Very interesting I enjoyed this book. It makes you think of what we have today that we take so for granted.
It is amazing how much detail Hubalek packs in her narrative, and this wealth paints a clear picture of what travel was like at the time. Deborah Pieratt had no voice in the decision to move from Kentucky to Kansas; it was a "done deal" when the menfolk in her family told her what was going to happen. In her letters back home to family members, Deborah tells us how difficult it was to pack the wagons for the journey, how heartbreaking it sometimes was to make one choice after another: should it stay or can it go?
She tells of the hazards of crossing rivers and streams, of how fraught with danger stopping in towns along the way could be when the question of slavery was already in the process of ripping the country apart. If any reader has romantic notions of traveling in a covered wagon, Deborah Pieratt dispels them in her letters-- especially when talking about trying to get clothes clean and personal hygiene. Never-ending dirt and danger, uncooperative weather, trying to get meals cooked, sick children cared for, and waves of homesickness and longing for family and friends whom she would never see again-- all these things and many more comprise Deborah's journey west. Once in Kansas and finding the land they would call home, Deborah and her family have no time to rest. They immediately have to build some sort of shelter and get crops planted so they will be able to eat.
Trail of Thread is a fascinating little volume that sheds so much light on this period of expansion in America. I recommend it to anyone who is interested in pioneer life and women's history, and I'll be keeping an eye peeled for other books in the series.
This book, and the others in the series, are based on the authors ancestors who moved from Kentucky to Kansas in 1854. Told in a series of letters written by Deborah Pieratt as she travels west, we learn of the joys and hardships of travel via wagon train.
This was a great little book about the one familys adventures as they move west. I really enjoyed all the small things that went into this tale. For instance, as the Pieratts travel, they meet other travelers who share with them tips of the trail, like stick bread. I want to try stick bread this summer. You take a flour sack, put some flour in it, make a small center, add water, tie up the sack, set on a stick that is upright in the ground near the campfire, and throughout the evening give a tap or spin. Sooner or later, you get a kind of bread.
There were also lots of quilt pattern sharing going on in this book. While there were tons of chores to be done every day, there were also periods where all you had to do was stay on the wagon as the oxen pulled you ever closer to the western horizon. So quilting was a common, transportable hobby. I did not realize this before, but apparently quilting patterns were so treasured that one could trade a pattern for a bit of bread or cheese along the road.
Not everything was rosy and sunny for the Pieratts as they made their way towards Kansas. The biggest problem was the elements dangerous river crossings, unpredictable weather, etc. So theres a little drama in this book showing the hazards of the road.
A great mix of the entertaining and educational, definitely worth the read (or listen)!
Narration: Pam Dougherty did a great job with the regional accents in this book and with Deborahs voice as she wrote home about her travels. She really imbued Deborahs letters with emotion happy, sad, troubled, desperate, elated, tired. Excellent narration!
An enjoyable tale of the trials and trepidations encountered on the journey to what was hoped to be a better life. This tale is told from the perspective of a woman on the trail making the reader feel the joys and hardships of the long arduous journey. A journey fraught with good times and bad , joy and hardships. This hook is the first in a series. I will definitely be reading the others.