Historic Sites on the Oregon Trail

The Oregon Trail

The long journey of pioneers who crossed over half the continent most often was on the Oregon Trail, a key migration route over plains, rolling hills, rivers, and mountain passes.

Beginning in Independence, Missouri, the 2,170 mile-long Oregon Trail ended at Oregon City, Oregon, taking the adventurous pioneers through territories that would later become Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska, Wyoming, Idaho, and Oregon.

As early as 1823 fur traders and explorers scouted the route that became the Oregon Trail. Within a few years it was regularly by traders, mountain men, military expeditions, and missionaries.

Wagon Trains

In 1842 the first organized wagon train set out from Elm Grove, Missouri. That first wagon train on the Oregon Trail had over 100 pioneers, but the next year up to 1,000 settlers departed in a massive wagon train and arrived in the Willamette Valley. Hundreds of thousands more followed in the years to come, especially when those eager to participate in the California gold rush used the Oregon Trail to travel west.

Oregon City

Oregon City, Oregon, “the end of the Oregon Trail”, was established in 1829 by the Hudson’s Bay Company. In 1844 Oregon City became the first city west of the Rocky Mountains to be incorporated. Oregon City was, at the time, in the Oregon Territory and was the proposed capital of the Territory.

Landmarks and Historical Sites

There are many landmarks along the Oregon Trail, all important historical sites on the settler’s trek to Oregon City and the beautiful Willamette Valley of western Oregon.

This is a list of historical sites on the Oregon Trail.

MISSOURI:

St. Louis, Missouri
Independence, Missouri
St. Joseph, Missouri
Westport, Missouri

IOWA:

Council Bluffs, Iowa

KANSAS:

Shawnee Mission, Kansas
Alcove Spring, Kansas

NEBRASKA

Rock Creek Station, Nebraska
Fort Kearny, Nebraska
Ash Hollow, Nebraska
Courthouse Rock, Nebraska
Chimney Rock, Nebraska
Scotts Bluffs, Nebraska

WYOMING

Fort Laramie, Wyoming
Fort Caspar, Wyoming
Independence Rock, Wyoming
Devils Gate, Wyoming
South Pass, Wyoming
Fort Bridger, Wyoming

IDAHO

Fort Hall, Idaho
Craters of the Moon, Idaho
Shoshone Falls, Idaho
3 Island Crossing, Idaho
Fort Boise, Idaho

WASHINGTON

Whitman Mission, Washington
Fort Vancouver, Washington

OREGON

Grande Ronde, Oregon
The Dalles, Oregon
Barlow Road, Oregon

Oregon City, Oregon – The End of the Oregon Trail

Oregon City is one of the most visited sites by those interested in the Oregon Trail. The “End of the Oregon Trail Interpretive Center” is located at 1726 Washington Street in Oregon City. The attraction of tourists to Oregon City to see the “End of the Oregon Trail Interpretive Center” will also help draw people to Trails End Log Church.