Saint Maries in Benewah County, Idaho — The American West (Mountains)
Mullan Trail Road
Capt. John Mullan U.S. Army
Capt. John Mullan, US Army, Constructor and surveyor. He was directed to mark a wagon and railroad route from Fort Benton, Montana to Walla Walla, Washington from 1853-1855. He built the actual road 1859-62. The original road passed eight miles from here.
Portions of the road were used for different purposes – in Montana, it was used to transport supplies to the gold camps. Settlers used the eastern and western portions of the road to access homestead property.
The road had numerous river crossings, requiring over 160 bridges. Eventually Mullan revised the route to avoid the lowland flooding experienced where the road crossed the lower St. Joe Valley.
Mullan Aided by Schitsu’umsh’ Guide
Mullan was aided by many Indian guides, including Bassile, a Schitsu’umsh (Coeur d’Alene) tribal member. The work force was usually about 60 men plus 30 to 40 soldiers. His crew included engineers, a physician, carpenters, a blacksmith, teamsters, as well as laborers.
Location. 47° 19.101′ N, 116° 35.225′ W. Marker is in Saint Maries, Idaho, in Benewah County. Marker is on State Highway 5 0.1 miles west of North 23rd Street, on the right when traveling west. Touch for map
Other nearby markers. At least 4 other markers are within 9 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. John Mullan (a few steps from this marker); Splash Dam at Hobo Creek (within shouting distance of this marker); Willamette Steam Donkey Engine (within shouting distance of this marker); Heyburn State Park (approx. 9 miles away).
Related markers. Click here for a list of markers that are related to this marker.
Also see . . .
1. The Mullan Road: History of its Construction and Early Use.
The Mullan Road, constructed between 1858 and 1862, was the first wagon road to cross the Rockies to the Inland Northwest. Often, after its "completion," it was in such disrepair that only foot travelers and pack animals could follow its course, especially through the mountains. (Submitted on November 13, 2017, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.)
2. Locating the Mullan Road.
U.S. Army Lt. John Mullan was both a trailblazer and eventually a trail maker. Between 1858 and 1862, he organized the construction of the first wagon road to cross the Rockies, binding together the navigable headwaters (Submitted on November 13, 2017, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.)
3. Mullan Road.
As early as 1852 the US government began to think about building an overland route to the Pacific Ocean to help settle the area with pioneers and eliminate any claims that France, England or Russia had on the disputed territories. Despite the Lewis and Clark expedition, little detail was known about the country. Although the road was never heavily used by the military, it was an important conduit for civilian passage, which hastened settling of the northwestern United States. In the first year after completion, it was used by an estimated 20,000 people, 6,000 horses and mules, 5,000 cattle and 83 wagons. (Submitted on November 13, 2017, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.)
Categories. • Exploration • Native Americans • Roads & Vehicles • Settlements & Settlers •
Credits. This page was last revised on December 4, 2017. This page originally submitted on November 13, 2017, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 76 times since then and 23 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on November 13, 2017, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. 6. submitted on November 18, 2017, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.