BBC Learning Zone Clips

CLIP 11445

Hardships of the trail west

Hardships of the trail west
Key Info
  • Hardships of the trail west
  • Duration: 03:05
  • Emigrants in 19th century America faced a long and arduous journey as they tried to find a better life for themselves in California. They had a journey of several months in wagon trains. Disease was a deadly foe but the terrain was also a major obstacle, particularly the lack of food and water. Experts and re-enactors describe the hardships faced by these settlers on their journey.
  • Subject:



    USA: The American West

  • Keywords: settler, emigrant, plains, mountains, wagon, trail, cholera, Sierra Nevada, California
Ideas for use in class
  • This clip offers the possibility to get students discussing a common exam question: Do they think that the testimony of the young settler girl is a more useful source than the comments of the present day historian?
Background details
  • Clip language : English
  • Aspect ratio : 16x9

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