Shopping List for Oregon Trail

Castle Rocks

Ezra Meeker’s 1852 Memorandum of Supplies1

Tiger and Lion

Twist and Dave

Bright and Berry

Pollup and Popcorn2


150 pounds bacon,

flour, sugar, salt,

coffee, tea, and beans,

5 pounds saleratus,3


tin pans, tea kettles,

coffee pot and mill,

bake kettle, frying pan,

water keg and wooden pail


8 pounds of candles,

9 bars of soap,

6 woolen blankets,

2 pairs shoes apiece,


guidebooks and grammar books,

text of arithmetic,

the Holy Bible, heavy quilts,

3 rifles, ammunition,


sewing needles, pins, and thread,

mirrors in gilt frames,

dark-colored calico,

jeans and shirts for all,


box of physic pills,

quart of castor oil,

citric acid, laudanum,

peppermint and rum.



1 from Seeing the Elephant: Voices from the Oregon Trail by Joyce Badgley Hunsaker, p. 15
2 oxen
3 baking soda



About Judy Grigg Hansen
I write poetry and nonfiction, and I am passionate about the people, places, and wildflowers of Idaho and the Northwest.

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