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

First Transcontinental Telegraph

 
 
First Transcontinental Telegraph Marker image. Click for full size.
By Duane Hall, May 28, 2013
1. First Transcontinental Telegraph Marker
Inscription. In 1859, the California legislature offered $6,000 a year for the first overland telegraph. This was followed by an act of the United States Congress on June 16, 1860, pledging $40,000 a year for ten years for carrying government messages. With these inducements, the first work was begun in 1860, but by the end of that year the line ran only to Fort Kearny, Nebraska, from the east and to Fort Churchill, Nevada, from the west.

There was some question of which route should be followed over the Rocky Mountains. The Western Union and Missouri Telegraph Company informed Colorado residents that if they would subscribe $20,000 worth of stock in the enterprise, the company would run the line through Denver, otherwise, the emigrant and mail route over South Pass would be followed. The support in Colorado did not come, and the telegraph was pushed across Wyoming in the summer and fall of 1861. The lack of trees along much of the western route posed a considerable construction problem, but in the fall of 1861, the transcontinental telegraph carried the first message from New York to San Francisco. The remains of the telegraph poles have long since disappeared, but it passed along the emigrant trail in front of this sign.
 
Erected by Bureau of Land Management.
 
Location.
First Transcontinental Telegraph Marker image. Click for full size.
By Duane Hall, May 28, 2013
2. First Transcontinental Telegraph Marker
Marker is the center marker
41° 59.902′ N, 109° 37.342′ W. Marker is near Farson, Wyoming, in Sweetwater County. Marker can be reached from State Highway 28 11˝ miles west of U.S. 191, on the left when traveling west. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Farson WY 82932, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Pilot Butte (a few steps from this marker); Emigrant/Indian Relations (a few steps from this marker); Pilot Butte & "Graves" of the Unknown Emigrants (within shouting distance of this marker); Death on the Trail (within shouting distance of this marker); Continuing the Journey West (within shouting distance of this marker); Burial on the Trail (within shouting distance of this marker); "Graves" of the Unknown Emigrants (within shouting distance of this marker); Simpson's Hollow (approx. 2.1 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Farson.
 
More about this marker. Marker is one of eight interpretive signs at the Pilot Butte Emigrant Trails Interpretive Site. Sign donated by the Wyoming Centennial Commission.
 
Related markers. Click here for a list of markers that are related to this marker.
 
Categories. Communications
 
The Overland Pony Express image. Click for full size.
Engraving from photograph by Savage, Salt Lake City; from a painting by George M. Ottinger, 1867
3. The Overland Pony Express
Pony Express rider passes by the transcontinental telegraph being built. Illustration for Harper’s Weekly issue of November 2, 1867.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on October 23, 2016. This page originally submitted on July 26, 2013, by Duane Hall of Abilene, Texas. This page has been viewed 450 times since then and 84 times this year. This page was the Marker of the Week October 23, 2016. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on July 26, 2013, by Duane Hall of Abilene, Texas.   3. submitted on October 23, 2016, by J. J. Prats of Powell, Ohio.
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