"FORT KEARNY, ON THE OREGON TRAIL" Top 5 Page for this destination Kearney Off The Beaten Path Tip by Rich62
Kearney Off The Beaten Path: 10 reviews and 28 photos
Fort Kearny is located just south and east of Kearney, Nebraska. (The town has an extra "e" in its spelling due to an early-day error when the town was founded.) Going east on Interstate 80, take the Kearney exit (#272) and go south across the river and in a mile or so turn east on the Ft. Kearny road (paved) to the fort. Going west, take the Minden exit south across the river and in a mile or so turn west on Ft. Kearny road to the fort. (note; do not turn into the Ft. Kearny Recreation Area if you are looking for the fort itself.)
Ft. Kearny was the first major stop for the pioneers on the Oregon Trail. Here wagons would accumulate into the famous wagon trains of 100 or more, for protection. There is a nice visitor's center here, a blacksmith shop and other nice displays. Plus plenty of grass for the kids to play on. A park permit is required but it can be purchased at the visitors center.
The picture shows one corner of the "stockade" at the fort. The idea was that, in case of Indian attack, all soldiers and pioneers could take refuge inside the fort. However, no attack ever took place here; it was west of here where the dangers increased.
When the Great Transcontinental Railroad came through Kearney, just north of the river, that spelled the end of the Oregon Trail and the fort was no longer needed.
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