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Harriett Bidwell Shaw started a journal in September 18,1851, when she and her husband, Reverend James Milton Shaw traveled in a wagon train via the Santa Fe Trail to New Mexico. Harriett was the only woman to accompany the wagon train. She documented their daily activities, the weather conditions, hardships on the trail, encounters with Indians, and buffalo hunting. When the Shaws passed through Kansas they stayed at Shawnee Baptist Mission, Council Grove, and Pawnee Rock and stopped near Fort Mackey on the Arkansas river. They reached Santa Fe on November 14, 1851, where the journal ends. The Shaws evenually went to Albuquerque and then Socorro to establish Baptist missions among the Spanish people. In sum, Shaws journal presents a remarkable picture of the difficulties and rewards of travel to the American West prior to the American Civil War.
Creator: Shaw, Harriet Bidwell
This is an excellent source to use when discussing the Santa Fe trail. Throughout the journal Shaw discusses the scarcity of food, the hunting of wild game, the early hours, fear of Native Americans, river crossings, and mosquitoes.
Item Number: 209694
Call Number: 2007-137.01
KSHS Identifier: DaRT ID: 209694
Business and Industry - Occupations/Professions - Religion - Ministers
Community Life - Religion - Christianity - Baptist
Curriculum - 4th Grade Standards - Kansas History Standards - Individuals and developments (Benchmark 1) - Trail life (Indicator 6)
Date - 1854-1860
Government and Politics - Federal Government - Federal agencies and programs - Agencies - Indian affairs
Government and Politics - Federal Government - Federal agencies and programs - Agencies - Interior, Department of
Government and Politics - Federal Government - Federal agencies and programs - Agencies - Interior, Department of - General Land Office
Home and Family - Daily life
Objects and Artifacts - Communication Artifacts - Documentary Artifact - Journal
People - American Indians - Missions
People - Women
Places - Other States - New Mexico
Thematic Time Period - Trails, 1821-1880 - Santa Fe Trail
Transportation - Non-motorized - Covered wagons
Transportation - Trails - Santa Fe
Type of Material - Unpublished documents - Journal