PointofInterestRoadSigns.com - Register Cliff


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Register Cliff


Location of sign -  Follow South Guernsey Road south out of Guernsey. After you cross the river (west to Trail Ruts), continue on 

South Guernsey Road for just over a mile. You'll see the sign for Register Cliff State Historic Site. It's at the end (about a mile) of 

this dirt road.


Photo taken June 2007

Register Cliff road sign

Photo courtesy of Jimmy Wayne


Text of sign:


The wayfarer's penchant for inscribing names and dates on prominent landmarks excites the interest of his descendants. Regrettably,

marks of historic value are often effaced by later opportunists.


Along the Oregon Trail, famed transcontinental route of the 19th century, pertinent dates are from the 1820's through the 1860's.

Three outstanding recording areas exist within Wyoming: Register Cliff here; Independence Rock, 180 miles west; and Names Hill, 

a further 175 miles along the Trail's wandering course. Register Cliff and Names Hill are self-evident titles; Independence Rock 

derives from a July 4th 1825 observance which, according to some authorities, was staged by Mountain Men of Fur Trade fame.


Register Cliff invited emigrants because broad river bottoms offered pleasing campsites and excellent pasture. Hardship and illness 

were inevitable to Trail travel; of 55,000 emigrants during a peak years, some 5,000 died enroute. Cliffside graves attest to the high

 mortality. This being their lot, travelers eagerly sought and singularly valued recuperative layovers. Here, rest offered the 

opportunity to register.


But not all who registered were worn and grieving emigrants. early inscriptions were by Mountain Men inured to wilderness life -- 

many descendants of two centuries of French Fur Trade;  One reads: 1829 Does it denote an observance? If the American 

Independence Day was celebrated in 1825 at Independence Rock could the French trappers have noted Bastille Day at Register 

Cliff in 1829?



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