The Southern Emigrant Trail

Vallecito, CA Butterfield State Station

Publication: Los Angeles Corral, No. 256

Author: Phil Brigandi

Date of Publication: Fall 2009

PDF File: Brigandi-The-Southern-Emigrant-Trail.pdf


The Southern Emigrant Trail has a long and interesting history. In its heyday, it was the major overland route in and out of Southern California. It played a part in every era of our history for more than a century. Its most famous era was the period from the start of the Mexican War, through the California Gold Rush, and on to the days of the Butterfield stage. But unlike many other early overland trails, the Southern Emigrant Trail survived the coming of the railroad, and was still being used to cross the California desert well into the 20th Century.