California dreaming in 1841

California dreaming in 1841 (HM2LAX)

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N 42° 38.638', W 111° 43.824'

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The Bidwell-Bartleson Party
In 1841, John Bidwell and John Bartleson became the first Americans emigrants to undertake a wagon crossing from Missouri to California.
Although Oregon was the primary destination of early westward-bound pioneers, new and enticing stories of California's warm weather and an absence of blizzards and tornadoes were attracting attention.

A party divided
Near Sheep Rock, Idaho, the party divided. One-half of the group of 69 men, women, and children decided to continue on the more-traveled Oregon Trail route. The remaining intrepid members of the Bidwell-Bartleson Party turned south to Utah and the Great Salt Lake, continued west to Nevada, finally arriving in California.

Bound for California without a map
"Our ignorance of the route was complete" admitted John Bidwell years later in his trip memoir.
Fortunately, a group of Jesuit missionaries also traveling west and guided by mountain man Thomas Fitzpatrick (1799-1854) agreed to join with the Bidwell-Bartleson Party. It was a fateful decision.
Bidwell recalled, "At first we were independent and fought we could not afford to wait for a slow missionary party. But when we found that no one knew which way to go, we sobered down and waited for them to come up; and it was well we did, for otherwise

probably not one of us would ever have reached California because of our inexperience.
Placed ByNational Park Service, Caribou Historical Society, Oregon and California National Historic Trails, National Trails System
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Sunday, September 29th, 2019 at 11:01am PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)12T E 440123 N 4721537
Decimal Degrees42.64396667, -111.73040000
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 42° 38.638', W 111° 43.824'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds42° 38' 38.28" N, 111° 43' 49.44" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Which side of the road?Marker is on the right when traveling South
Closest Postal AddressAt or near , ,
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