Virginia Reed Murphy's Across the Plains in the Donner Party PDF

By Virginia Reed Murphy

This tragic tale of Virginia Reed?s trip west is advised via her memoirs of the twelve-year-old lady, with supplementary bills in keeping with her father's letters and the diary of one other vacationer. Given the delicate nature of features of the adventure, younger readers will locate the heritage notes and explanatory reviews valuable. Maps and diverse reproductions incorporated.

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Additional info for Across the Plains in the Donner Party

Sample text

The Donners had been behind us. When informed that crossing the mountains was impossible, they de-cided to stay put in Alder Creek Valley, five miles below the lake. They were, if possible, in a worse condition than ourselves. We at least had the old building. The Donners were forced to live in shelters made mostly from brush topped with pine boughs. When the first storm ended, we prepared the best we could to try to survive the winter. The men built two double shelters, which were known as the MurphyEddy cabin and the Reed-Graves cabin.

Made about four miles today. March 5 After breakfast, I had two scanty meals left for all. I sent ahead three of my best men, one to bring up the first cache, the others the second. After a fatiguing day, arrived at a spot called Starved Camp at the head of the Juba River. Here my men began to fail, being for several days on half allowance or one and a half pints of gruel [a thin, cooked cereal, such as oatmeal] per day. The sky looks like snow, and everything indicates a storm. God forbid. Wood being got 53 for the night and boughs for the beds of all.

Virginia's father had little opportunity to send letters to friends in Illinois immediately after he was exiled from the wagon train. So, his account in Part II is told through excerpts from two new sources, a newspaper article and passages from his diary, which was started in February 1847. The article, “Narrative of the Suffering of a Company of Emigrants in the Mountains of California in the Winter of 184647,” describes Reed's life-and-death struggle after he left the wagon train. Reed made many notes about his experiences afterward, and these notes were used by a reporter, J.

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Across the Plains in the Donner Party by Virginia Reed Murphy


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