The Beckwourth Emigrant Trail: Using Historical Accounts To Guide Archaeological Fieldwork In The Plumas National Forest

Publication: SCA Proceedings, Vol. 11

Author: Angel Morgan & Karen Mitchell

Date of Publication: 2011



From 1851 to 1855 the Beckwourth Emigrant Trail was the favored route for those seeking their fortune in the California gold rush. The wagon trail proved effective in getting these travelers over the Sierra Nevada mountain pass and into gold country, despite its extremely difficult route. When the railroad displaced the wagon routes into California, the trail fell into disuse. In 2009, Forest Service archaeologists from the Feather River Ranger District, in partnership with Mt. Hough Ranger District in Plumas National Forest planned to use historical accounts and maps to locate and record existing segments of the trail, beginning the first formal recordation of the Beckwourth Emigrant Trail.