Covered Wagon Women, Volume 8
Diaries and Letters from the Western Trails, 1862-1865
Kenneth L. Holmes
Publisher: University of Nebraska Press
Imprint: Bison Books
eBook ISBN: 9780803276925
The overland trails in the 1860s witnessed the creation of stage
stations to facilitate overland travel. These stations, placed
every twenty or thirty miles, ensured that travelers would be able
to obtain grain for their livestock and food for themselves. They
also sped up the process of mail delivery to remote Western
outposts. Tragically, the easing of overland travel coincided with
renewed conflicts with the Cheyenne and other Plains Indians. The
massacre of Black Kettle’s people at Sand Creek instigated two
years of bloody reprisals and counterreprisals. "Amid this turmoil
and change, these daring women continued to build on the example
set by earlier women pioneers. As Harriet Loughary wrote upon her
arrival in California, "[after] two thousands of miles in an ox
team, making an average of eighteen miles a day enduring privations
and dangers . . . When we think of the earliest pioneers . . . we
feel an untold gratitude towards them."
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Kenneth L. Holmes was a professor of history at Western Oregon State College. He edited and compiled Covered Wagon Women, drawing on archives and private sources.
Introducing this Bison Books edition is Maria Montoya, an assistant professor of history and an assistant professor in the Program in American Culture at the University of Michigan.