In 1834, a group of missionaries traveled west to the Oregonterritory. In the years that followed, many other settlers followed. The Oregon Trail began in St. Louis, Missouri and crossed over two thousand miles of plains and mountains, finally ending in the Willamette Valley in Oregon. The journey took four to six months and the travelers faced many hardships for the promise of a better life. Willamette Valley
The most popular starting point for the trip was St.Louis. Here families were faced with many decisions.What should we take, what do we need to leavebehind? Anything they took had to fit in the wagon.
Fort Kearny was built toprotect the emigrants on the Click to SeeOregon trail. It also provided a Ft. Kearnyplace for travelers to buysupplies and send mail tofriends and family back east.
The land was flat and seemed tostretch forever, until they came toChimney Rock.
Click to see Independence RockFrom Fort Laramie, the settlers journeyed on pastIndependence Rock. The south pass is a gap in the RockyMountains that stretches for miles. This provided an easierroute for the wagon trains to travel.
The Oregon Trail extended through what is now Idaho. It was also in this area that the trail split and the California trail began. The California trail was started after Gold was discovered in California in 1848. Many people were lured Legend to California by dreams of strikingCalifornia Trail it rich.Oregon Trail
Those who continued on the Oregon Trail, came to FortHall. This fort was originally built as a trading post for the furtraders. Now it was a stopping off point for the pioneers. Afterleaving Fort Hall, they traveled on through what is now Idaho andwere faced with an important decision. Should they cross theSnake River or take the overland route. Some chose to cross atThree Island Crossing. This was a direct route to Fort Boise andsaved some time, but the crossing was difficult and dangerous. Replica of Fort Hall
Even though the journey was almost over, Barlow Road a treacherousstretch still lay ahead. This toll road was built as an alternative tonavigating the Columbia River.Sarah Cummins (A traveler on the trail):"The traveling was slow and toilsome; slopes were almost impassible forman and beast. As night was coming on, it seemed we all must perish, butweak, faint and starving we went on. I could scarcely put one foot beforethe another. I weighed less than eighty pounds at the time. My own partyhad been 14 days with only nine biscuits and four small slices of bacon. "
After the Barlow Road, Oregon City was the next and finaldestination on the Oregon Trail. Here the settlers could visit the only land office west of the Rocky Mountains to file their claim. The land was rich and fertile, a welcoming place to settle.
There were many other trails and routes thatsettlers took to reach the west. The Oregon Trail was oneof the most used routes. In the 1860’s, people stopped using the trail, canyou guess why? Next Answer
Return to questionThe transcontinental railway was completed.
Clip Arthttp://www.endoftheoregontrail.org/wagons.html diagramhttp://www.pbs.org/opb/oregontrail/teacher/trailmap.htmlhttp://www3.memlane.com/gromboug/P14MvCon.htmwestern clip arthttp://www.isu.edu/~trinmich/Stlouis.html St. Louishttp://dir.nvtech.com/History/United_States/Old_West/Characters/PBack
Photographshttp://www.ruralheritage.com/drew/oregon.jpg wagon and oxenhttp://www.rpi.edu/~mccafr/oregon2.jpg williamette valleyhttp://www.nebraskahistory.org/sites/rock/ chimney rockhttp://www.isu.edu/~trinmich/qtvrkearny.htmlhttp://www.poky.net/forthall/index.shtml Fort Hall Replicahttp://www.isu.edu/~trinmich/Oregoncity.html
Texthttp://www.10960.com/webquest/gowest.htm web questhttp://www.endoftheoregontrail.org/faq.html FAQhttp://www.endoftheoregontrail.org/biomenu.html#PioFam Biographieshttp://www.isu.edu/~trinmich/Allabout.htmlhttp://xroads.virginia.edu/~HYPER/OREGON/oregon.htmlhttp://www.isu.edu/~trinmich/Oregontrail.htmlSound FilesAmerican Dreamer:Songs of Stephen Foster, Thomas HamptonThe Magnificent Seven, Elmer Bernstein