Oregon Trail Journal

by Julia Wellons (Arwin Oprah)

Journal Entry #1

My name is Arwin Oprah and I'm starting this journal to document the perilous journey to Oregon. So far it seems easy enough, though I know this serenity will be extremely short-lived. My wagon consists of my pretty large family, consisting of my second wife (Addison), my 5-year-old son (Benedict Cumberbatch), my 3-year-old son (Chucky), and my unborn child (KFC). Though we come from a very simple life of farming from Tennessee, I begin this journey wishing for a better life in Oregon, like many of the others traveling with us. I hope that eventually this journal will not only serve as an aid in reminiscing, but also help others to journey across this trail successfully.


Today we reached our first obstacle on our journey. It took the form of a river which we could either ford across, or pay a nearby Native American $25 to ride across on his boat. Because my non lucrative farming job from Tennessee left me with only $100 for the journey, I decided to gamble my wagon's safety by fording the river. Luckily, my wagon train found a very safe section of the river to ford across and we made it safely.


Shortly after we forded the river, an Indian approached us asking us to take a gamble. This gamble stayed along the lines of a test of strength. We persevered to second place, though luckily we did not have any money taken from us.


With many prayers for survival,

Arwin Oprah

Journal Entry #2

During this portion of the most difficult journey not many misfortunes occurred within our wagon train. I report that though the journey is becoming increasingly difficult, it isn't anything my family can't handle.


We once again were disrupted by another Native American in the name of gambling. Though I think that gambling was a foolhardy action, I am pleased to report that we did earn additional supplies. Who knows? These supplies might prove to be vital along the way.


We came to another river, this time without a calm section of the river to reassure the safety of fording it. I used a very large portion of my money to ensure the safety of my family members by paying off an Indian to help us cross with the aid of his boat. I seem to be becoming additionally tentative with the soon-to-be birth of my child KFC. I wish to ensure his/her safety while still traveling productively to the prospect of a better life in Oregon. It is proving to be more difficult than I had originally thought.


I skipped the hunting session today. I have plenty of the dried food that I packed for the journey. There is no need for me to waste ammo and animal lives for a surplus of supplies.


With prospects of Oregon life in my mind,

Arwin Oprah

Journal Entry #3

My wagon train was recently caught between the choice of two roads, one being a perilous journey through ancient Indian burial grounds, and the other being a slow, but safe, path the long way around. Luckily our choice was a good one. I heard about the unfortunate luck of the other wagon trains who chose the riskier path. Imagine if we had been attacked by the Native Americans!


I am currently very elated with my choice of bringing large quantities of food with my wagon. So far we've only used a small portion of the dried foods and vegetables. With plenty of food to spare we continue along the trail.


Unsurprisingly, we came across a THIRD river. My decision to pay $50 to cross safely may or may not have been affected by the near miss of my third child's birth. It was a very close call and my nerves have been severely affected. Can you imagine a childbirth right before a dangerous journey across a river? Not only that, but only some time before the third river we were faced with the difficulty of purifying muddy water. We chose the simple way out, using our remaining water supply. I think we could have thought of a more ingenious way of accomplishing the feat of purifying water with our meager supplies, but this journey is definitely tiring out me and my wagon train.


We were faced with another fork in the road. Our choices were a very dangerous valley trail, an easy safe, but llloooooonnnng trail, and a confusing trail which reports give mixed information. We decided to take the third route. We traveled along safely enough though our non dried food perished from the weather.


With high anticipation of the journey's end,

Arwin Oprah

Journal Entry #4

I am sorely tired of this journey and wish it to end soon. Even though we have covered much of the distance with only a few miles ahead I am hopeful.


We were forced to turn back from our path and have chosen to travel along massacre valley. I am getting more and more angry with this long and painful journey. I wish it to end soon. Gladly though, the third child finally came. I am going to take this as a good omen to keep my spirits risen.


Today we were faced with a choice in proceeding along the Massacre Valley. Apparently we chose the wrong one. The cold has overtaken us and our strength is quickly dwindling. I write now with the last of my strength. I know that we are all going to die. Our attempts at surviving are fruitless; these attempts will only prolong the inevitable. This journey was long and painful, and most definitely not worth our deaths. I know that my anger won't do anything though.


With my last breath,

Arwin Oprah