Coupon
The Oregon Trail : A New American Journey
by Rinker Buck


Overview - #1 "New York Times" Bestseller * #1 Indie Next Pick
Absorbing...Winning...The many layers in "The Oregon Trail" are linked by Mr. Buck s voice, which is alert and unpretentious in a manner that put me in mind of Bill Bryson s comic tone in "A Walk in the Woods." Dwight Garner, "The New York Times"
An epic account of traveling the length of the Oregon Trail the old-fashioned way in a covered wagon with a team of mules, an audacious journey that hasn t been attempted in a century which also chronicles the rich history of the trail, the people who made the migration, and its significance to the country.
  Read more...

 
Hardcover
  • Retail Price: $28.00
  • $21.00
    (Save 25%)
Sorry: This item is not currently available.

FREE Shipping for Club Members
 
> Check In-Store Availability

In-Store pricing may vary

 
 
New & Used Marketplace 2 copies from $22.51
 
Download

This item is available only to U.S. billing addresses.
 
 
 
 

More About The Oregon Trail by Rinker Buck
 
 
 
Overview
#1 "New York Times" Bestseller * #1 Indie Next Pick
Absorbing...Winning...The many layers in "The Oregon Trail" are linked by Mr. Buck s voice, which is alert and unpretentious in a manner that put me in mind of Bill Bryson s comic tone in "A Walk in the Woods." Dwight Garner, "The New York Times"
An epic account of traveling the length of the Oregon Trail the old-fashioned way in a covered wagon with a team of mules, an audacious journey that hasn t been attempted in a century which also chronicles the rich history of the trail, the people who made the migration, and its significance to the country.
Spanning two thousand miles and traversing six states from Missouri to the Pacific coast, the Oregon Trail is the route that made America. In the fifteen years before the Civil War, when 400,000 pioneers used the trail to emigrate West scholars still regard this as the largest land migration in history it united the coasts, doubled the size of the country, and laid the groundwork for the railroads. Today, amazingly, the trail is all but forgotten.
Rinker Buck is no stranger to grand adventures. His first travel narrative, "Flight of Passage," was hailed by "The New Yorker" as a funny, cocky gem of a book, and with "The Oregon Trail" he brings the most important route in American history back to glorious and vibrant life.
Traveling from St. Joseph, Missouri, to Baker City, Oregon, over the course of four months, Buck is accompanied by three cantankerous mules, his boisterous brother, Nick, and an incurably filthy Jack Russell terrier named Olive Oyl. Along the way, they dodge thunderstorms in Nebraska, chase runaway mules across the Wyoming plains, scout more than five hundred miles of nearly vanished trail on foot, cross the Rockies, and make desperate fifty-mile forced marches for water. The Buck brothers repair so many broken wheels and axels that they nearly reinvent the art of wagon travel itself. They also must reckon with the ghost of their father, an eccentric yet loveable dreamer whose memory inspired their journey across the plains and whose premature death, many years earlier, has haunted them both ever since.
But "The Oregon Trail" is much more than an epic adventure. It is also a lively and essential work of history that shatters the comforting myths about the trail years passed down by generations of Americans. Buck introduces readers to the largely forgotten roles played by trailblazing evangelists, friendly Indian tribes, female pioneers, bumbling U.S. Army cavalrymen, and the scam artists who flocked to the frontier to fleece the overland emigrants. Generous portions of the book are devoted to the history of old and appealing things like the mule and the wagon. We also learn how the trail accelerated American economic development. Most arresting, perhaps, are the stories of the pioneers themselves ordinary families whose extraordinary courage and sacrifice made this country what it became.
At once a majestic journey across the West, a significant work of history, and a moving personal saga, "The Oregon Trail "draws readers into the journey of a lifetime. It is a wildly ambitious work of nonfiction from a true American original. It is a book with a heart as big as the country it crosses."


 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9781451659160
  • ISBN-10: 1451659164
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster
  • Publish Date: June 2015
  • Page Count: 450


Related Categories

Books > History > Expeditions & Discoveries
Books > History > United States - General
Books > Travel > Essays & Travelogues

 
Publishers Weekly Reviews

Publishers Weekly® Reviews

  • Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
  • Review Date: 2015-04-20
  • Reviewer: Staff

Despite growing up on the East Coast, Buck’s (Flight of Passage) fondest childhood memories are of going on family trips with his eccentric father, who insisted on “seeing America slowly” by traveling and camping out in a covered wagon. These trips ignited a lust for travel and history that stuck with Buck, and that came roaring back when he found out that the Oregon Trail is meticulously preserved and traversable. Buck and his foul-mouthed handyman brother, Nick, set out to follow the 2,000-mile path, with only a covered wagon and mule team as their mode of transportation. The ensuing tale combines the brothers’ personal narrative with the remarkable history of the trail, including written accounts from the pioneers who braved it. What could have been a set of rote diary entries is anything but, as Buck’s enthusiasm for the often arduous trip, coupled with his honest assessment of poor judgments and mistakes along the way, makes for an entertaining and enlightening account of one of America’s most legendary migrations. Even readers who don’t know a horse from a mule will find themselves swept up in this inspiring and masterful tale of perseverance and the pioneer spirit. Illus. Agent: Sloan Harris, ICM. (July)

 
BAM Customer Reviews