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Green River in Sweetwater County, Wyoming — The American West (Mountains)
 

John Wesley Powell

 
 
John Wesley Powell Marker image. Click for full size.
By Duane Hall, July 6, 2013
1. John Wesley Powell Marker
At front base of sculpture
Inscription. From Green River, Wyoming on May 24, 1869 Major John Wesley Powell and a group of voyagers set out to discover the mysteries of one of the last unexplored regions in the continental United States--the Green and Colorado Rivers. Powell was a disabled veteran who lost his right arm in the Civil War. Later he turned to exploration, and in 1869 and 1871 led crews down the rivers and through the Grand Canyon.

The town of Green River was chosen as the starting point because it was here that the river and the transcontinental railroad met. The newly completed Union Pacific Railroad brought boats and supplies to the launch site.

Powell's expeditions departed from an area around a small island in the Green River. In 1969 the site was designated a National Historic Place and renamed Expedition Island.

Years later the wild river that Powell knew as the Green was tamed and changed by the installation of two dams; Fontenelle, fifty miles upstream from Green River, and Flaming Gorge, seventy miles downstream.

Powell was later appointed director of the Smithsonian's Bureau of Ethnology and director of the United States Geological Survey. He died in 1902 and is buried in Arlington National Cemetery.

The Powell expeditions fired the imagination of the American public with the romance of exploring
John Wesley Powell Monument image. Click for full size.
By Mary Johnston-Clark, circa October 2003
2. John Wesley Powell Monument
Bronze by David Alan Clark is 9½ feet tall, excluding oar.
a final frontier, but more importantly, the scientific studies of the river basins were the first done in the remote Colorado Plateau, and formed the basis for a new arid land policy.
 
Erected 2003 by City of Green River in cooperation with the Sweetwater County Historical Museum.
 
Location. 41° 31.75′ N, 109° 28.035′ W. Marker is in Green River, Wyoming, in Sweetwater County. Marker is at the intersection of Flaming Gorge Way and North Center Street when traveling north on Flaming Gorge Way. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 3 East Flaming Gorge Way, Green River WY 82935, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Oregon Trail Memorial (within shouting distance of this marker); Green River Brewery (about 500 feet away, measured in a direct line); Trona Precursors (about 700 feet away); Riverside Swimming Pool (approx. 0.4 miles away); Green River City Hall - 1942-1954 (approx. 0.4 miles away); Julius Stone (approx. 0.4 miles away); The Paddlewheeler Comet - 1908 (approx. 0.4 miles away); Kolb Brothers (approx. 0.4 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Green River.
 
Regarding John Wesley Powell. John Wesley Powell led two (1869 and 1872) expeditions
John Wesley Powell (1834–1902) image. Click for full size.
By Mary Johnston-Clark, circa October 2003
3. John Wesley Powell (1834–1902)
down the Green and Colorado Rivers, despite having lost his right arm in the Battle of Shiloh.

Both of the Powell Expeditions originated from the city of Green River, Wyoming. This sculpture by David Alan Clark depicts Powell gazing downstream. It is installed in front of the Sweetwater County Historical Museum, 3 E. Flaming Gorge Way in Green River, just off I-80.
 
Also see . . .
1. Wikipedia Entry. “The railroad companies, who owned vast tracts of lands granted in return for building the railways, did not agree with Powell’s views on land conservation. They aggressively lobbied Congress to reject Powell’s policy proposals and to encourage farming instead, as they wanted to cash in on their lands. The US Congress went along and developed legislation that encouraged pioneer settlement of the American West based on agricultural use of land. ... At an 1883 irrigation conference, Powell would prophetically remark: ‘Gentlemen, you are piling up a heritage of conflict and litigation over water rights, for there is not sufficient water to supply the land.’ Powell’s recommendations for development of the West were largely ignored until after the Dust Bowl of the 1920s and 1930s, resulting in untold suffering associated with pioneer subsistence farms that failed due to insufficient rain.” (Submitted on March 22, 2014.)
John Wesley Powell portrait image. Click for full size.
By Mary Johnston-Clark sculpture photo, Powell photo origin unknown., October 2003
4. John Wesley Powell portrait
The photo on the right is a formal portrait of John Wesley Powell, age 35, circa 1869.
 

2. How the John Wesley Powell statue was made. The web page of the Artist, David Alan Clark. (Submitted on October 28, 2008.) 
 
Categories. ExplorationHeroesNotable PersonsScience & MedicineWar, US CivilWaterways & Vessels
 
John Wesley Powell Marker image. Click for full size.
By Mary Johnston-Clark, October 2003
5. John Wesley Powell Marker
Castle Rock, in the background, is a landmark that Powell watched recede into the distance as he embarked down the Green River in a fleet of simple wooden boats.
Nearby Castle Rock as seen from the marker image. Click for full size.
By Robert L Weber, June 14, 2010
6. Nearby Castle Rock as seen from the marker
John Wesley Powell Monument in 2013 image. Click for full size.
By Duane Hall, July 6, 2013
7. John Wesley Powell Monument in 2013
Portrait of J. W. Powell with Indian image. Click for full size.
By Frederick Samuel Dellenbaugh (presumed), circa 1874
8. Portrait of J. W. Powell with Indian
Powell is shown with Tau-gu, a Pauiute. Photograph was most likely taken by explorer Frederick Samuel Dellenbaugh, a member of John Wesley Powell’s second Colorado River expedition. Courtesy Wikipedia Commons.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on October 27, 2008, by Mary Johnston-Clark of Lander, Wyoming. This page has been viewed 2,959 times since then and 110 times this year. Last updated on October 29, 2008, by Mary Johnston-Clark of Lander, Wyoming. This page was the Marker of the Week March 23, 2014. Photos:   1. submitted on August 16, 2013, by Duane Hall of Abilene, Texas.   2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on October 27, 2008, by Mary Johnston-Clark of Lander, Wyoming.   6. submitted on June 6, 2011, by Bob (peach) Weber of Prescott Valley, Arizona.   7. submitted on August 16, 2013, by Duane Hall of Abilene, Texas.   8. submitted on March 22, 2014, by J. J. Prats of Springfield, Virginia. • Kevin W. was the editor who published this page.
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