Our Faces Are Westward: The 1852 Oregon Trail Journey of Edward Allen


Authors:  Dennis M. Larsen and Karen L. Johnson


In 1852, a sickly Edward Jay Allen traveled to Council Bluffs, Iowa and joined a wagon train en route to Oregon. Allen became exhausted by heat and insufficient water but still managed to lead a small group down the Snake River on a raft. Following a near-fatal but exciting adventure over falls and rapids, he arrived at Ft. Boise and took over a ferry operation there. After three weeks at Fort Boise, Allen struggled westward on foot to Portland - short of both food and water. Read about his trials and tribulations in Our Faces Are Westward: The 1852 Oregon Trail Journey of Edward Allen.

This newest publication from the Oregon-California Trails Association relies on Allen's long-forgotten letters and is supplemented by his recently discovered trail diary (an unpublished manuscript written later in life) and letters written to Allen by his siblings as he traveled West. Filled with detail - poetry - and humor - these documents and 26 images bring the emigrant trail experience to life in a remarkably literate and entertaining fashion.

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