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National and State Registers of Historic Places

Santa Fe Trail - Rice County Segment 2 (Fry's Ruts)

Picture of property Avenue P near 30th Road
Little River (Rice County)
Listed in National Register Aug 6, 2013

Architect: N/A
Category: transportation
Thematic Nomination: Historic Resources of the Santa Fe Trail (Amended 2013)

The Santa Fe Trail - Rice County Segment 2, also known as Fry's Ruts, is a 13-acre remnant of the main route of the trail, which was active from 1821 until 1880, though the association of this site with the trail ends in 1866 with the coming of the railroad. This trail remnant was associated with the Little Arkansas River crossings about one mile northeast of this site. As the trail approached the river from the east, it split into two branches four miles to the east of the crossing; the branches converged a little over one mile southwest of the crossing, immediately west of this site. This split of the main route was most likely due to the condition of the two crossings at the river, which were one-quarter mile apart. Scouts would ride ahead to determine which crossing was safest and least difficult to cross and direct the caravan accordingly. This site is nationally significant under Criteria A and D for its association with the transportation and commerce along the Santa Fe Trail and for its potential to yield important archeological information. It was nominated as part of the "Historic Resources of the Santa Fe Trail" multiple property nomination.

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