...Just one of many points of interest along the stretch of Route 66 that crosses through the Mojave Desert.  The town has seen better days, but Senator Feinstein's proposed California Desert Protection Act of 2010 (CDPA 2010) would place this town and many other places along the historic Route 66 within the boundaries of the Mojave Trails National Monument.  Ludlow was a water stop for the railroad as early as 1882, and also hosted miners with a hardy American spirit prospecting nearby hills for ore.

While much of the debate surrounding CDPA 2010 in the coming year is certain to focus on a parochially characterized clash between environmental and economic interests, we should not forget that within the Mojave Desert lies our national heritage intertwined with a natural heritage.  American Indians, settlers, homesteaders, the economic migrants of the Great Depression, and generations of military recruits and test pilots have all experienced the vast open wilderness and harsh solitude of the Mojave Desert.  CDPA 2010, if approved by Congress, would go beyond protecting part of a fragile ecosystem, it would preserve a national experience for future Americans.  You can read one of my more recent CDPA posts here.

Abandoned Structure in Ludlow, California (January 2010)


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