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Women of the Frontier    by Brandon Marie Miller order for
Women of the Frontier
by Brandon Marie Miller
Order:  USA  Can
Chicago Review Press, 2013 (2013)
Hardcover, e-Book
* *   Reviewed by Bob Walch

While some of their names are familiar, most of the women featured in this book have not received much attention. Utilizing journals, letters, and whatever else she could lay her hands on, Miller pieces together the stories of this group of amazing women whose courage, spirit and sense of adventure helped them tame their little corners of the western frontier.

While some of these ladies endured the grueling journey on the trail west, others had to make a home in a sod house or care for their families in isolated mountain cabins. Whether they farmed, ranched, kept shops, took care of the sick, fought for the rights of their native people or taught children the 3 Rs, these women contributed in one way or another to settling the western portion of the United States.

Some of the valiant women you'll meet include Margret Reed, who was one of the ill-fated Donner Party survivors, missionary wife Narcissa Whitman, who was killed along with her husband when their mission in the Oregon Territory was attacked by the Cayuse, and Susette La Flesche, who 'boldly championed the cause of Native Americans through her pen and elegant voice'.

Readers twelve and older will find the short chapters in this book an eye-opening introduction to a facet of western history that is usually ignored in the history books. By demonstrating the important role women played in settling the Wild West, this volume shows that women did more than just arrive after their men folk to raise the family and keep house. They played many roles that went far beyond being stay-at-home moms or teachers and Miller calls attention to this important fact.

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