Madonna of the Trail

Coordinates: 34°06′26″N 117°39′04″W / 34.1071694°N 117.6512444444°W / 34.1071694; -117.6512444444
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Madonna of the Trail
Albuquerque Madonna
LocationMarble Ave. and 4th St.
Albuquerque, New Mexico
BuiltSeptember 27, 1928
ArchitectAugust Leimbach
DesignatedMarch 21, 2006
Reference no.06000151
Madonna of the Trail California Historical Monument
Madonna of the Trail, 1928
LocationNorth Euclid Avenue, Upland, California
Coordinates34°06′26″N 117°39′04″W / 34.1071694°N 117.6512444444°W / 34.1071694; -117.6512444444
ArchitectAugust Leimbach
DesignatedNovember 7, 1998
Reference no.1028
Madonna of the Trail is located in California
Madonna of the Trail
Location of Madonna of the Trail California Historical Monument in California

Madonna of the Trail is a series of 12 identical monuments dedicated to the spirit of pioneer women in the United States. The monuments were commissioned by the National Society of Daughters of the American Revolution (NSDAR). They were installed in each of the 12 states along the National Old Trails Road, which extended from Cumberland, Maryland, to Upland, California.

Created by sculptor August Leimbach and funded by contributions, the Madonna of the Trail monuments were intended to provide a symbol of the courage and faith of the women whose strength and love aided so greatly in conquering the wilderness and establishing permanent homes. Dedicated in 1928 and 1929, the twelve statues became sources of local pride. Through the continuing efforts of local and national groups, all are currently in good condition and on display.

Map all coordinates using: OpenStreetMap


Some Madonna of the Trail monuments have become community landmarks.

On June 2, 2020, the Upland, California Madonna of the Trail monument was the site of a Black Lives Matter protest in the wake of the murder of George Floyd.[1]

Design and specifications[edit]

Cooper's Sacajawea and Jean-Baptiste


There is one monument in each of the 12 states along the National Old Trails Highway (much of which later became U.S. Highway 40 and U.S. Highway 66).[2] The monuments, in order of dedication, are:

State Image Location Dedicated Notes
Maryland Bethesda

Wisconsin Ave. and Old Georgetown Rd.

Has long been the only one facing east. In December 2004, the statue was temporarily removed to repair its foundation. An alert reporter for the Washington Post noted that as it was placed on the flatbed truck, the Madonna faced west, believed to be the first time all 12 have done so.[3]
Pennsylvania Beallsville

US Rt. 40, across from Nemacolin Country Club,12 mi. E of Washington, PA

West Virginia Wheeling

US Rt. 40, across from Overlook Condominium
40°03′21″N 80°40′09″W / 40.055797°N 80.669215°W / 40.055797; -80.669215 (West Virginia)

July 7, 1928[4] Contributing structure in the National Road Corridor Historic District
Ohio Springfield

US Rt. 40 - Snyder's Park. Placed some ten blocks from the National Old Trails Highway

Ohio's Madonna was moved in 2011 to the new National Road Commons park in downtown Springfield. The statue faces south for better visibility on Main Street (Route 40).[5]
Indiana Richmond

Glenn Miller Park, US 40 East and N 22 St.

Illinois Vandalia

SE corner of the Old State House

Missouri Lexington

Main St. and Jack's Ford Rd.

Kansas Council Grove

Union and Main St.

September 7, 1928 Listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The Council Grove statue is one of three along the Santa Fe Trail route. Council Grove was chosen for a statue in part due to its historic connections to the trail and in part because the town planned to build a memorial park around the statue.[6]
Colorado Lamar

S Main St. and Beech St.

New Mexico Albuquerque

4th and Marble NW
35°05′34″N 106°38′59″W / 35.092897°N 106.649820°W / 35.092897; -106.649820 (New Mexico)

September 27, 1928 Listed in the National Register of Historic Places. Originally located in McClellan Park, it was moved in 1996 when the park was demolished to build the Pete V. Domenici United States Courthouse. After restoration work, the monument was installed at the northwest corner of the courthouse grounds, where it was rededicated on September 27, 1998.[7][8][9]
Arizona Springerville

US Rt. 60 (Main St.) across from Post Office

California Upland

Center divider on Euclid Avenue just north of Foothill Boulevard

34°06′26″N 117°39′04″W / 34.1071694°N 117.6512444444°W / 34.1071694; -117.6512444444

Marker in Upland reads:

Dedicated in 1929, the Madonna of the Trail is one of twelve identical statues placed in twelve states by the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution. The statues, differentiated by the inscriptions on their bases, commemorate the westward move of American civilization on a series of trails, which eventually linked the country from the Atlantic to the Pacific. They especially pay tribute to the importance of a national highway and the role of pioneer women. The statue was designed by German-born architectural sculptor August Leimbach and inspired by a statue of Sacagawea in Portland, Oregon. The Upland monument is said to represent four historic trails: the Mojave Trail, the de Anza Trail, the Emigrant Trail, and the Canyon Road. [10]


Further reading[edit]

  • Bauer, Fern Ioula (1984). The Historic Treasure Chest of the Madonna of the Trail Monuments. Springfield, Ohio: J. McEnaney Print. ASIN B0006EG8TM.
  • Prescott, Cynthia C. (Summer 2021). Turpie, David C. (ed.). "Myth, Memory, and the Limits of Inclusivity in Arizona Pioneer Monuments". 62 (2). Tucson, AZ: Arizona Historical Society: 173–206. ISSN 0021-9053. {{cite journal}}: Cite journal requires |journal= (help)

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Scauzillo, Steve (June 2, 2020). "Black Lives Matters protesters being met with opposition — a new trend?". Daily Bulletin. Retrieved June 3, 2020.
  2. ^ Kirby, Doug (May 12, 2006). "Mother Roads: A guide to U.S. mom-uments". NBC News. Retrieved November 13, 2017.
  3. ^ Barr, Cameron W. (December 11, 2004). "Listing Madonna Rescued in Bethesda". The Washington Post.
  4. ^ "Dedication of the Madonna of the Trails Monument". Wheeling Daily News. July 7, 1928.
  5. ^ "Madonna of the Trail". Touring Ohio. Ohio City Productions.
  6. ^ Spencer, Brenda; Spencer, Michelle (November 1, 2017). "National Register of Historic Places Registration Form: Madonna of the Trail" (PDF). Kansas Historical Society. Retrieved April 23, 2022.
  7. ^ Sanders, Jeffrey C. (2004). McClellan Park: The Life and Death of an Urban Green Space. Albuquerque: The Albuquerque Museum.
  8. ^ Steinberg, David (June 26, 1998). "Spirit of pioneer women lives on". Albuquerque Journal. Retrieved May 18, 2018.
  9. ^ "New Mexico Madonna of the Trail". National Park Service.
  10. ^ Delja, Beatrice; Delja, Denis. "CHL No. 1028 Madonna of the Trail - San Bernadino". California Historical Landmarks.

External links[edit]