Settlers traveling in a covered wagon soon discovered that their golden-haired toddler drew stares from Colorado Indians.
My grandparents started from Kansas to Oregon in a covered wagon in 1876 with their seven children. Little Belle, a 2-year-old golden-haired toddler , was their pride and joy. They followed the Oregon Trail over mountains and bridgeless rivers.
In Colorado, they stopped for a few days to rest the horses and do the washing. One day some Indians stopped to stare at them. They never had seen a white child with golden hair before. They wondered if baby Belle was real and they wanted to touch her. They offered to buy her, trade a horse for her, and at last they offered a quarter of dried dog meat for her! They were angry when Grandmother turned down all their offers.
The next day, little Belle went out to play and wandered away from camp while everyone was busy. When it was discovered that she was gone, the whole family hunted for her. They feared the Indians had stolen her. After much grief and worry, she was found asleep under a sage bush.
How Grandmother praised and thanked God for protecting her baby!
Aunt Belle is still alive and is 81 years old and quite feeble, but she has many memories of pioneer days in Oregon.
Mrs. J. S. Thompson
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.