Across the Wide and Lonesome Prairie: The Oregon Trail Diary of Hattie Campbell, 1847 (Dear America Series)

by Dear America (Series)

Other authorsKristiana Gregory (Author)
Hardcover, 1997



Local notes

Fic Dea





Scholastic Inc. (1997), Edition: Library Binding, 168 pages


In her diary, thirteen-year-old Hattie chronicles her family's arduous 1847 journey from Missouri to Oregon on the Oregon Trail.


Original language


Original publication date


Physical description

168 p.; 7.69 inches

User reviews

LibraryThing member Maggie_Rum
This is probably my favorite Dear America book. The story feels real, Hattie is flawed, and the setting is unsettling. It's fun to read, and you learn more than you would being lectured in 5th grade history.
LibraryThing member EllieGiles
The Dear America series is a series of historical fiction chapter books which highlight the lives of children living in specific time periods in U.S. history. Each story is written as a series of diary entries made by the child it studies. This story shows the life of Hattie Campbell, a young girl
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who travels the Oregon Trial with her family.
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LibraryThing member Maidas9
I just love this book. It is an amazing bundle of feelings and a heart-pounding adventure story from long ago. Now readers have a chance to experience what happened in the Oregon Trail. An entertaining yet serious diary of Hattie Campbell.
LibraryThing member ChelseaB-ley
A fictional diary of 13-year-old Hattie Campbell as her family journeys from Booneville, Missouri to Oregon. Her family, which includes her parents and two little brothers, are leaving behind the painful memories of Booneville to start a new life. They pack as many belongings as they can into a
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covered wagon and start westward with hundreds of other hopeful families alongside them. Hattie makes several friends along the way, the first being 14-year-old Pepper. Together, they learn how to make life manageable, stay strong during times of hardship, look past people's flaws, and deal with tragedy.

This is a realistic story with friendship, a little romance, and an abundance of misfortune. At times I thought there to be too much, but overall a great book. I kept thinking it would make a wonderful movie.
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LibraryThing member kefoley
This book is a great book for history or math subjects. It really puts a great perspective on what people had to go through during the Oregon Trail. It is a great read that isn't boring and is very interesting and intriguing to read.
LibraryThing member smendel18
This is a great story about the struggles of a young girl as she travels across the wide and lonesome prarie with her family. The hardships she and her family face are truly unbelievable. Upper grades will certainly connect with the story and hopefully gain an appreciation for the struggles that
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these people had to go through to get out west.
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LibraryThing member TeacherLibrarian
Gregory, Kristiana. Across the Wide and Lonesome Praire, The Oregon Trail Diary of Hattie Campbell, 1847. (1997). New York: Scholastic.

The Campbell family travels across the Oregon Trial from Independence, Missouri to Oregon City as part of a group of 250 wagons in 1847. The book is written as the
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journal of 13-year Hattie Campbell. She tells of her experiences on the Oregon Trail form the unending dust, insets that get in the food and the bite with out ceasing, crossing rives in wagons, to the extraordinary landscapes the party comes across from time to time. Hattie also tells about the people in the party in such detail that you feel you know them. It takes months and her family has to leave almost all their possessions on the Trail, including their wagon. They reach Oregon City and find they have gained the friendship of many of their fellow emigrants.

