Raveled Ends of the Cord

The old Overland Trail, taken as a whole, is rightly spoken of as the cord that held the East and West together during the troubled years before the Civil War. It is composed of several strands which are united as a complete, intermingled thread only for the passage of the Rocky Mountains [through South Pass], springing widely apart at either end. On the eastern terminus these strands, in turn, ravel out into a confusion of small roads—feeders from the frontier towns.