“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Bessemer Bend in Natrona County, Wyoming — The American West (Mountains)

Lure of the West

Lure of the West Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, June 1, 2016
1. Lure of the West Marker
Inscription. The eighteenth century brought competition among Spain, France, England and the fledgling Unites States for control of North America. Domain over the continent's rivers, seaports, forests, rich soils, and wildlife resources was key to the growth of the nation as a strong, stable empire. Settlements and governance of the land to exclude other nations from the trans-Mississippi West became the American agenda.
A network of trails leading west from the Mississippi River was created by trappers, explorers, Oregon settlers, Mormon Pioneers, and California gold seekers during the first half of the nineteenth century. By 1860, the Pony Express utilized existing stagecoach routes and stations between Missouri and California to maintain rapid overland communications between west and east.
In roughly fifty years, the frontier had moved fro the Mississippi River valley to the Pacific Ocean. The trail on which you stand now was the conduit for Westward Expansion.
Today we can visit sites across Wyoming and imagine the creaking wooden wheels, the bell on the milk cow, and the dust, sweat and exhaustion felt by emigrants as they passed this way on foot. Their strength came from dreams as the were bound for the West and a place to help shape the future of their continental nation.
Erected by
Lure of the West Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, June 1, 2016
2. Lure of the West Marker
The marker is on the left.
U.S. Department of the Interior, Bureau of Land Management.
Marker series. This marker is included in the Oregon Trail marker series.
Location. 42° 39.615′ N, 106° 48.618′ W. Marker is near Bessemer Bend, Wyoming, in Natrona County. Marker is on Oregon Trail Road (County Route 319) near County Route 308, on the right when traveling south. Click for map. Marker is in this post office area: Casper WY 82604, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 13 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. And On the Horizon... (a few steps from this marker); Marking Their Progress (within shouting distance of this marker); A Look Back (within shouting distance of this marker); Willow Springs (approx. 1.3 miles away); Alcova Reservoir (approx. 7.5 miles away); Pathfinder Dam Construction (approx. 8 miles away); Fremont Canyon Power Plant (approx. 13.1 miles away); Fremont Canyon (approx. 13.1 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Bessemer Bend.
More about this marker. This marker is located at Ryan (Prospect) Hill BLM Interpretive Site. The Site is about 13 miles southwest of Casper. From the town of Mills, take Poison Spider Road to county road 319. or from Bessemer Bend take county road 308. Note that CR 308 turns right where CR 314 continues straight. Alternatively, near Alcova, take the Oregon Trail Road (CR319) north from Wyoming Highway 220 for about 8 miles.
Categories. Roads & VehiclesSettlements & Settlers
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California. This page has been viewed 87 times since then. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on , by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California. This page was last revised on July 3, 2016.
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