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Picturing history: Wagon ruts, Santa Fe Trail

Published: Wednesday, Jan. 30 2013 5:00 a.m. MST

Seen in these views are wagon ruts on what was once the Santa Fe Trail near Fort Larned, Kan. From the ground, the ruts appear like several long, shallow depressions in the ground. According to interpretive signage on site, this area has somehow escaped the plow over the years, making the impressions from 60 years of wagons and teams still identifiable. The camera, versus the natural eye, makes the ruts more difficult to discern. For the most part, members of the Mormon Battalion utilized the Santa Fe Trail until they reached the city of the same name. Preserved ruts such as those seen here provided researchers and others interested in this remarkable adventure with precise locations of where the battalion members trekked through this dry and difficult region in September 1846.

Kenneth Mays,

Seen in these photos are wagon ruts on what was once the Santa Fe Trail near Fort Larned, Kan. From the ground, the ruts appear like several long, shallow depressions in the ground.

According to interpretive signage on site, this area has somehow escaped the plow over the years, making the impressions from 60 years of wagons and teams still identifiable. The camera, versus the natural eye, makes the ruts more difficult to discern.

For the most part, members of the Mormon Battalion utilized the Santa Fe Trail until they reached the city of the same name.

Preserved ruts such as those seen here provided researchers and others interested in this remarkable adventure with precise locations of where the battalion members trekked through this dry and difficult region in September 1846.

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