Donner Party

Donner Party

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  • Off the Beaten Path
  • Hastings has given us a harder trail, but turning back will take to long. We must wait for him.
  • Hastings has sent word that we must follow another trail. We can continue now...
  • Problems in the Desert
  • I know we have lost much, but we must press on. We will make it!
  • The Group Starts Coming Apart
  • You must leave!
  • While initially thinking that the shortcut was foolproof, the Donner Party soon realized that Hasting was leading them astray. Upon further word, he took them down an even worse path... 
  • More Problems With Livestock
  • No good Indians! That's my last Ox! We'll continue on foot...
  • After being completely mislead by Hastings', the Donner Party finished a devastating trip across the Desert. James Reed lost almost everything.  
  • Snowed In
  • We will not last in a tent! 
  • Tensions were high and spirits low. John Snyder, a hired teamster, somehow got his oxen got entangled with Reed's. After a harsh argument, Snyder used his whip to attack Reed and his wife. In what some said was self-defense, Reed stabbed Snyder to death, prompting the group to exile him. 
  • Last Resorts...
  • The emigrants pushed on, eventually landing themselves in the middle of Pauite Indian country. The Pauite recognized the weakness of the train and began harassing them by stealing livestock and shooting arrows at their camp throughout the night. William Eddy, a cabinet maker, lost all of his livestock.
  • Snow fell hard to the point where it was chest high in some areas. The emigrants set up camp as best they could. Some made crude log cabins, while others could only make tents or lean-toos. They suffered in the terrible shelter that was completely incapable of protecting them from the elements.
  • When this snow clears, we will push for the pass...
  • So cold...
  • As conditions became worse, food ran short. Many people starved and ate ox scraps. The Forlorn Hope, a group sent to go ahead for help, resorted to cannabilism in order to survive. All but William Eddy and two Indians ate their fellow companions.
  • We must do this.. to survive...
  • Never...
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