The Oregon Trail: An American Saga
In today's world of jet airplanes and smooth highways, it is nearly impossible to imagine the hardships faced by the thousands of people who headed west along the great Oregon Trail. In this detailed and engaging account, historian David Dary recounts the full saga of the trail's history, from its creation in the early 1800's, to its peak during the '49 Gold Rush, its rapid decline following the completion of the transcontinental railroad, and finally, its revival as a modern day historical treasure.
Dary introduces us to the pioneers: trailblazers, fur-traders, and missionaries, who made the first journeys to Oregon County, an internationally disputed territory comprising present-day Washington, Oregon, and California. We learn of the road's steadily increasing popularity, as economic problems or the promise of adventure and wealth lead thousands of homesteaders, gold-rushers, and entrepreneurs to pile their hopes and dreams into wagons and head west. Using journals and letters, as well as company and expedition reports, public records and newspaper stories, Dary takes us inside the day to day experiences of the travelers, as they risked ruin at every step from disease, weather, and human deceit. Trail.
Through Dary's expert and comprehensive history, we learn how the events of the day turned a small trickle of pioneering men and women into the greatest mass migration in American history.
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THE OREGON TRAIL: An American SagaUser Review - Jane Doe - Kirkus
Dary follows the Oregon Trail, pre-history to post-history, with many nooks and crannies in between.From the early 1840s until the coming of the transcontinental railroad in 1869, the Oregon Trail was ... Read full review
LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - Shrike58 - LibraryThing
What comes through in this book is the author's fascination with the romance of the settler's wagon train; the core of the narrative being the first-person accounts of people who went through the ... Read full review
The Exploration of Oregon
Discovering the Oregon Trail
John Mcloughlin and the Missionaries
The American Occupation of Oregon
The Emigrants of 1843
Selfrule and More Emigrants
Fiftyfour Forty or Fight
The Changing Road
More Change and Civil War
Decline of the Trail
Rebirth of the Trail
Cutoffs and Other Roads