BUTTERFIELD OVERLAND STAGE Stage service operated between St. Louis and San Francisco between 1857 and The route was miles and took 25 days on average. El Paso, Texas was an important station along the way. The railroad would not arrive there until
Black Hills Expidition | Lieutenant Colonel George Custer and his crew left from North Dakota to search for a route to the southwest and find gold. They also wanted to find a spot to make a fort in the Black Hills of South Dakota.
A family of settlers heads west in this photograph taken in the1880s. During the thousands of nineteenth-century treks across the continent, children and their mothers were often casualties of a father's desire for a better life in the West.
The Prairie Schooner was the first choice for long-distance family travel across the American prairies in the 1800s. The discovery of gold in California in 1848 and the 1862 Homestead Act sent many daring souls in the eastern United States on a 2000 mile adventure into the west, and he primary choice of transportation for pioneer families and fortune hunters was a practical one: a cloth-covered wagon.
Prospectors who came to Helena, Montana, could be a deadly bunch. In 1867, gunfighter John Bull killed gambler-gunman Langford Peel on Helena’s Main Street (photo, 1879). Five years before, Bull had the upper hand in a gunfight with horse thieves in the mining camp of Gold Creek.