Westward Expansion What was the purpose of traveling out west?

When people thought of Oregon, they thought of an amazing place. They heard that the land was good for farming, flowers bloomed all year, and that there was plenty of land that you could get for free. They even heard that there were rivers and streams with small fish. Settlers wanted to make a better life for them and their family.

Pros and cons for being on the Oregon Trail
  • CONS
  • On the ride the settlers would get sick from a disease, and most of the time die.
  • There would be really bad weather, so it would be hard to do anything.
  • There would be lots of mud, and the mud made it really hard to move the wagon, cattle, and to walk in.
  • Pros
  • At night, the settlers would stop to rest and looked at the stars when the were laying.
  • When you were done with chores, then sometimes they would be aloud to explore, if you didn't got to far from the wagon.
  • The settlers would gather around a fire, and sing songs, and dance at night.
How Did They Know Were To Go

There wasn't such thing as a GPS when they were traveling, so they had to make up their own strategy. They would look at trees, rocks, and water holes. The trees would sometimes be curved in different ways, the rocks could have funny shapes, and the water could look different colors, and it could taste different. They just had to remember which one was were.

What Was It Like With Natives Around

Sometimes, the settlers would pass by a few Natives on their way. Some of them were friendly, and some were not friendly. If you met some nice Indians, then they would trade with you. The Indians wanted cloth, red paint, glass beads, and metal fishing hooks. Some Indians would get mad that all of these strange people were crossing their land, so they would fight the settlers. But, there wasn't much fighting in that time, so it didn't happen very often.

What Was The Difference Betwene Home, And Being On The Trail

On the trail it was very different than being at home. The settlers would have to be aware of all the wild animals and mean Indians. If wild animals tried to do anything to them, hopefully, they would have something to deal with them with, because wild animals can be pretty vicious. At home they could be making meals and doing other stuff that they couldn't do on the trail.

One Interesting Fact

One interesting fact about the wagons is, when they were going down steep hills, sometimes they would cut their wagons short to were there were only two weels on the wagon.


Created with images by BLMOregon - "NHOTIC_2" • BLMOregon - "On the Oregon Trail"

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