History Hero: Briana Vaughan

Briana Vaughan is helping save and preserve historic trails carved by Native Americans centuries ago. In the old days tribes on the east side of the Sierra Nevada forged trails up through gaps or passes in the mountains — to trade with tribes on the west side of the mountains coming up from what is now California’s Central Valley.  We met up with her and a group of young members of the Bishop Paiute tribe riding mules up McGee Pass to do maintenance work on the trail. She loves working with young people who loved the mules and horses that took them into the high country —and are learning about their own history.  Background on Briana. Many of the trails used first by mountain men in the early 18 hundreds, and then the wagon trains in the early 1840’s, were forced  years before by various Native American Tribes — in large part as trading routes.  Perhaps no pass is more important than South Pass over the continental divide in Wyoming first discovered by Native Americans. It allowed the wagon trains to cross over the rocky mountains in a slow sloping climb.  Countless routes discovered by the tribes are now the same routes used by roads, freeways and train tracks.

You can meet Briana in our special program under construction called Great Road West.


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“History Heroes” are profiles of people young and old we meet along the way sharing their love of the past.

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