Author

Laurel Beedle

Date of Award

2013

Document Type

Honors Thesis

Department

English

First Advisor

Beverly Matiko

Second Advisor

Bruce Closser

Abstract

Grandpa Jesse's peculiar request : an Oregon Trail adventure is a young adult road travel novel. The main character of this creative writing thesis is Erin Weston, a recent high school graduate who travels from Missouri to Portland, Oregon to visit her grandfather of his 80th birthday. Her grandfather encourages Erin to travel by car with her two best friends, Hailey and Midas, and to create a photo album as a present to him. Midas, a history and Oregon trail computer game enthusiast, convinces Erin to take the Oregon Trail route to Portland to see various landmarks such as Alcove Spring, Chimney Rock, Fort Laramie, and Soda Springs. The novel's first six chapters chronicle the teenagers' growth and introduce readers to Oregon Trail history. This carefully researched story uses first-person narration and in many ways mirrors the journey of the pioneers of the mid-1800s.

Subject Area

Oregon National Historic Trail, American fiction, Travel in literature.

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