Local History Index
Culture & Society
Local History Index
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Santa fe Trail
Milo M Quaife
William a Goff
'Equipping Ourselves in Every Possible Way': Contents of Wagons on the 1851 Oregon Trail
This article starts out: "Before deciding to make a cross-country trip, anyone with common sense would certainly give considerable thought to what supplies would be needed to make that journey." Early...
A Fragmentary Journal of William L. Sublette
June 1, 1919
William Sublette's record of the beginning of a trip made with Sir William Drummond Stewart to the Rocky Mountains in 1843 (entries for May 1 through June 10). Journal includes detailed expense accounting...
A History of Travel in America
Appendices K and L of the book in the form of excerpts from mid-19th century travel books with advice for overland travelers to California to start at "Independence or St. Joseph, Mo." using a certain...
A Missouri Forty-Niner's Trip Across the Plains
October 1, 1948
Letter from James Evans to his brother, Ellis G. Evans, detailing his October 27, 1850 journey from Missouri to California in 1850. His account is an expressive litany of woes including Indian hostility,...
A Stage Ride To Colorado
Story of a stage ride across the plains on the Smoky Hill route, starting at Atchison, Kansas, on November 17, 1865, and arriving in Denver, Colorado, in 15 days on December 2, 1865. Gives a great deal...
A Summer on the Plains
Author recounts a stage ride on the Smoky Hill route into Kansas and being with General Hancock, General Custer and General Sherman and the cavalry dealing with the Indians, especially the Cheyennes. Mentions...
Across the Plains in a Prairie Schooner
March 1, 1933
Excerpts from the diary of Elizabeth Keyes which she kept on her trip from St. Joseph, Missouri to Fort Collins, Colorado. The diary entries begin on April 11, 1866 and end on June 2.
Information on Alexander Majors, a prominent western freighter based in Kansas City before the Civil War, with photos and illustrations.
Along the Santa Fe Trail
File contains a comprehensive article on the history of the Santa Fe Trail (corresponding largely to the history of Kansas City), starting in 1821 with Mexico's independence from Spain and continuing until...
Alphonso Wetmore's Report of a Journey to Santa Fe in 1828
Alphonso Wetmore's 1831 report to the U.S. Senate describing the early freight trade with Mexico on the Santa Fe Trail. Includes introduction with biographical information about Wetmore.
An Emigrants' Guide for Women: Making the Necessary Preparations for the Arduous Five-Month Journey along the Oregon Trail
[F]ictionalized facsimile of an 1850 guidebook written by a woman for women on preparing for journeys to the West, with illustrations and map. Description of various factors affecting women in particular...
An Incident on the Upper Arkansas in 1864
This article was written for the Kansas State Historical Society by Col. Milton Moore of Kansas City, Missouri. Tale of a wagon train and Indian attack in western Kansas close to Fort Dodge. Includes a...
Ask the Marshall
Brief item describing the typical day in the life of a person travelling by covered wagon on the Oregon or California Trails from Missouri.
Bicentennial Wagon Train Pilgrimage
Book celebrating the United States Bicentennial and its wagon train expeditions across the West, filled with photos, illustrations, maps, and reproduced paintings.
Biography of A. J. Purvis
Autobiographical article about A. J. Purvis (1834-1919), a native of Montgomery County, Missouri, and a western wagon train member passing through the Kansas City area in 1853 on the way to the Great Salt...
Bookin' West: Tall Tales and "Books of Every Sort and Size From Fanny Hill to The Bible" on The Journey West
This bibliographic essay examines the books widely read in the nineteenth century that had an influence on pioneers. It includes extracts from various journals and letters of pioneers that mention the...
Bus Driver Says Jogger May Have Taken Ride
Photo and biographical article about the 8-day jogging trip of Kansas Citian Phil Saad (and self-styled "King of the Joggers") from Denver to Kansas City reportedly being partly by bus.
Bypaths of Kansas History: Santa Fe and the West in 1841
Reprint from the New York Tribune of an 1841 letter from a Santa Fe merchant to his friend in Iowa, describing hiscaravan journey from Saint Louis through Missouri and Kansas to New Mexico (then part of...
Captain Ford's Journal of an Expedition to the Rocky Mountains
Edited journals of Captain Lemuel Ford (1788-1850) with commentary about his military expedition under Colonel Henry Dodge in 1835 "through the present states of Nebraska, Colorado, and Kansas" and returning...
Crossing the Great Plains: A Sesquicentennial Look at the 1847 Mormon Pioneer Trek West
Article "analyz[ing] the motives forcing the Mormons to venture west [from 1847 to 1897], observ[ing] several unique features that made the Mormon Trail experience different from that of other overland...
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