Oregon Trail Diary

By Maude Lachowski

Entry #1

Dear Diary, my name is Maude Lachowski and tomorrow, April 25, I am setting out on the Oregon trail with my family. My parents have both died, so I, at only 22 years of age, will be bringing my 14 yr old brother Francisco, my 12 year old sister Friday, my sister Laquisha, my brother Archibald, my brother Bartholomew, and my sister Dulce.

We are now 3 days into our journey and need to cross the Missouri River. Our wagon leader finds a relatively calm spot to cross, but there is also an Indian running a ferry across for $25. I choose not to take the ferry and float my wagon across. I cross safely without any problems. Th next day, we figure out that despite the lack of water sources nearby, everyone has brought at least one water barrel, so we are not delayed. A few days later, we cross a filed filled with wild game. I try my luck at hunting, but do not catch anything. A week later, we came across an Indian who wanted to gamble with our wagon train, we chose not to. Unfortunately, 2 people in our group did not bring firewood, so we were slightly delayed.

Entry #2

We are now about a month into our journey and our wagon train is doing fairly well. However, an Indian crossed our path and made us take a test. He said that you should be rewarded for bravery and courage. Unfortunately, we did not pass the test and each had to pay $50 to the Indian in order to move on. We later came across the Sand Flat River, where I chose not to pay the fee, but instead lost some supplies out of my wagon during the crossing. Finally, we came across a fork in the trail with 2 different paths. We chose the more safe but longer path, the Cheyenne River Trail. The oxen pulling our wagon were also beginning to get hungry, so we were slightly delayed when a few people forgot animal feed.

Entry #3

So far the trail we chose has been not quite satisfactory. After successfully trading with Native Americans for some fresh meat but losing some of my supplies in return, we got quite a surprise when they also gave us a young Indian child. Our water supply was dwindling, so we were forced to drink water that could possibly contain cholera. Despite our efforts to sanitize the water, you never really know. 2 people from our wagon train were also shot in the arm during an encounter with the Native Americans. After arriving at Choice Fort, our group decides to take the shorter yet riskier Massacre Canyon trail.

Entry #4

Fortunately, our wagon train avoided the cholera outbreak among neighboring trains. However, a big muddy landslide blocked our trail. Every member of our group needed a pick axe and shovel in order to remove the debris and continue on. Indian savages ambushed us in a canyon, forcing the wagons to lose some supplies right before taking on the desert. I can feel it growing colder everyday, and I also had to give up blankets and other things when a had to reduce the contents of my wagon down to nearly half the original starting weightin order to cross the pass.

While crossing the treacherous icy path, scouts went ahead and reported back that the valley is up ahead, however I'm not sure we will make it. Food is almost gone, and my feet are starting to get frostbite. Currently, it is every man for himself now that our group has reverted to cannibalism to stay alive. My son ate a boy from another wagon, and my chubby sister Laquisha has been killed by another family. I fear that I will be next, so, to whomever may find this diary, goodbye.