By William Smedley
Ebook by way of Smedley, William
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Additional info for Across the Plains: An 1862 Journey from Omaha to Oregon
This, we feared, might have been a temptation to his companions, and as his tale was a little lame and he in bad company, we strongly suspected him of being an accomplice in the affair. July 21. Drove till near noonfound grass in abundance, but the mosquitos in such superabundance that our cattle were unable to eat, though they had been fasting for several days. Partner being sick, we "turned out" for the day. This afternoon was the saddest and loneliest and dreariest of my experience on the plains and put my courage and fortitude to a severe test.
M. on Buffalo fork, a fine stream, six rods wide, with sandy bottom. June 8. Sabbath. Drove ten miles over a hilly, sandy road; put up for the day on Bluff Creek, upon which was a beaver dam recently constructed, in which was Page 18 displayed much of the ingenuity and skill or that high order of instinct peculiar to these animals. June 9. Traveled over about eleven miles of heavy road; thunderstorm in evening; rain and hail. Crossed several small but beautiful streams of water. June 10. Nooned on Rattlesnake Creek, on the bank of which was a temporary trading post kept by a Canadian Frenchman, with whom I left a letter for home, to be mailed at the office on the opposite side of the Platte.
We were first conscious that we had passed it by finding the water flowing gently toward the setting sun. A peculiar Page 31 sensation here stole over my feelings. " In this perilous region it is not safe that the heart dwell too much on home; it may soften by such reflections and become unfitted for what it may soon be doomed to encounter. " Camped in the evening near Pacific Springs, with excellent water and abundance of grass. From this place to Fort Hall is a new roadLander's Cut-offsaid to be shorter by eighty miles, with plenty of grass and water, in place of the desert traversed by the old road.
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