Mormon Trail to Southern CaliforniaEdit This Page

From FamilySearch Wiki

United States Gotoarrow.png Migration Gotoarrow.png Trails and Roads Gotoarrow.png Mormon Trail to Southern California

UT-NV-CA Trails.png
The Mormon Trail to southern California was opened when former Mormon Battalion soldiers began traveling between southern California and Salt Lake City, Utah as early as 1847. The trail reached from Salt Lake City, Utah to Las Vegas, Nevada to Los Angeles California about 706 miles (1136 km).

Contents

Historical Background

In 1847 members of the Mormon Battalion were honorably discharged at Los Angeles, California from their service in the U.S. Army during the Mexican War. Some made their way from various places in California to Salt Lake City, Utah. Those leaving from southern California blazed the trail that came to be called the Mormon Trail to southern California. The next year Jefferson Hunt, one of these former soldiers, and others made the return trip to California to pick up supplies. In 1849 Gold Rush emigrants hired Hunt to show them this trail.[1]

Main Route

The Mormon Trail to southern California usually followed the west side of the Wasatch Front linking several settlements from Salt Lake City to St. George in Utah. From St. George, Utah the trail passed through the extreme northwestern tip of Arizona and then on to Las Vegas, Nevada. From Las Vegas the road usually crossed the mountains down into San Bernardino, California and then west to Los Angeles. Sometimes it was extended south to San Diego.

The exact route of the Mormon Trail to Southern California may have varied over the years for different groups. Most often it passed through:

Connecting migration routes. The Mormon Trail to southern California linked to other migration routes at each end and overlapped part of another. The migration pathways connected at the northeast end included:

The migration pathways connected at the southwest end of the Mormon Trail included:

Overlapping migration route The Old Spanish Trail (1829) and the Mormon Trail to southern California overlap from Cedar City, Utah to Los Angeles, California.

Modern parallels. The modern road that roughly matches the Mormon Trail to southern California is Interstate I-15.

Settlers and Records

No complete list of pioneer settlers who traveled the Mormon Trail to southern California is known to exist. However, a variety of sources exist which can be used to identify most of them.

Mormon Pioneers.  Two sets of settlers used the Mormon Trail to southern California. First, the Mormon pioneers tended to settle along the trail in Utah, Nevada, or San Bernardino in California. Use the research strategies and tools described on the Mormon Trail Wiki page to help identify most of them.

California Pioneers.  A second set of pioneers were bound primarily for southern California. For strategies and records you can use to help identity California settlers, see the California Trail Wiki page.

References

  1. "Jefferson Hunt" in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jefferson_Hunt (accessed 6 September 2011).

 

Need additional research help? Contact our research help specialists.

Need wiki, indexing, or website help? Contact our product teams.


Did you find this article helpful?

You're invited to explain your rating on the discussion page (you must be signed in).

  • This page was last modified on 12 April 2014, at 19:18.
  • This page has been accessed 3,881 times.