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Westward Vision: The Story of the Oregon Trail download epub

by David Lavender


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Home Browse Books Book details, Westward Vision: The Story of the Oregon Trail. Westward Vision: The Story of the Oregon Trail. By David Lavender, Marian Ebert. In one very real sense," David Lavender writes, "the story of the Oregon Trail begins with Columbus. By contrast, the Oregon pioneers decided, almost overnight it seemed, to cross two thousand miles of plains and mountains inhabited by potentially hostile Indians and seek out living space in an area dominated by representatives of a foreign power with which their nation had already fought two wars.

Noted historian David Lavender has penned probably the finest single volume on the Oregon Trail ever written.

As the subtitle of the book indicates, this is "the story of the Oregon Trail". Noted historian David Lavender has penned probably the finest single volume on the Oregon Trail ever written.

Westward Vision book. In chiseled, colorful prose, Lavender illustrates the westward vision that impelled the early explorers of the American interior looking for a northwest passage and send fur trappers into the In one very real sense, David Lavender writes, the story of the Oregon Trail begins with Columbus.

David Sievert Lavender (February 4, 1910 – April 26, 2003) was an American historian and writer who was one of the most prolific chroniclers of the American West . Westward Vision: The Story of the Oregon Trail (1963). The American West (1969). He published more than 40 books, including two novels, several children's books, and a memoir. Unlike his two prominent contemporaries, Bernard DeVoto and Wallace Stegner, Lavender was not an academic. Penguin Book of the American West (1969). The Great Persuader (1970).

The Oregon Trail was a roughly 2,000-mile route from Independence . Unfortunately, however, not all the books were accurate and left some settlers lost and in danger of running out of provisions

The Oregon Trail was a roughly 2,000-mile route from Independence, Missouri, to Oregon City, Oregon, which was used by hundreds of thousands of American. Without the Oregon Trail and the passing of the Oregon Donation Land Act in 1850, which encouraged settlement in the Oregon Territory, American pioneers would have been slower to settle the American West in the 19th century. Missionaries Blaze the Oregon Trail. Unfortunately, however, not all the books were accurate and left some settlers lost and in danger of running out of provisions. The End of the Oregon Trail.

In one very real sense," David Lavender writes, "the story of the Oregon Trail begins with Columbus. In chiseled, colorful prose, Lavender illustrates the "westward vision" that impelled the early explorers of the American interior looking for a northwest passage and send fur trappers into the region charted by Lewis and Clark. For the emigrants following the trappers' routes, that vision gradually grew into a sense of a manifest American destiny. For the emigrants following the trappers' routes, that vision gradually grew into a sense of a manifest American destiny

As the subtitle of the book indicates, this is "the story of the Oregon Trail". For the sake of summary

As the subtitle of the book indicates, this is "the story of the Oregon Trail".

In one very real sense, David Lavender writes, the story of the Oregon Trail begins with Columbus. In chiseled, colorful prose, Lavender illustrates the westward vision that impelled the early explorers of the American interior looking for a northwest passage and send fur trappers into the region charted by Lewis and Clark. For the emigrants following the trappers’ routes, that vision gradually grew into a sense of a manifest American destiny.

“In one very real sense,” David Lavender writes, “the story of the Oregon Trail begins with Columbus.” This opening suggests the panoramic sweep of his history of that famous trail. In chiseled, colorful prose, Lavender illustrates the “westward vision” that impelled the early explorers of the American interior looking for a northwest passage and send fur trappers into the region charted by Lewis and Clark. For the emigrants following the trappers’ routes, that vision gradually grew into a sense of a manifest American destiny. Lavender describes the efforts of emigration societies, of missionaries like Marcus and Narcissa Whitman, and of early pioneer settlers like Hall Jackson Kelley, Jason Lee, and Thomas Jefferson Farnham, as well as the routes they took to the “Promised Land.” He concludes by recounting the first large-scale emigrations of 1843–45, which steeled the U. S. government for war with Mexico and agreements with Britain over the Oregon boundary. 

