At a certain point in United States history, western expansion hit the Pacific Ocean. Having built a country whose legends included families crossing the Atlantic in search of religious and economic freedom and sagas of thousands of ‘Pa Ingalls’ who kept moving west as previously sparsely settled areas were populated, this vast body of water presented a problem. Where could the rugged individualist now go?
I’ve got good news for those who dream of living back in the days when a man could grasp the reins of his life and determine his own destiny. Today, you don’t even need to leave your own home to do so.
Whether you went west on the Oregon Trail or followed the Gold Rush frenzy, one thing was always true. Even when embarking on the journey with a group, major decisions and responsibilities lay with the individual. Blind faith in an expedition’s leader was rare. Failure and success usually depended upon one’s own instincts, skills, hard work and family.