• Martin's Cove at Devil's Gate in Wyoming

    Mormon Pioneer

    National Historic Trail IL,IA,NE,UT,WY

Winter Quarters

Winter Quarters Complex - Omaha, Nebraska

Built on Indian land with permission from the U.S. Army, Winter Quarters served as the main settlement of the Mormons on the Missouri River until they moved the fitting-out site to Kanesville in Iowa.

The winter of 1846-47 was devastating, and with inadequate shelter and food they died by the hundreds of malaria, scurvy, dysentery, and a host of other unidentified ailments. Louisa Barnes Pratt recalled in her memoirs, "I hired a man to build me a sod cave. He took turf from the earth, laid it up, covered it with willow brush and sods. Built a chimney of the same. . . . I paid a five dollar gold piece for building my sod house, 10 x 12. . . . A long cold rain storm brought more severely again the chills and fever. These with scurvy made me helpless indeed! . . . Many of my friends sickened and died in that place, when I was not able to leave my room, could not go to their bedside to administer comfort to them in the last trying hours, not even to bid them farewell. Neither could I go to see their remains carried to their final resting place where it was thought I would shortly have to be conveyed."

Winter Quarters encompassed the area of North Omaha near State and 33rd Streets. Historic sites include the Mormon Pioneer Memorial Bridge, Florence Mill, Florence Park, Mormon Pioneer Cemetery, Cutler's Park, and the first Mormon pioneer camp after leaving Winter Quarters. A major interpretive center was built by the L.D.S. Church at Winter Quarters Historical Site in 1997.
 
Image map of the auto tour route driving directions for the Mormon Pioneer NHT across Nebraska.
Image map of the auto tour route driving directions for the Mormon Pioneer NHT across Nebraska.
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Did You Know?

The Mormon Handcart Center at Martin's Cove near Casper, WY.

The Martin Handcart Company of 1856 was caught in a late October snow storm at this location. Rescue wagons from Salt Lake City brought food and clothing. The company continued its trek to a temporary refuge at the cove, but some 150 emigrants died in the freezing cold and blizzard conditions. More...