Tag Archives: readathon

Found

Found in the book I'm reading #readathon #deweysreadathon #books #found
The best gift I have given is a key chane I gave to my dad

Late last night I got tired of dysentery and death on the Oregon Trail and switched to reading Nancy Drew. This was tucked into Password to Larkspur Lane.

I didn’t make it a full 24 hours. Sometime after 2am I fell asleep mid-word.

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Elizabeth Dixon Smith Geer

Elizabeth’s husband fell sick on the journey. He made it to Portland, but had to be carried to their leaky, lean-to shed and laid upon what was to become his deathbed. He lingered for two months, before finally dying.

feb 1 [Tuesday] rain all day this day my Dear husband my last remaining friend died.

feb 2 to day we buried my earthly companion, now I know what none but widows know that is how comfortless is that of a widows life espesily when left in a strange land without money or friends and the care of seven children — cloudy

Geer, Elizabeth Dixon Smith, 1808/9?-1855, Diary of Elizabeth Dixon Geer, 1-2 February 1848, in Covered Wagon Women: Diaries & Letters from the Western Trails, volume 1: 1840-1849, page 146. Holmes, Kenneth L., editor & compiler Lincoln, Nebraska: University of Nebraska Press, 1983.

That Spring, Elizabeth and her children left Portland, which she described as a “sick game place.” They settled in Yamhill County, and she soon married a man named Joseph Geer.

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Elizabeth Dixon Smith Geer

Imagine traveling by ox and wagon across the country, with no access to medical care, and only a few scant “medicines” at your disposal.

passed through St Joseph on the bank of the Missouri laid in our flour cheese and crackers and medicine for no one should travle this road without medicine for they are al most sure to have the summer complaint each family should have a box of phisic pills and a quart of caster oil a quart of the best rum and a large vial of peppermint essence. we traveled 4 miles the river and encamped here we found nine waggons bound for oregon.

Geer, Elizabeth Dixon Smith, 1808/9?-1855, Diary of Elizabeth Dixon Geer, 3 June 1847, in Covered Wagon Women: Diaries & Letters from the Western Trails, volume 1: 1840-1849, page 119. Holmes, Kenneth L., editor & compiler Lincoln, Nebraska: University of Nebraska Press, 1983.

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Tamsen E. Donner

Have reached the Donner Party letters. Yes, *those* Donners. #readathon #deweysreadathon #donnerparty #ladyjournals

Tamsen was opposed to leaving the main road to take the Hastings Cutoff. Sadly, she never made it to California. Instead of evacuating Truckee Lake with the second or third relief party, she chose to stay behind to tend to her dying husband. When she finally left the cabins at Truckee Lake and attempted to walk out on her own, she made it as far as the tents at Alder Creek. There she either died or was killed by Lewis Keseberg.

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Anna Maria King

Not all the women who traveled westward did so enthusiastically or willingly. Anna Maria King was one of them, though once her family was settled in Oregon, she found life there agreeable.

And although I was much apposed to coming as anyone could be, if I were back there and know what I know now, I should be perfectly willing to come.

King, Anna Maria, 1822-1905, Letter to Mother, Brothers, and Sisters, 1 April 1846, in Covered Wagon Women: Diaries & Letters from the Western Trails, volume 1: 1840-1849, page 44. Holmes, Kenneth L., editor & compiler Lincoln, Nebraska: University of Nebraska Press, 1983.

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Virginia Elizabeth Backenstoe Reed

Virginia was 13 years old when she was stranded at Truckee Pass with the the Donner party. Hers was the only family who did not resort to cannibalism, but that didn’t make their ordeal any less horrific.

The passage below is from a letter she wrote to her cousin, after the surviving members of the Donner party were rescued.

O Mary I would cry and wish I had what you all wasted Eliza had to go to Mr Graves cabin & we staid at Mr Breen they had meat all the time & we had to kill littel cash the dog & eat him we ate his head and feet & hide & evry thing about him o my Dear Cousin you dont now what trubel is yet a many a time we had on the last thing a cooking and did not now wher the next would come from but there was awl ways some way provided

Reed, Virginia, 1833-1921, Letter to Her Cousin, 16 May 1847, in Covered Wagon Women: Diaries & Letters from the Western Trails, volume 1: 1840-1849, page 78. Holmes, Kenneth L., editor & compiler Lincoln, Nebraska: University of Nebraska Press, 1983.

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And so it begins

The Pile. I'm going to start by finishing the very end of the Nancy Drew that's been sitting on my bedside table for weeks. #readathon #books #ladyjournals

Ladyjournals, ahoy! But first I’m going to finish the Nancy Drew that’s been sitting on my bedside table.

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The Final Tally

I didn't make it. I fell asleep at about 3am. This was the final tally.

I didn’t make it. I fell asleep at about 3am. I think that’s about when I ran out of steam last time, too.

This was the final tally.

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House of Stairs

House of Stairs #readathon

Starting to get tired.

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Back to It

Took an hour off to watch Star Trek. Now onward! #readathon

I took an hour off to watch Star Trek. Now onward!

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