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Donner Memorial State Park & Emigrant Trail Musuem

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The Donner Memorial State Park and Emigrant Trail Museum honor one of the darkest moments in American pioneering. Here, you'll find a great stone pedestal commemorating the Donner Party, the legendary pioneers who fell victim to the harsh Sierra Nevada winter in 1846-47. The party (originally consisting of 89 members) was en route to California when their wagon train encountered a severe snow storm. Only 49 pioneers survived (many by resorting to cannibalism). The stone marker near the Emigrant Trail Museum stands 22 feet tall, marking the immense amount of snowfall from that winter.