A Day on
Eighteen to twenty miles a day over prairie was considered a good days travel
Pioneers were awakened shortly before daybreak by the sound of
a bugle or a shotgun from the guard.
several days on the trail,
certain routines were followed:
4:00 am: a bugler blows a trumpet or a rifle
is fired by the night guards to wake up the camp.
am: cattle are rounded up after being allowed
to graze during the night (except when Indians
am: women and children are up and fixing breakfast
of usually bacon, corn porridge or “Johnny Cakes” made
of flour and water.
6:30 am: women
rinse plates and mugs and stow bedding, while the men
haul down tents and load them in the wagons.
am: after every family has gathered their teams
and hitched them to wagons, a trumpeter signals a “Wagons
Ho,” to start the
wagons down the trail. Average distance covered in a day
was usually fifteen miles, but on a good day twenty could
7:30 am: men
ride ahead on horses with shovels to clear out a path,
“Nooning Time”: animals and people stop to eat, drink and rest.
pm: back on the trail.
pm: when a good
campsite with ample water and grass is found, pioneers
stop to set up camp for the evening. Wagons are formed
into a corral.
pm: families unpack
and make supper.
pm: mothers do
chores, men smoke and talk, young people dance.
pm: camp settles down for the night, guards go out
Midnight: night guards