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July 11, 2014 09:46 AM

Historic Cattle Trail Marked In 2 SD Cities

Spearfish, SD

Posts marking the Great Western Cattle Trail have been put in the ground in the western South Dakota cities of Belle Fourche and Spearfish.

The markers were dedicated in a ceremony during the Great Western Cattle Trail Association's recent annual meeting in Spearfish.

The 1,800-mile trail was started shortly after the Civil War when ranchers returned to their Texas homes to find their cattle herds neglected and in need of feed. From 1866-1897, the cowboys pushed their herds north to Dodge City, Kansas, and then to several destinations in the High Plains.

The association in 2003 launched a project to mark the trail with a cement post every 6 miles. The first marker was dedicated at Altus, Oklahoma, that year.

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