Future Of Pioneer Grave Along Mormon Trail In Nebraska Now In Question

Jul 9, 2019, 7:54 PM | Updated: 7:57 pm

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah –  A downtown monument commemorates Brigham Young welcoming Mormon pioneers to Utah, but not all of the pioneers reached their destination.

“I am her fourth great grandson,” said Jacob Oscarson, who knows one of his ancestors never made it.

Rebecca Winters died of cholera along the trail in Nebraska, in 1852.

“A member of the wagon train carved her name into an old metal wagon tire and buried it with her,” he said.

The grave was largely forgotten, until the early 1900’s when the railroad came through.  The train tracks were laid, just six feet from her resting place.  In 1996, her grave was moved away from the tracks, to a safer location, about 900 feet away, but still along the original Mormon Trail.

“Her story I think is very worthy of being remembered and told and it is done so  much better, right there where she died,” Oscarson added.

But in recent years, a lack of maintenance prompted local Latter-day Saints to improve the gravesite, only to learn the property was owned by Scott Bluffs county, and officials there have shown little interest in preserving the site.

“The county can’t force us to move the grave, it’s something that the family is choosing to do, just because the county does have the authority to say ‘no maintenance’ or just say ‘we’re going to fence it off,’” he said.

It is believed that Rebecca Winters likely has more than 1000 living descendants,  many of them in Utah, so Oscarson is hoping to get a consensus on what they believe should happen with her grave.

Options include moving Winter’s remains to a cemetery or a nearby museum, along the Oregon Trail.

“She did not travel the Oregon Trail, she traveled the Mormon Trail, so my personal preference would be to try to work with the county and some of the local people and see if we can come up with some sort of agreement where we can keep her grave right there along the trail,” he said.

Oscarson has created a website, www.rebeccawinters.org, in hopes that other descendants of Winters will get involved and provide direction and even financial support.    An effort to preserve her final resting place and more importantly, her history, for future generations.

“There are very few places where you can go and actually see a grave that’s been marked and you can say ‘we know the story of the person who’s here’ and for that reason I think it’s very important that her grave is maintained.”

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories


Luanne Monson

Get Gephardt: Denied Departure TONIGHT 10PM

Follow @KSL5TVLike us on Facebook
6 days ago
Luanne Monson

Get Gephardt: Denied Departure MONDAY 10PM

Follow @KSL5TVLike us on Facebook
6 days ago
Luanne Monson

Get Gephardt: Falsely Accused TONIGHT 10PM

Follow @KSL5TVLike us on Facebook
8 days ago
Luanne Monson

Get Gephardt: Falsely Accused TOMORROW 10PM

Follow @KSL5TVLike us on Facebook
8 days ago
Luanne Monson

KSL Investigates: Drug Testing Doubt TONIGHT 10PM

Follow @KSL5TVLike us on Facebook
14 days ago
Luanne Monson

KSL Investigates: Drug Testing Doubt MONDAY 10PM

Follow @KSL5TVLike us on Facebook
14 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Happy diverse college or university students are having fun on their graduation day...
BYU MBA at the Marriott School of Business

How to Choose What MBA Program is Right for You: Take this Quiz Before You Apply!

Wondering what MBA program is right for you? Take this quiz before you apply to see if it will help you meet your goals.
Close up of an offset printing machine during production...
Les Olson IT

Top 7 Reasons to Add a Production Printer to Your Business

Learn about the different digital production printers and how they can help your company save time and money.
vintage photo of lighting showroom featuring chandeliers, lamps, wall lights and mirrors...
Lighting Design

History of Lighting Design | Over 25 Years of Providing Utah With the Latest Trends and Styles

Read about the history of Lighting Design, a family-owned and operated business that paved the way for the lighting industry in Utah.
Fiber Optical cables connected to an optic ports and Network cables connected to ethernet ports...
Brian Huston, CE and Anthony Perkins, BICSI

Why Every Business Needs a Structured Cabling System

A structured cabling system benefits businesses by giving you faster processing speeds and making your network more efficient and reliable.
notebook with password notes highlighted...
PC Laptops

How to Create Strong Passwords You Can Actually Remember

Learn how you can create strong passwords that are actually easy to remember! In a short time you can create new ones in seconds.
house with for rent sign posted...
Chase Harrington, president and COO of Entrata

Top 5 Reasons You May Want to Consider Apartment Life Over Owning a Home

There are many benefits of renting that can be overshadowed by the allure of buying a home. Here are five reasons why renting might be right for you.
Future Of Pioneer Grave Along Mormon Trail In Nebraska Now In Question