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Butterfield Overland Trail Special Resource Study/Environmental Assessment

National Trails System » Butterfield Overland Trail Special Resource Study/Environmental Assessment » Document List

Welcome to the Butterfield Overland Trail National Historic Trail Feasibility Study/Environmental Assessment Project!

The proposed Butterfield Overland Trail National Historic Trail commemorates the routes pioneered by John Butterfield and the Butterfield Overland Stage Company as they traveled over the "ox-box route" between the eastern termini of St. Louis, Missouri and Memphis, Tennessee and the western terminus of San Francisco, California. Stages traveled over this route between 1858 and 1861.

In recognition of the perceived national importance of these routes, and in response to public advocacy for the inclusion of these routes in the National Trails System, Congress passed legislation that was signed by President Obama on March 30, 2009 (Sec. 7209 of P.L. 111-11).

This section of the public law calls for a "special resource study along the route known as the 'Ox-Bow Route' of the Butterfield Overland Trail (referred to in this section as the 'route') in the States of Missouri, Tennessee, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, and California to evaluate—(1) a range of alternatives for protecting and interpreting the resources of the route, including alternatives for potential addition of the Trail to the National Trails System; and (2) the methods and means for the protection and interpretation of the route by the National Park Service, other Federal, State, or local government entities, or private or nonprofit organizations."

In compliance with P.L. 111-11, the National Trails Intermountain Region office of the National Park Service in Santa Fe, New Mexico, will complete a special resource study of the proposed Butterfield Overland Trail National Historic Trail.

The study shall be prepared as an Environmental Assessment, as authorized by recent revisions to Director's Order 12, in compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act, Council on Environmental Quality regulations, and Departmental and Service regulations. Advisory Council on Historic Preservation procedures for compliance with Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act shall be followed. All affected State Historic Preservation Offices and Tribal Historic Preservation Offices shall be consulted during the planning process. Section 106 consultation requirements also will be followed in partnership with interested parties and cooperators.

Public meetings for scoping purposes were completed in Spring 2012. A planning newsletter has been posted for your information and review. The draft document is currently under internal NPS review and is projected to be released to the public in the summer of 2016. Please refer to this website for project updates.

Thank you for your interest in this planning project.

Aaron Mahr
National Trails Intermountain Region

Contact Information
Michael Elliott
Chief of Planning
National Park Service
National Trails Intermountain Region
P.O. Box 728
Santa Fe, New Mexico 87504