Trail Through Time
Oregon - California Trail Ruts, Wyoming
During the 1840s and 1850s nearly a half million emigrants eked their way westward, bound for Oregon, California, and Utah. Far from being merely a "trail," the Oregon - California Trail was a highway of travel east and west, especially crowded during the years of the California gold rush. The marks of the road can still be seen as in these ruts etched into the rock south of Guernsey, Wyoming. The road transformed more than the rocks, though. The trail also unleashed forces of change that were at once physical, social, economic, technological, and cultural. The ruts in the road represented not just a way west, but in a sense paved a way to the present.
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