µ Ordeal by Hunger: The Story of the Donner Party À Download by ✓ George R. Stewart
µ Ordeal by Hunger: The Story of the Donner Party À Download by ✓ George R. Stewart I ve never read anything by George Stewart before and discovered him by way of Wallace Stegner s Big Rock Candy Mountain This was truly a page turner and well written It was written in 1936 so was probably the first book about that incident He seems to have done a lot of research quite a few of the people had left journals and of course about half of them survived He mentions that one of the survivors was still alive at the time of his writing but he she must have been pretty old as the ordeal took place in 1846 Stewart is a good writer so that added to the suspense of the story There have been a lot of stories about the Donnor Party but this one seems to be the real deal I highly recommend it if you can find it I plan to read by Stewart.
True life horror story of the Donner Party emigrants that end up stranded in the Sierra Nevada mountains in 1846 originally written in 1936 and revised in 1961, it pulls no punches while still maintaining an objectivity that avoids lurid sensationalism A bit dated in style and ethnic sensitivity It s a little like a Tolstoy novel because of the number of characters involved and the back and forth of the various parties and rescue missions.
You will never forget the vision of the rescuers finding some of the enfeebled, dead, and starving survivors at the bottom of a 25 foot snow and ice crater surrounded by the half eaten corpses of their neighbors and family, their entrails still in the stew pot over the fire.
At once a testament to both the heroism and desperation that huma Ordeal by Hunger is, um Dated is the kindest word I can think of The naivete of Stewart s racism is almost charming except for the part where it makes me want to throw the book across the room He s also prone to sentimentality about the heroism of the men of the party and the pathos to be milked from the plight of the women and children, and I object to the explicit trivializing of the children s experiences and equally explicit privileging of the men s There is the story, for instance, of how little Eliza Donner cried herself to sleep that next night because Miller had promised her a piece of loaf sugar if she would walk a certain distance, and then had harshly told her that there was no sugar And then how, the morning after, he would have beaten her because she would not walk, if Foster and Eddy had not peremptorily stopped him But after all, this is onl In the longstanding tradition of adoring nonfiction where historical people suffer and die and suffer some , I loved Ordeal by Hunger Donner Party tales are a dime a dozen It is arguably the proto die and suffer nonfiction A group of pioneers whose tragedy was built for consumption Even back in 1846, the story quickly traveled back to the East Coast, reproduced in countless local papers, despite the lack of telecommunications or trains It is a story that must be told.
Author George Stewart s depiction emerges from the many depictions of this story for two reasons First, it recognizes the need for build up We do not begin the book with the Donners racing to cross the Sierra as winter approaches Rather, we begin way back in Wyoming, at the end of July, as the wealthy pioneers decide Stewart focuses on forming an accurate logistical picture of the travels and trials of 87 members of the Donner Party against a harsh environment, whose wagon train came together around July 1846 near the Great Salt Lake and headed to California over a newly inspired yet little tested route over a dangerously steep pass in the Sierra Nevadas, which the trusted and well traveled Hastings recommended they try in order to save 300 miles had they taken the known and therefore safer emigration trail around the mountains Unfortunately the going is rough in Utah and Nevada, and they are doomed to hunker down and camp beside what is now known as Donner Lake This tale of tragedy and triumph ends in April 1847, after several relief parties often comprised of family members of the original caravan made successful rescues over the course of the long and brutal winter featurin
This was a fascinating tale of true strength and bravery like no other I have read My boyfriend is a truck driver so he drives Donner s Pass a lot and he has told me about it, so when I saw the made for TV mini series on the Weather Channel over Thanksgiving, I knew I would want to read about this ordeal Boy, what an ordeal I mean being in cold freezing snowy weather when people were dropping like flies and then eating them in order to survive I WOULD DIE IN A HEART BEAT Excellent book and an interesting tid bit in history.
I read this book for two reasons 1 I grew up in northern California and we would drive through Donner s Pass from time to time.
2 I ve been into true survival stories lately, most notably 127 Hours and the 1972 Uruguayan plane crash It s almost hard to believe what they went through, even before getting trapped in the mountains They got lost, had to carve their own trail, attacked by Indians, and almost died of thirst on the Salt Lake flats That s before they got trapped in the Sierras and had to resort to cannibalism It s definitely one of the bleakest books I ve ever read There wasn t helicopters for a rescue, and there were children involved It s hard not to blame it on men s stupidity and arrogance What type of men would bring their women and children on an untested shortcut when there was an established and safe trail Though no one deserved what t Most people know at least a little bit about the Donner party of 1846 Probably all of them know something about the cannibalism The whole story of the Donner Party is so much fascinating and important than the sensational tidbits that might get tossed around in casual conversation Ordeal By Hunger was written in 1936 90 years after the events it describes and vividly tells the story of hardships endured by a handful of rugged individuals and families who followed their dreams and sought out the adventure of a new life in the unsettled and disputed territory of California One decision that of following the unproven but shorter Hastings Cutoff rather than the traditional California Trail precipitated and one could argue directly caused their future calamities.
This is a book that I would recommend to almost everyone except, of course, for
Among Americans anyway, you only have to say, the Donner party and the immediate association is cannibalism That much I knew, but little else.
From the moment I picked up Ordeal by Hunger two nights ago, I have scarcely been able to think about, much less read anything else Although I am not a believer in luck, the saying, if they didn t have bad luck, they had no luck at al The Tragedy Of The Donner Party Constitutes One Of The Most Amazing Stories Of The American West In Eighty Seven People Men, Women, And Children Set Out For California, Persuaded To Attempt A New Overland Route After Struggling Across The Desert, Losing Many Oxen, And Nearly Dying Of Thirst, They Reached The Very Summit Of The Sierras, Only To Be Trapped By Blinding Snow And Bitter Storms Many Perished Some Survived By Resorting To Cannibalism All Were Subjected To Unbearable Suffering Incorporating The Diaries Of The Survivors And Other Contemporary Documents, George Stewart Wrote The Definitive History Of That Ill Fated Band Of Pioneers An Astonishing Account Of What Human Beings May Endure And Achieve In The Final Press Of Circumstance