Old-timey wagon train to travel through Carroll County

Thursday, June 28, 2012
Berryville Chamber of Commerce Director Ginger Oaks remembers when her family members road the wagon train across Carroll County. Pictured are Clifford and Otto Webb (front); standing Sheila Webb and Marlene Webb and the children in back. Photo courtesy of the Carroll County Historical & Genealogical Society, Inc.

BERRYVILLE -- In the days when wagon trains traveled the country exploring the new land, settlers from the east navigated through the Ozarks and some stayed to populate the area.

In celebration of those wagon train days, the John Henry Shaddox Wagon Train, that is a replicated the adventure rides from the frontier, is again making its way through the Carroll County.

Since 1976 many have made the annual 100-mile trek from Harrison to Springdale in covered wagons, buggies and on horseback. Berryville's Chamber of Commerce Director Ginger Oaks had family members involved in the original trips.

"My aunt and uncle used to load up their wagon with all my cousins and make the trip just like in the frontier days," Oaks said. "To me, it would be fun to talk to those people, because they do it just like it was done then. They find fresh water and cook over an open fire."

Clifford and Marlene Webb, of Oaks' family, use to make the trek through Carroll County dressed in frontier costume and enjoying the fellowship of the many other families who joined the wagon train.

"I would have loved to have talked to them about what it was like to do that," Oaks said.

The John Henry Shaddox Wagon Train began as a few people with wagons. They got permission from land owners from Harrison to Springdale where many have made special stops for the train as it nears river valleys.

Eventually, the event grew into family vacations. Now it has reached it's 46th year and will be in Carroll County this Friday.

The wagon train began on Thursday with its arrival at Carrollton Park, south of Alpena. This morning, the train departed Carrolton Park and followed Hwy 412 to CR 920 to CR 995, stopping for lunch at Fry Farms.

This afternoon, the trek continues to CR 9951 to Hwy 103S, then on to CR 719 arriving at the Pam Webb Farm by 5 p.m.

On Saturday, July 1, the wagon train departs the Webb Farm at 9 a.m. and follows CR 719 to Hwy 21S to CR 516, then on to CR 519 for lunch. From there, the train takes CR 516 on into Madison Co.

A first aid station is located along the route at Swallow Drive near Hwy 103 South.

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