LA JUNTA, Colorado, September 20, 2017 – The U.S. Forest Service is delighted to announce the designation of the 210-acre Santa Fe Trail Mountain Route Trail – Iron Springs Vicinity National Historic District. It is located in Otero County, Colorado on the Comanche National Grassland and listed on the National Register of Historic Places. This designation is the result of a partnership between the National Park Service, Colorado State Historical Fund and History Colorado.
The Comanche National Grassland is home to over 21 miles of the original Mountain Route of the Santa Fe Trail. To access the National Register listed trail segments near Iron Springs, travel the Santa Fe Trail National Scenic and Historic Byway (CO Highway 350) southwest of La Junta to the Iron Springs Interpretative Site (about 28 miles). The original routes are marked by a series of limestone posts.
The National Register of Historic Places is the official federal list of districts, sites, buildings, structures, and objects significant in American history, architecture, archaeology, engineering, and culture. These contribute to an understanding of the historical and cultural foundations of the nation. Authorized under the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966, the National Register is part of a national program to coordinate and support public and private efforts to identify, evaluate, and protect our historic and archaeological resources. In Colorado there are over 1,600 properties listed in the National Register and over 2,100 listed in the State Register. Properties listed in the National or State Registers may be eligible for investment or for grants from the State Historical Fund, another program of Historic Colorado.
For additional information about Santa Fe National Historic Trail or the Comanche National Grassland, call 719-384-2181 or visit the following web sites: www.fs.usda.gov/goto/psicc/com and www.nps.gov/safe.