BRANCH: The Wet Route
DESIGNATION: Coon Creek Crossing
LOCATION: From the Site C-3 marker, continue southwest 2.5 miles on U.S. 56 to the marker on the right. En route, you will pass through the town of Garfield, Kansas.
GPS AT MARKER: N38 03.910 -- W99 15.284
TOPOGRAPHICAL EVIDENCE: Coon Creek
PHYSICAL EVIDENCE: None
USGS AERIAL PHOTO: Coon Creek Crossing
MODERN DAY MAP: Santa Fe Trail Map Pawnee County, Kansas
TOPOGRAPHIC MAP: Topographic Map
HISTORIC DESCRIPTION: Crossing of Coon Creek on The Wet Route and the Campsite of the Santa Fe Trail Survey Team on September 1-2, 1825.
DISTANCE: From Pawnee Fork Crossing (Site C-2), 11.43 miles.
Excerpted from "From Fort Leavenworth to Santa Fe, by the way of the upper ferry of the Kansas River and the Cimarron".
From Fort Leavenworth to Pawnee Rock.--Teams sometimes camp near here and drive stock to the Arkansas to water. No wood.
5.28. Ash Creek.--Water above and below crossing, uncertain.
6.65. Pawnee Fork.--Best grass some distance above crossing. From Pawnee Fork to the lower crossing of the Arkansas, a distance of 98 1/2 miles, convenient camping places can be found along the Arkansas; the most prominent localities are therefore only mentioned. A supply of fuel should be laid in at Pawnee Fork to last till you pass Fort Mann, though it may be obtained but inconveniently, from the opposite side of the Arkansas. Dry Route branches off at 3 1/2 miles (estimated). This route joins the main one again 10 miles this side of Fort Mann. It is said to be a good one, but deficient in water and without wood.
11.43. Coon Creek.
46.58. Jackson's Island.
5.01. Dry Route comes in.
10.05. Fort Mann.
Randolph B. Marcy, The Prairie Traveler, A Handbook for Overland Expeditions (New York: Harper & Brothers, Publishers,1859) 260-63.
Hereafter sited as Marcy.
COMMENTS: Sibley wrote that the Survey Team camped near the mouth of Coon Creek. Relatively speaking, yes. Coon Creek emptied into the Arkansas River about 2 miles to the east of the camp. In 1965, the channel was changed so that the creek's mouth is now about 3/4 miles to the northeast of the campsite. Sibley called the stream Clear Creek. It came to be called Coon, or Raccoon Creek, and is presently labeled Big Coon Creek. The marker is set .1 mile northeast of the crossing according to the original township survey map.
LEGAL DESCRIPTION: SW 1/4, Section 12, T-23-S, R-18-W, Pawnee County, Kansas.
Township 23 South of Range 18 West, Pawnee County, Kansas
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