Place

Ash Hollow State Historical Park

Wood road sign that says
Ash Hollow State Historical Park Main Entrance

Quick Facts
Location:
East side of Highway 26, south of Lewellen, Nebraska
Significance:
an important spot for American Indians and later, emigrants on the Oregon and California Trails
Designation:
Nebraska State Historical Park; Ash Hollow Historic District; the cave is a National Historic Landmark

Historical/Interpretive Information/Exhibits, Information, Picnic Table, Restroom, Scenic View/Photo Spot, Trailhead, Water - Drinking/Potable, Wheelchair Accessible

Sweet spring water made Ash Hollow State Historical Park an important spot for American Indians. Centuries ago, a ferocious battle between the Pawnee and Lakota Sioux took place here for control of the valley. Years later, this valley, and its spring water, also became an important stop for emigrants making their way west. They would camp and rest at the springs before proceeding on their journey. As they left, their wagons etched ruts that are still visible, into the bluffs surrounding the spring.

Ash Hollow continues to be a popular place for travelers. The 1000 acre park features a visitor center, a historic school house, and trail ruts and swales.

Site Information

Location (East side of Highway 26, south of Lewellen, Nebraska)

Amenities
Interpretive waysides, nine miles of hiking trails, picnic tables and grills. The history, archaeology and paleontology of the area are interpreted at the visitor center. There is also watchable wildlife, horseback riding, and the Ash Hollow Cave. 

Safety Considerations

More Site Information

Oregon National Historic Trail

California National Historic Trail

Mormon Pioneer National Historic Trail

California National Historic Trail, Mormon Pioneer National Historic Trail, Oregon National Historic Trail

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Duration:
1 minute, 20 seconds

Revel in the beauty and sweeping vistas of western Nebraska while exploring the area’s history and archeology. What was once a popular camp spot for Oregon and California trail travelers, today is a one-thousand-acre park encompassing two historic sites, Ash Hollow and Windlass Hill. Visit go.nps.gov/AshHollow to learn more.

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Last updated: March 7, 2023