Journal of Western Travel
by John McTurk Gibson
edited by Weldon Hoppe
May 14th, 1859 -- It rained again last night, we however took a late start and travelled over a road crooked enough to break a black snake's back, should he ever attempt to follow it. We have passed every conceivable kind of vehicle, from a hand cart to a carriage and four, on their way back, there being only one sort of conveyance I have not seen, and that is a bull hitched to a sulky. We passed the grave of a man who had been shot on the prairies and buried some 80 yards from the road, with parts of his saddle at his head and feet, and a bullet hole in one part of the saddle, there are so many stories told about his death and the cause of it, that I refrain from giving any, more tribute I believe has been paid to the tomb of this stranger than anyone I ever recollect seeing, there is a deep path worn in the sod on each side one going to and another coming from his grave. We have all been speculating on the probable amount of travel on the valley of the Platte at the present time, this we consider the best travelled road of the three and put it down at 25,000, a low estimate. The St. Joe road will average 50,000 and the North side of the Platte will go equally as high making in the aggregate 125,000, a pretty good crowd to be caught out on a fool's errand, some of our crowd have got a fit of the Blues tonight. I don't know how it may work out by morning.
Travelled some ten miles. We are encamped on the prairie to knight, also last knight. We are getting considerable rain at present.
Copyright © 1997 Weldon Hoppe