Nevada Historic Markers in Pershing County
Nevada Historical Marker 49
Applegate-Lassen Emigrant Trail Cutoff
I-80 at Imlay Exit
Jesse and Lindsay Applegate headed south from Willamette Valley, Oregon, June 29, 1846, seeking a less hazardous route to that region from the east. On July 21, they came to a large meadow on the Humboldt River, what is now the nearby Rye Patch Reservoir. Thus they established the Applegate Trail.
During the remainder of 1846 and for the next two years, Oregon emigrants successfully travelled this trail.
In 1848, Peter Lassen, hoping to bring emigrants to his ranch, acted as guide to a party of ten to 12 wagons bound for California. He followed a route from here to Goose Lake where he turned southward over terrain that was barely passable. The emigrants suffered great hardships; many lives and livestock were lost. It became known as the "Death Route."