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The Plains Across: The Overland Emigrants and the Trans-Mississippi West, 1840-60
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The Plains Across: The Overland Emigrants and the Trans-Mississippi West, 1840-60

4.43 of 5 stars 4.43  ·  rating details  ·  37 ratings  ·  8 reviews
The most honored book ever released by the University of Illinois Press, The Plains Across was the result of more than a decade's work by its author. Here, on the occasion of the 150th anniversary of the opening of the Oregon Trail, is a paperback reissue that includes the notes, bibliography, and illustrations contained in the 1979 cloth edition.
Paperback, Abridged, 592 pages
Published October 1st 1993 by University of Illinois Press (first published January 1st 1992)
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Pretty academic treatment about how many people emigrated West. The text is about numbers and of emigrants in the 18th centruy, and what the newspapers and politicians were saying for and against emigrating.
K.A. Krisko
This was the second in a series of antebellum western emigrant histories that I read (following Hard Road West, Meldhal). Unfortunately, it's the only such book Unruh will ever write (he's dead). It's a good overview of the different types of people and the reasons behind the different waves of emigration. It's arranged by topic rather than sequentially, which I found a little difficult at times. There are sections that are basically a literature review; it's more of a thesis than a reader's boo ...more
This book is a very comprehensive volume on the Oregon and California trails. It seems to cover every aspect of the journey from preparation to arrival; and the trials the emigrants went through to get to the other side of the Sierra Nevadas. I highly recommend this book for students of the American West, specifically of Westward migration.
This is an incredible book telling of the cross country wagon train experience. It tells so much more than we are accustomed to hearing. About the eastbound traffic, the casualties from gun accidents, the relief expeditions for the West Coast, the competition in jumping off places. This is a totally new look at the Westward migration.
Tattered Cover Book Store
Author Barry Lopez recomended this book as part of the Rocky Mountain Land Library's "A Reading List For the President Elect: A Western Primer for the Next Administration."
Carl Johnson
Possibly the best book ever written about the westward migration, this posthumously published doctoral dissertation is a gift to America.
Roger Quesnell
Masterfully researched and heart breaking statistics on the Oregon Trail.
Accurate , but academically written. In other words, kind of dry.
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