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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Ketchum in Blaine County, Idaho — The American West (Mountains)
 

The Lewis Ore Wagons

 
 
The Lewis Ore Wagons Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, June 26, 2017
1. The Lewis Ore Wagons Marker
Inscription. Horace Lewis began the "Ketchum Fast Freight Line" soon after the town was founded on August 2, 1880. The first load of ore was carried from the Elkhorn mine to the railroad at Kelton, Utah. These monstrous wagons with six-foot wheels known as "The Big Hitch made the round trip in about two weeks, returning to Ketchum with merchandise and freight for local businesses. In 1884, when the Oregon Shoreline Railroad reached Ketchum, the wagons distributed freight to mines and returned with ore to the Philadelphia smelter. They carried as much as 18,000 pounds of ore and covered 12 to 14 miles per day. By 1902, when rail service to Mackay and Challis was inaugurated, the need for these giant wagons diminished. Today the appearance of the wagons in Ketchum's annual Wagon Days Parade are reminders of the vital role they played during the area's early days.

The Bonning Cabin located adjacent to the Ore Wagon Museum was built in 1882. For years it served as a bunkhouse for the ore wagon freight crews. The one-room log cabin was built out of hand-squared logs hewn with a broad axe. The original roof was covered with clay. Today, it remains one of the town's oldest buildings.
 
Erected 2006 by The Ketchum-Sun Valley Historical Society; City of Ketchum; E Clampus Vitus, Chief Truckee Chapter No.
The Lewis Ore Wagons Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, June 26, 2017
2. The Lewis Ore Wagons Marker
The Bonning cabin is in the background.
3691, Lewis and Clark Outpost No. 1805.
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the E Clampus Vitus marker series.
 
Location. 43° 40.996′ N, 114° 21.828′ W. Marker is in Ketchum, Idaho, in Blaine County. Marker is on East Avenue near 5th Street East, on the left when traveling north. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 500 East Avenue, Ketchum ID 83340, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 12 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. The Congregational Church (within shouting distance of this marker); Ketchum (about 600 feet away, measured in a direct line); Ski Lifts (approx. 2.2 miles away); W.H. Watt Building (approx. 11 miles away); Bullion Block Site/Werthheimer Building (approx. 11.6 miles away); J.J. Tracy Building (approx. 11.6 miles away); J.C. Fox Building (approx. 11.6 miles away); Rialto Hotel (approx. 11.7 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Ketchum.
 
More about this marker. The marker is on the 5th Street East side of the Ore Wagon Museum.
 
Categories. Horticulture & ForestryRoads & Vehicles
 
The Ore Wagon Museum image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, June 26, 2017
3. The Ore Wagon Museum
Note that the Ore Wagon Museum is also an electric vehicle charging station.
The Ore Wagon Museum image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, June 26, 2017
4. The Ore Wagon Museum
The Big Hitch image. Click for full size.
By Idaho Mountain Express
5. The Big Hitch
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on November 15, 2017. This page originally submitted on November 15, 2017, by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California. This page has been viewed 45 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on November 15, 2017, by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California.
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