Synopses & Reviews
In the mid-1800s, thousands of hardy pioneers braved the long and arduous journey across the Great Plains for a chance to build a new life in the West. These emigrants traveled more than 2,000 treacherous miles to the Pacific Ocean over the Oregon Trail in what became the largest mass migration in American history. Along the way they wrote letters and kept diaries, and some published memoirs of their trip years after their journey.
Oregon Trail Stories offers a selection of these intriguing narratives told in the pioneers' own words. From the diary of a member of the Donner Party to an excerpt from the memoirs of a girl orphaned as her family made their way West, these documents speak of the difficulties of facing an uncertain future and the hardships of the trail - including the very real threat of illness or death - and are an enduring reminder of our country's history.
Today almost all traces of the Oregon Trail have been obliterated by settlement, but these stories of courage, stamina, and adventure in the wide-open West survive, offering readers a fascinating first-hand account of life on the trail during America's long-gone frontier days.
Travel along the Oregon Trail with the pioneers who dared to "face the elephant" as they moved west in search of a new life. Compiled from the trail diaries and memoirs that document this momentous period in American history, Oregon Trail Stories
is a fascinating look at the great American migration of the 19th century.
Beginning in the early 1840s, literature about the West turned a trickle of hardy pioneers braving the Great Plains for a chance at a new life in the far West into a rushing torrent. Thousands chose to travel the more than 2,000 miles to the Pacific Ocean over the Oregon Trail, writing letters, diaries, and journals as they went and memoirs of their trips years after the fact. Their stories speak of the difficulties of their decision and the hardships of the trail.
The courage and fortitude of the emigrants in the largest mass migration in this country's history is perhaps what makes their stories so fascinating to us even today, but ever since the first wagon train "jumped off" from Missouri and headed west, the public has had an appetite for the tales of their adventures. Contemporary newspapers published excerpts from overland diaries, journals, and letters, inspiring many to follow in their writers' footsteps. This book offers a selection of these stories, told in their own words. Today, almost all traces of the Oregon Trail have been obliterated by settlement, but these accounts of courage, stamina, and adventure survive.
About the Author
Compiled from diaries, letters, and memoirs written about the great American migration of the 19th century, including Lansford Hastings, Catherine Sager Pringle, Narcissa Whitman, and others.