Covered Wagon Sheltered Family From Cattle Stampede

A roar warns young woman of impending doom, as she and child hide in covered wagon.

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One day, more than 70 years ago, a young husband, his wife and their little child were traveling west in a covered wagon seeking a home of their own. When they stopped for the night, the husband built a fire so his wife could cook supper. Then he led the oxen and went in search of water.

The wife, barely 21, was alone with her child when she heard a terrific roar getting louder and louder. She thought it was a Kansas tornado and grasped her child close to her. She peered out the canvas door of the wagon and saw, to her horror, that a cattle stampede was headed directly toward the wagon. Several thousand range cattle covered the prairie, and as they thundered toward her she knew the wagon would be overturned and she and her child would be trampled to death.

Perhaps it was the campfire that changed the course of the cattle. Anyway, the roar began to recede. Only slight damage had been done to the wagon. This experience fills me with pride as I think of the faith and perseverance of my pioneer parents.

Mrs. Henry Hedke
Randolph, Kansas


Back in 1955 a call went out from the editors of the then CAPPER's WEEKLY asking for readers to send in articles on true pioneers. Hundreds of letters came pouring in from early settlers and their children, many now in their 80s and 90s, and from grandchildren of settlers, all with tales to tell. So many articles were received that a decision was made to create a book, and in 1956, the first My Folks title – My Folks Came in a Covered Wagon – hit the shelves. Nine other books have since been published in the My Folks series, all filled to the brim with true tales from CAPPER’s readers, and we are proud to make those stories available to our growing online community.