Comments: (5)

Zut
David Lavender's WESTWARD VISION spans the period from the mid-17th century to 1849 as he chronicles the search for a reliable overland route to, and the subsequent settlement of, what would become known as Oregon, principally that area which borders the Willamette River as it flows into the Columbia (at present-day Portland). As the subtitle of the book indicates, this is "the story of the Oregon Trail".
For the sake of summary, I arbitrarily divide this book into five parts: early exploration of the Upper Mississippi River by French-Canadians seeking a route to the "western sea", the Lewis and Clark Expedition and the subsequent unsuccessful efforts to establish an easy route to Oregon via the Missouri River and its headwaters, the influx of "mountain men" into the area and the discovery of a more southerly route (the Oregon Trail), the early settlement in Oregon of Christian missionary groups sent to proselytize the Indians, and the massive immigration of land-seekers in the 1840's which ultimately resulted in the establishment of a U.S. Oregon Territory.
WESTWARD VISION is the result of extensive research on the part of the author. Its wealth of details is both its strong point and its undoing. Probably the most commendably concise chapters (5 and 6), considering the length of the event, deal with the amazing Lewis and Clark Expedition. Perhaps Lavender thought the history of the two-year trek adequately covered elsewhere. In any case, the following chapters on the exploits and travails of the fur-trapping mountain men and the missionaries are so full of minutiae that it would require the reader to take extensive notes in order to keep track of the various groups and individuals endeavoring to cross the Great Divide into Oregon in the 1820s and 30s. (Reading this book for pleasure, I wasn't prepared to expend that much effort.) Only in Chapter 19, which gives an account of the 1843 journey of the first large immigrant train - almost 1000 persons- over the Oregon Trail, does the narrative regain a concise clarity. A major failing of the the volume is the lack of adequate maps to locate the majority of the named and innumerable places and geographical features: rivers, river forks, buttes, mountains, rocks, forts, mountain passes, river fords, trapper rendezvous, and settlements. Perusing contemporary state highway maps didn't help much. And in a work this extensive, I would have expected a large section of illustrations. Except for several very crude drawings, there were none.
What elevates WESTWARD VISION, and compels me to award four stars, is that the author makes his point magnificently, i.e. that it took many tough people with large reserves of true grit to expand the fledgling United States to the Pacific's shores. The crossing was hard:
"At the rainswept crossing of the North Platte, blue with cold, cramped by dysentery and pregnancy pangs, Mary Walker (an 1838 pilgrim) sat down and 'cried to think how comfortable my father's hogs were' (back home). As for Sarah Smith, Mary sniffed, she wept practically the entire distance to Oregon." And even recreation had a sharp edge, as at the 1832 trappers' rendezvous:
"... a few of the boys poured a kettle of alcohol over a friend and set him afire. Somehow he lived through it, and fun's fun."
Finally, Lavender eloquently suggests the reason so many embarked on the Oregon Trail at all:
"What matters is not whether fulfillment was attainable in reality (at the Trail's end), but rather that at long last in the world's sad, torn history an appreciable part of mankind thought it might be. That was both the torment and the freedom - to go and look."
Kifer
Noted historian David Lavender has penned probably the finest single volume on the Oregon Trail ever written. Starting in 1719, 130 years before the trail was formally established, Lavender slowly and concretely builds the story of the United States first claim to this territory by examining similar efforts by the Spanish, French, Russian and English which preceded the American claims.

Incorporating and firmly underscoring the efforts of the Native Americans, the Mountain Men, Hudson's Bay Company and the early missionary efforts, Lavender reveals that these four groups did more to claim the Northwest for the United States than any politician or political party in Washington. Always in the forefront of Western Expansion, the impact of the missionary effort was pivotal to the US claim to this Norwest portion of our nation.

This is a truly fine history and a remarkably excellent piece of writing.
Bajinn
Excellent book and you should also read his book Bent's Fort
Maman
This is an excellent account of the great quest for the Northwest, which eventually culminated in the vast migrations of Americans along the Oregon Trail. From the early exploration efforts of Jacques Cartier (1530's); Jean Nicolet (1630's); Marquette and Joliet (1670's); LaSalle (1680's); Bourgmont (early 1700's); the Verendryes (1730's to 1740's); Jonathan Carver (1760's) and others too numerous to mention, we see how the English, French, Spanish and Americans all had the goal to establish roots in Oregon. When the mountain men came into the picture searching for their beaver pelts in the early 1800's, it was this breed of men that finally opened the routes across the Rocky Mountains which lead the wagon trains through to the Northwest. Lavender then takes us up to the first overland migrations (1840's) of the missionaries and others in search of a better way of life, along with all their sacrifices and perils. This is a great book and very insightful of events leading up to the Oregon Trail.
Westward Vision: The Story of the Oregon Trail download epub
Americas
Author: David Lavender
ISBN: 080322866X
Category: History
Subcategory: Americas
Language: English
Publisher: University of Nebraska Press (April 1, 1985)