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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Borger in Hutchinson County, Texas — The American South (West South Central)
 

Fort Smith-Santa Fe Trail

 
 
Fort Smith-Santa Fe Trail Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Kirchner, March 15, 2016
1. Fort Smith-Santa Fe Trail Marker
Inscription. Josiah Gregg (1806-50) blazed the Fort Smith-Santa Fe Trail in 1840 as a shorter route between the U.S. and New Mexico. He crossed this site on March 17, 1840, while returning to Arkansas from a trading expedition to Santa Fe and Chihuahua. In a book, "Commerce of the Prairies", published in 1844, Gregg recommended the new route, which paralleled the Canadian River. Over 2,000 California-bound gold seekers traveled it in 1849. The largest wagon train of that year was accompanied by U.S. Army troops commanded by Captain Randolph B. Marcy (1812-87), who made a survey of the trail for a proposed national wagon road. Marcy's party crossed this site on June 9, 1849.

The extensive use of the Fort Smith-Santa Fe Trail in the early 1850s caused it to be considered as a favorable route for a transcontinental railroad. Lt. A. W. Whipple of the Army Corps of Engineer surveyed a possible route in the summer of 1853. By the late 1850s, emigrants were traveling a more southern road through El Paso, which was eventually to become the southern railroad route, and the Fort Smith-Santa Fe Trail fell into disuse and was finally abandoned.

In many places on the Plains, the wagon ruts are still visible in the undisturbed prairie sod.
 
Erected 1974 by Texas Historical
Fort Smith-Santa Fe Trail Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Kirchner, March 15, 2016
2. Fort Smith-Santa Fe Trail Marker
Fort Smith-Santa Fe Trail Marker is on the left, Beale Road Marker is on the right.
Commission. (Marker Number 2017.)
 
Location. 35° 39.263′ N, 101° 24.321′ W. Marker is in Borger, Texas, in Hutchinson County. Marker is on Marcy Trail, on the right when traveling south. Touch for map. Marker is in front of gazebo near library and administration building, Frank Phillips Junior College. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1300 West Roosevelt, Borger TX 79007, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Beale Road (here, next to this marker); Site of John and Maggie Weatherly Half-Dugout Site (approx. 0.2 miles away); Girl Scout Little House (approx. one mile away); First Methodist Church of Borger (approx. 1.1 miles away); Quanah Parker Trail (approx. 1.5 miles away); Borger 1929 Jail (approx. 1.5 miles away); Grand Hotel and Grand Hardware Building (approx. 1.5 miles away); Twentieth Century Club (approx. 1.6 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Borger.
 
Categories. Roads & Vehicles
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on March 27, 2016, by Bill Kirchner of Tucson, Arizona. This page has been viewed 186 times since then and 54 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on March 27, 2016, by Bill Kirchner of Tucson, Arizona.
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