This book follows the story Antoine, son of a French trader who first traveled over the Oregon trail with his father. After his father dies he is hired as a young guide for a group of settlers who seek to cross the Rockies in covered wagons. Even at a young age, he has more experience in unsettled regions than most of other travelers, and his conflicts with older members of the party provide considerable drama on the journey.
The author of this series of stories for children has endeavored simply to show why and how the descendants of the early colonists fought their way through the wilderness in search of new homes. The several narratives deal witli the struggles of those adventurous people who forced their way westward, ever westward, whether in hope of gain or in answer to " the call of the wild," and who, in so doing, wrote their names with their blood across this country of ours from the Ohio to the Columbia.
To excite in the hearts of the young people of this land a desire to know more regarding the building up of this great nation, and at the same time to entertain in such a manner as may stimulate to noble deeds, is the real aim of these stories. In them there is nothing of romance, but only a careful, truthful record of the part played by children in the great battles with those forces, human as well as natural, which, for so long a time, held a vast portion of this broad land against the advance of home seekers.
With the knowledge of what has been done by our own people in our own land, surely there is no reason why one should resort to fiction in order to depict scenes of heroism, daring, and sublime disregard of suffering in nearly every form.
Books Consulted in Writing
BALLANTYNE, R. M.: The Dog Crusoe. Henry T. Coates.
BRYANT, EDWIN: What I Saw in California. Appleton & Co.
BYRCE, GEORGE: The Remarkable History of the Hudson's Bay Company. Sampson, Low, Marston & Co.
CHITTENDEN, HIRAM MARTIN: The American Fur Trade of the Far West. Francis P. Harper.
DELLENBAUGH, F. S: Breaking the Wilderness. G. P. Putnam's Sons.
DRAKE, SAMUEL ADAMS: The Making of the Great West. Charles Scribner's Sons.
IRVING, WASHINGTON: The Adventures of Captain Bonneville G. P. Putnam's, Sons.
MARCY, RANDOLF: The Prairie Traveler. Harper & Brothers.
PARKMAN, FRANCIS: The Oregon Trail. Little, Brown & Company.
PAXSON, FREDERICK L.: The Last American Frontier. The Macmillan Company.
POWELL, LYMAN P.: Historic Towns of Western States. G. P. Putnam's Sons.
THORNTON, J. QUINN: Oregon and California. Harper & Brothers.
THWAITES, REUBEN GOLD: Early Western Travels (Palmer). Arthur H. Clarke Co.
THWAITES, REUBEN GOLD: Early Western Travels (Buttrick) Arthur H. Clarke Co.