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Nebraska Trailblazer #3: Oregon Trail,
Checkup answer sheet


1. What kind of land formation is Chimney Rock and Scotts Bluff? Both are sedimentary rock formations created by wind- and water-born deposits of sediment. It was once part of a ridge of hills which have since been broken eroded by the Platte river valley and wind. Chimney Rock and Scotts Bluff are the remainder of this ridge of hills.

2. List some of the hardships the pioneers suffered on the trail.
cholera, accidental gun shot wounds, injuries from being run over by wagon, accidental burns and broken bones

3. How did the Prairie Schooner wagon get it's name?
The canvas looked like a ship's sail

4. What was a starting point for the Oregon and California Trail in Nebraska? There were numerous starting points over time. Before 1849, few travelers "started" in Nebraska except the Mormons, from the Omaha area. The Oregon trail of the 1840s entered near Fairbury. After 1849, the trail became the "California Trail" and many left from eastern Nebraska points. Although it did not exist until after the main "Oregon Trail" period of the 1840s, a popular starting point for the California trail of the 1850s and the freighting trails of 1860s was Nebraska City. People named trails after the destinations of the users of the trails, so the names of trails changed over time depending on the destination of the primary user.

5. List three popular stopping points and describe why travelers liked to stop there.
Rock Creek Station - good water and abundant wood
Fort Kearny - protection and supplies
Ash Hollow - sheltered valley, fresh spring water

6. It took the pioneers one month to cross Nebraska and four months to get to California or Oregon.

7. Name all of the present-day states the pioneers had to pass through to get to California starting from Nebraska. Wyoming, Utah, Nevada

8. Name all of the present-day states the pioneers had to pass through to get to Oregon starting from Nebraska. Wyoming, Idaho

9. Why did the pioneers use oxen to pull their wagons? They were dependable and inexpensive.

10. Why were the Mormons going to Utah? To escape religious persecution.



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Last updated 22 December 1998

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