Santa Fe Trail signs to be dedicated

A dedication ceremony is planned for 2:30 p.m. Sunday to celebrate the installation of signs marking various locations related to the Santa Fe Trail throughout Marion County.

The ceremony will be at Cottonwood Crossing historic interpretive kiosk 1.5 miles west of Durham on 290th, a paved county road.

Dignitaries representing the National Park Service, Santa Fe Trail Association and county government will be on hand.

All persons associated with the sign project, and all persons interested in the history of the Santa Fe National Historic Trail, are welcome and encouraged to attend.

With funding and assistance from the National Park Service, the Cottonwood Crossing Chapter of the Santa Fe Trail Association has installed more than 100 signs related to the Santa Fe Trail in Marion County.

Marion County is believed to be the first county in which the SFNHT ?family of signs? has been fully implemented.

The signs include:

? ?Crosses Here? signs marking locations where the Santa Fe Trail intersects today?s county roads.

? ?Local Tour? signs designating a driving tour route across Marion County that takes travelers to 20 sites of historic interest related to the Santa Fe Trail.

? ?Site Entrance? signs designating locations of two historic interpretive sites on the Santa Fe Trail: Cottonwood Crossing 1.5 miles west of Durham, and Lost Spring Station 2.5 miles west of the Lost Springs community.

? ?Historic Trails Information? sign located on U.S. Highway 56 at the Marion/McPherson county line adjacent to the stone Marker commemorating the Santa Fe and Chisholm trails.

The Santa Fe Trail was a trail of commerce, forming a transportation link between the Missouri River and Santa Fe, N.M.

The trail was in use in Marion County from 1821 through 1866. It initially was an international trail, and later a national trail after the Mexican-American War.

The Santa Fe Trail passed into history when the railroad reached Santa Fe in 1880.

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