Madonna of the Trail

Madonna of the Trail: A Monumental Tribute to Pioneer Women in Upland, California


Standing proudly at 1010 Euclid Ave, Upland, CA 91786, the Madonna of the Trail monument is more than just a statue; it is a symbol of resilience, strength, and the indomitable spirit of pioneer women who played a crucial role in shaping the American West. Located near the intersection of Euclid Avenue and Arrow Highway, this iconic monument pays homage to the trailblazing women who braved the challenges of westward expansion. In this article, we delve into the history, significance, and the surrounding attractions that make the Madonna of the Trail an enduring tribute to the pioneers of yesteryear. Check this out

Location and Accessibility:

The Madonna of the Trail monument is centrally located at 1010 Euclid Ave, Upland, CA 91786. For those navigating, the major cross streets are Euclid Avenue and Arrow Highway. The monument’s accessibility is enhanced by its proximity to major freeways, with the I-10 providing convenient access for visitors from various parts of the Inland Empire and the Greater Los Angeles area.

Nearby Attractions within 3 Miles:

Within a three-mile radius of the Madonna of the Trail monument, visitors can explore a variety of attractions that complement their historical journey:

Cooper Regional History Museum:

Located less than a mile away, the Cooper Regional History Museum offers a deeper dive into the local history of Upland and the surrounding region.

Downtown Upland Historic District:

Approximately 2 miles away, the historic district of downtown Upland boasts charming shops, eateries, and well-preserved architecture, providing a glimpse into the city’s past.

San Antonio Winery – Ontario:

Situated around 3 miles away, the San Antonio Winery in nearby Ontario invites visitors to savor local wines and experience the heritage of California winemaking.

The Madonna of the Trail: A Historical Tribute:

Commissioned by the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR), the Madonna of the Trail monument series consists of 12 identical statues placed along the National Old Trails Road, a historic auto trail that stretched from Maryland to California. The statues were dedicated to honor the spirit of pioneer women who played a pivotal role in the westward expansion during the 19th and early 20th centuries.

The Upland Madonna of the Trail was the eleventh to be erected in the series and was dedicated on April 20, 1929. Sculpted by August Leimbach, each Madonna of the Trail monument features a pioneer woman with a child by her side, symbolizing the strength, courage, and nurturing spirit of the women who journeyed westward alongside their families.

Design and Symbolism:

The Madonna of the Trail stands at approximately ten feet in height and is crafted from locally sourced granite. The pioneer woman, dressed in period clothing, clutches a baby in one arm while holding a rifle in the other – a symbol of protection and fortitude. The child at her side represents the next generation born on the trail.

The monument is mounted on a sturdy base, inscribed with plaques detailing the historical significance of the Madonna of the Trail and the dedication to pioneer women. The monument’s timeless design and enduring symbolism have made it a revered landmark, connecting present-day communities with the courage and sacrifices of their foremothers.

Surrounding Landscape and Scenic Views:

The Madonna of the Trail in Upland is set against a backdrop of well-manicured greenery, providing a tranquil space for reflection and appreciation. The surrounding landscape is meticulously maintained, allowing visitors to enjoy the monument in a serene and picturesque setting. Benches and pathways enhance the overall experience, inviting visitors to spend time in contemplation or engage in conversations about the historical significance of the monument.

Community Events and Ceremonies:

The Madonna of the Trail monument in Upland serves as a focal point for community events, ceremonies, and historical commemorations. Annually, residents and visitors gather to pay tribute to the pioneer women who paved the way for the settlement of the American West. These events often include speeches, reenactments, and educational programs that highlight the challenges and triumphs of the pioneers.

Community engagement with the Madonna of the Trail monument fosters a sense of pride and connection to Upland’s history, creating opportunities for intergenerational dialogue and the passing down of stories from one era to the next.

Opening Hours and Visitor Information:

As of my last knowledge update in January 2022, the Madonna of the Trail monument in Upland is an outdoor public monument and is accessible year-round. The monument area is typically open to the public during daylight hours. Visitors are encouraged to check for any special events or ceremonies that may impact regular access. Top Attraction

For the most up-to-date information on opening hours, special events, and any additional guidelines for visitors, it is recommended to check with local Upland authorities or the Upland City website.

Preserving Heritage and Legacy:

The Madonna of the Trail monument in Upland stands as more than a historical marker; it is a living testament to the enduring legacy of pioneer women and their integral role in the westward expansion of the United States. The monument’s presence in Upland reflects the community’s commitment to preserving its heritage and acknowledging the sacrifices of those who paved the way for future generations.

By visiting the Madonna of the Trail, individuals not only pay homage to the past but also actively participate in the ongoing narrative of their community. The monument serves as a reminder that the strength and resilience exhibited by pioneer women continue to inspire and shape the character of Upland and the broader Inland Empire region.


The Madonna of the Trail monument in Upland, California, invites visitors to step back in time and connect with the spirit of the pioneer women who played an instrumental role in shaping the American West. Its timeless design, symbolic representation, and the serene surroundings make it a poignant destination for those seeking to appreciate the historical roots of their community. As the Madonna of the Trail stands tall against the changing landscape, it serves as a beacon of remembrance, ensuring that the stories of pioneer women endure for generations to come.

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