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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”

Fort Rock in Lake County, Oregon — The American West (Northwest)
 

A Path to the Past

10,000 Years of Homesteading

 
 
A Path to the Past Marker image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, June 27, 2016
1. A Path to the Past Marker
Inscription.  
The history of the west is linked with the idea of finding a new home in a challenging land. We call it homesteading.

During the Pleistocene epoch, homesteaders in the Fort Rock Basin were mammoths, camels, horses, flamingos, and ocean-going fish. They settled in a land of lush forest with a huge lake that covered hundreds of square miles.

Approximately 10,000 years ago at the end of the Pleistocene, the lake began drying up and the forests receded. Animal homesteaders dependent upon that disappearing environment moved on or died, leaving behind their fossil remains.

Around this time, a new species appeared on the landscape, Homo sapiens, the first "native" Americans.

These earliest people left behind petroglyphs, weapon points, sagebrush sandals, and the mystery of where they came from and why they left.

During a long climatic transition period, many other peoples came and departed. It was only around 500 years ago that the Northern Paiute came to the Fort Rock Basin.

Modern European homesteaders came to the high desert in 1905. People arrived in substantial
A Path to the Past Marker (<i>wide view</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, June 27, 2016
2. A Path to the Past Marker (wide view)
numbers to cultivate and dry farm the desert. But there was a harsh lesson to be learned about depending on the vagary of nature. Drought and failed crops drove most of these "new" homesteaders away by 1920.

They left behind the bleached remains of shattered homes and shattered dreams. These homesteaders all learned the lesson of millennia… to challenge nature is an ever-changing and never-ending struggle.
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Anthropology & ArchaeologyNative AmericansPaleontologySettlements & Settlers.
 
Location. 43° 21.351′ N, 121° 3.476′ W. Marker is in Fort Rock, Oregon, in Lake County. Marker is on Old Fort Rock Road (County Route 5-10) west of County Route 5-13, on the right when traveling east. Marker is located in front of the Fort Rock Homestead Museum, along the boardwalk overlooking historic building exhibits. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Fort Rock OR 97735, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Claiming the Desert (a few steps from this marker); Home Sweet Home (a few steps from this marker); The First People of Fort Rock (approx. 1.3 miles away); Cowboy, Horseman, Philosopher (approx. 1.3 miles away); The Birth of a Tuff Ring
Homestead Cabins (<i>exhibits near marker</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, June 27, 2016
3. Homestead Cabins (exhibits near marker)
(approx. 1.3 miles away); Fort Rock State Park (approx. 1.3 miles away); Fort Rock (approx. 1.3 miles away); Reuban A. "Reub" Long (approx. 1.3 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Fort Rock.
 
Historic exhibits near marker image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, June 27, 2016
4. Historic exhibits near marker
Historic exhibit near marker image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, June 27, 2016
5. Historic exhibit near marker
Fort Rock (<i>view from near marker</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, June 27, 2016
6. Fort Rock (view from near marker)
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on February 3, 2018. It was originally submitted on February 2, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 103 times since then and 13 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on February 2, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. • Andrew Ruppenstein was the editor who published this page.
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Sep. 29, 2020