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Search for a Southern Route

The Southern Route

The Old Spanish Trail between new Mexico and California, on the other hand, was regularly used, primarily for commerce, until it lost out to the more southerly trails. In the exodus to California after 1848, the most heavily-traveled branch of the southern route was Cooke's wagon road, including Graham's detour.

Transportation improved rapidly in the Southwest as the rush to California accelerated and the newly-acquired southwestern region began to attract American settlers. Cooke's route was improved, and new roads were opened. Stagecoach travel was inaugurated, and railroads soon entered the Southwest. A rail line spanning the region finally brought the long haul by wagon over the old trails to an end. But the centuries-old lure of California remained, and travel over the southern route continued to expand.

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These items are historical in scope and are intended for educational purposes only; they are not meant as an aid for travel planning.
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