The Oregon Trail: An American Saga

The Oregon Trail: An American Saga

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by David Dary
     
 


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,… See more details below

Overview


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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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780195224009
Publisher:
Oxford University Press, USA
Publication date:
11/15/2005
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
432
Sales rank:
825,520
Product dimensions:
9.20(w) x 6.00(h) x 1.40(d)

Table of Contents

Ch. 1The exploration of Oregon3
Ch. 2Astoria20
Ch. 3Discovering the Oregon Trail34
Ch. 4John McLoughlin and the missionaries47
Ch. 5The American occupation of Oregon66
Ch. 6The emigrants of 184384
Ch. 7Self-rule and more emigrants109
Ch. 8Fifty-four forty or fight128
Ch. 9The year of decision147
Ch. 10New Zion, more emigrants, and a massacre168
Ch. 11A lull before the rush187
Ch. 12The gold rush of 1849200
Ch. 13The hectic year of 1850221
Ch. 14The changing road243
Ch. 15More change and civil war264
Ch. 16Decline of the Trail288
Ch. 17Rebirth of the Trail310
App. AHistoric landmarks335
App. BCutoffs and other roads349

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