This is an excellent historical fiction book that fives many facts in great detail and accuracy. The author has includes photos and a show historical note about the time period. She shows Hattie’s attitude toward Indians and a black man accurately for the time period and also shows her thinking about whether her attitudes are just. The detail that is used to describe objects, people, and places is excellent and draws the reader into the time period. This is good example of an historical fiction novel. It is best suited to older elementary students. It would be an excellent supplement the 5th grade social studies curriculum study of the Westward Movement.
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LibraryThing member cvogl
An historical fiction novel, written for elementary age students, this book takes place in the 1840s and follows a girl named Hattie and her family and friends as they make the long journey on the Oregon Trail. This particular book would be helpful for upper elementary-middle school age kids as
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they learn about this particular time period because it gives an overview of what exactly the Oregon Trail was. At the same time, it includes the harsh realities of living on the trail and making the long trek to Oregon in hopes of a better life. As people on the trail were challenged with many obstacles including disease, lack of food, and exhaustion, the journey on the Oregon Trail was a dangerous trip that characterized the 1800’s as the West was being explored, most of which can be seen through this book.
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LibraryThing member ababe92
This is a great book about how this girls family and her went across the country to California to look for gold. I recommend this book to young girls who like to journals. I also think that teachers should read this book because they might be able to use it when they least expect it.
LibraryThing member itsJUSTme
This was a great book. This is the book that got me started reading about the Oregon trail, this was the first!
LibraryThing member abbylibrarian
Not my favorite of the Dear America books I've listened to. Nothing wrong with the audio recording or narration. The subject matter is a little more mature than some of the others I've read - people dying left and right on the Oregon Trail (seriously - drowning, poisoned, fevers, discussion of the
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Donner party...). My main problem was that I hated the main character. Just, personally I could not connect with her. She was so judgmental! And yes, she did change her mind about being afraid of the Indians by the end, and yes, I get that in the 1800s being afraid of Indians was something that really happened and it was how people talked and all that. It was just a rather offensive road to get to the end of the story where she realized that Indians were all different, just like white folks are. While I've liked the series as a whole, I won't be recommending this particular title.
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LibraryThing member lilygirl
On the whole I enjoyed this book, as I have with most of the books from this series, but there were a few parts short parts that I did not care for at all. I say they were short because although these unfortunate plot points do not occur for a long period of time, they were by no means minor for
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me. At least when I was younger. :-) Not my favorite of the series.
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LibraryThing member psychedelicmicrobus
Loved this book when I was a kid. Still have the copy my grandma bought me. I like that Hattie is not a perfect person- she has unkind thoughts just like anybody else, and this is her (fictional) diary, so of course it would be only natural to write in one's diary the ugly things you can't say out
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loud. It contains some unpleasant subject matter, but traveling the Oregon Trail was not all sunshine and rainbows, so this is appropriate.
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LibraryThing member SRaval
This was a great emotional book that my teacher read aloud, and the whole class enjoyed listen to the worries and pains and joys that Hattie put into this book. It taught me alot about her time.
LibraryThing member jessiejluna
Written in diary form, a young girl from Missouri travels across the country via the Oregon Trail with her family to make a new home in Oregon. Starts right in with no preamble, the diary entries are short and descriptive. As the journey progresses, her sense of date and time diminish, but with
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encouragement from her aunt she keeps writing. Filled with emotion as she witnesses death, birth and the struggles of early Westward pioneers.
I couldn't put this book down. I almost wish they had never gotten there as I could have kept reading more and more stories of this girl's travels. May appeal to young (8 or 9 to 10) girls more than boys as it is more introspective than adventuresome, and reveals some early romances. Also includes some historical information at the end. I would highly recommend it for a read-aloud as there is a lot of material for discussion.
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LibraryThing member mccooln
This is such a good book to use as a read-aloud companion to studying the Oregon Trail! The girl is about the age of students studying the Oregon Trail (usually 4th grade) and so they can relate to her experiences. And it is exceptionally well written. There is drama and comedy and is written so
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vividly I teared up with one of the characters slipped into the river during a crossing. If you time it right, you could even match up Hattie's journey with the students' pretend journey on the Oregon Trail, giving them a different view of what they were just learning. Definitely makes me want to check out other books in this series to supplement other subjects.
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LibraryThing member librisissimo
Written in the style of a diary by a 13-year-old girl, chronicles some of the events of travel on the Oregon Trail in 1847. I wasn't able to find out much about the books on-line, but it looks to be derived from a variety of possibly-real diaries or sources, as many of the incidents and the
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very-basic history are consonant with more historical works.
Suitable for the target audience, but not outside that range.
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LibraryThing member librisissimo
Written in the style of a diary by a 13-year-old girl, chronicles some of the events of travel on the Oregon Trail in 1847. I wasn't able to find out much about the books on-line, but it looks to be derived from a variety of possibly-real diaries or sources, as many of the incidents and the
Show More
very-basic history are consonant with more historical works.
Suitable for the target audience, but not outside that range.
Show Less
LibraryThing member justagirlwithabook
I don't remember much of these books as individual books, but I remember reading them all as a young, avid reader. I think that ultimately these books are the reason why I love historical fiction novels so much. They all did such a great job of taking me to a different time and place and making it
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come alive, seeing the world through an older, historical lens. I highly recommend any of the Dear America books to younger readers who love history and need to get hooked on reading!
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LibraryThing member JessBass87
I read this series as a kid back when they were originally published. I remember I used to but then at Sam's Club. I loved every one I read but this one was my ABSOLUTE FAVORITE. I read it so many times the pages were falling out and the bookmark ribbon was in strings.

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