“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Salt Lake City in Salt Lake County, Utah — The American Mountains (Southwest)

Sesquicentennial Mormon Trail Wagontrain

Sesquicentennial Mormon Trail Wagontrain Marker image. Click for full size.
By Dawn Bowen, June 18, 2007
1. Sesquicentennial Mormon Trail Wagontrain Marker
Inscription. (150 Years). Winter Quarters, Nebraska to the Valley of the Great Salt Lake, April 21, 1997 to July 22, 1997.

On a cold rainy morning in April 1997, modern day pioneers left Florence, Nebraska, the old winter quarters, to re-enact the migration of Mormon Saints 150 years earlier. ten thousand participants would take part along the trail, from the banks of the Missouri river to the valley of the great salt lake. the journey of wagons, handcarts, outriders and walkers would take three months and traverse over one thousand miles. the trek was a commemoration of sacrifices, joys and was a testament to the honor and greatness of those who went before. upon arriving in the valley, a glorious welcome awaited, as 50,000 emotional well wishers at the trailís end overcame the participants.

Participants and volunteers alike came to feel the spirits of their ancestors and to know, even for one day, the spirit of the Mormon Trail. Many heartfelt thoughts like the following were expressed: I felt a real pull to be out here. I don't know why, but I'm supposed to be here. I know that for sure. our lives were orchestrated in such a way as to get us here. it was exhilarating, quiet, powerful and gentle. For the veil was thin and they did travel by our sides; for we felt them daily. it was a memorial to our ancestors, a daily,
Marker in the park image. Click for full size.
By Dawn Bowen, June 18, 2007
2. Marker in the park
daylong journey into the past, and because of it, our lives were forever changed.

An apostolic blessing was given. in part, it stated: we ask thee father to reach down from thy throne above and bless each and every man, woman, and child that they may have comfort and peace come to them. This is a very important enterprise, a very important undertaking where a statement is made throughout the entire world. We ask thee to bless the animals that they may be strengthened. That they may, from the water they receive and the hay they partake of, be strong and able. that they may fulfill their responsibilities on this trek. We pray for those that are walking, that their limbs will be strong, that their hearts will be strong, that their limbs will have the capacity to carry them safely along. we pray for those pulling the handcarts; that when it gets difficult they will have the very same experiences of knowing those who have gone before are capable of coming and pushing the carts at their side. Heavenly father, bless them, protect them, walk with them and see them safely into the valley of the great salt lake.

With the assistance of the spirit, events took place that touched our hearts and inspired us to a greater commitment. Without it, one could only see sagebrush and dusty trails. sensitive hearts would discern the eloquent witness of what transpired, for they
Wagontrain of the past image. Click for full size.
By Dawn Bowen, June 18, 2007
3. Wagontrain of the past
felt a spiritual kinship with those who traveled these trails. Their lives were strengthened and enriched, for the treasures of the trail were revealed only through sacrifice. there are those who would underestimate the difficulties: miles of dust filled winds, temperatures fluctuating 60 degrees in one day, the incessant buzz of swarming mosquitoes and the desolate aridity of desert regions, all factors as real now as they were then. yet the songs of Zion were sung along the trail. some of the children even walked barefoot. our animals stayed strong and we relied on one another for safety and companionship.

On arrival, all were reminded: your wheels again cut deep into the sandy soil of Nebraska. the silhouette of wagons against the Wyoming sky created a picture of unique and wondrous beauty. you looked at the starry heavens at night, in lonely desolate places, and contemplated the wondrous things of god. you marveled at the sunrise and sunsets which marked the passing of each day ... you will now go your separate ways, but you will never forget this remarkable experience, nor will we ... you will tell your children and your grandchildren and your great grandchildren about the year of 1997, when you made the long journey west following the tracks of the pioneers of 150 years earlier. God bless you, my beloved associates, for what you have done for each of us.

Their spirits transcended time and beckoned us to trace their journey for the trail never ends, we will not forget the memories we hold.
Erected 1998 by Sons of Utah Pioneers.
Marker series. This marker is included in the Sons of Utah Pioneers marker series.
Location. 40° 45.163′ N, 111° 49.017′ W. Marker is in Salt Lake City, Utah, in Salt Lake County. Marker can be reached from Sunnyside Avenue. Touch for map. It is in “This is the Place” Heritage Park. Marker is at or near this postal address: 2601 Sunnyside Avenue, Salt Lake City UT 84108, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 10 other markers are within 3 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. This is the Place Monument (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); The Crowds Cheered On . . . (about 300 feet away); The National Pony Express Monument (approx. 0.2 miles away); Unsung Heroes (approx. 0.2 miles away); Donner Hill (approx. 0.8 miles away); L.D.S. Tenth Ward Square (approx. 2.7 miles away); Sandstone Wall & Aquaduct (approx. 2.9 miles away); Dudler's Inn (approx. 2.9 miles away); Dudler's Wine Cellar (approx. 2.9 miles away); The Old Sugar House (approx. 3 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Salt Lake City.
Categories. Settlements & Settlers
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on June 28, 2007, by Dawn Bowen of Fredericksburg, Virginia. This page has been viewed 2,196 times since then and 2 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on June 28, 2007, by Dawn Bowen of Fredericksburg, Virginia. • J. J. Prats was the editor who published this page.
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