroad.
John Wesley Powell, right image. Click for full size.
By National Park Service, 1871
4. John Wesley Powell, right
From Powell's second expedition.
Three of the boats were constructed of oak, "stanch and firm" as Powell would say. They were constructed such that each had three separate compartments, with the fore and aft compartments being sealed so as to make them watertight.
(Submitted on November 4, 2015, by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California.) 

4. Man Who Mapped Grand Canyon Thankful For Long Underwear - Symon Sez. On this date in history: July 8, 1869 Powell spied what looked to be a good foothold. It may have been a good foothold but it was a bad move because the Major found himself trapped.... Powell shouted to Bradley that the muscles in his legs were starting to “tremble.” In his diary, Powell wrote that, “If I lose my hold, I shall fall to the bottom.” ... George Bradley suddenly was inspired. He took off his pants and then his long underwear. Bradley dangled the undergarment over the edge. It was probably the only time in John Wesley Powell’s life that he was happy to see a man’s underwear dangling in his face.... In a leap of desparation, Powell let go of the rock he was grasping to reach out for the longjohns. The underwear held... (Submitted on November 4, 2015, by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California.) 
 
Categories. ExplorationWaterways & Vessels
 
Green River Canyon, the Canyon of Desolation image. Click for full size.
By National Park Service, 1871
5. Green River Canyon, the Canyon of Desolation
From Powell's second expedition.
The boats in the Grand Canyon image. Click for full size.
By Unknown, 1871
6. The boats in the Grand Canyon
This photo, from Powell's second expedition, is an anaglyph created from the left and right images of an original stereo card. If you have a pair of blue and red filter 3D glasses have fun.
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California. This page has been viewed 174 times since then and 26 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on , by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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