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Hamilton Raven Wagon Train Diary


Scope and Contents

Biographical Note

Administrative Information

Detailed Description

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Hamilton Raven Wagon Train Diary, 1862 | Eastern Kentucky University - Special Collections and Archives

By Jackie Couture

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Collection Overview

Title: Hamilton Raven Wagon Train Diary, 1862Add to your cart.View associated digital content.

Primary Creator: Raven, Hamilton (ca 1840-1904)

Extent: 1.0 Folders

Date Acquired: 06/26/2009

Subjects: Overland journeys to the Pacific., West (U.S.)--Description and travel.

Languages: English

Scope and Contents of the Materials

This diary was written by Hamilton Raven to describe his 1862 journey from Michigan to California for his family. Raven was a school teacher, and he beautifully describes the scenery and travel conditions as he travels across the country. He also talks about the food, weather, and Indian attacks. The volume is small and he writes for only three months, but it is an excellent description of the hardships of a wagon train trip across the country.

Biographical Note

Hamilton Samuel Raven, who died near Alamo, December 27th, 1904, was born in New York but was taken to Michigan when a small child and made his home there until about twenty-three years of age. From there he came across the plains to California. While in Michigan he had started in the profession of teaching. After coming to California he took a normal course to better fit him for his chosen work. He taught for thirty years; twenty-five of them was spent in Contra Costa county, principally in the region near Walnut Creek. He was a conscientious and successful teacher who commanded the respect of his pupils. For one term he served as superintendent of schools for the county.

In 1870 he was married to Almira Baker of Walnut Creek, who died January 17, 1891. From the marriage there was one daughter and five sons. Four of the sons have taken courses in civil engineering at Berkeley and are following their profession - one in Honolulu, one in Shanghai, China, and two in the state of Washington. The youngest is still in school. Seven years ago Mr. Raven was married to Mrs. M.N. Bregard of Walnut Creek, who survives him. For several years their home has been a farm near Alamo. For some time he complained of a strange sensation in his head. About two weeks before his death he lost the use of an arm and a week later a stroke of paralysis occurred. From the first the indications seemed to him unfavorable and he made his plan for death.

The funeral services were held Friday, Dec. 29, at the M.E. Church in Walnut Creek. He had been a member of the church from early life, a faithful officer, and especially efficient as a teacher of the Bible class.

Although a modest man, slight in body and often in feeble health he was not inclined to push himself into notice. He lived an honest, conscientious life and was a consistent Christian and died respected by all.

(Hamilton Raven Obituary, Contra Costa Gazette, Contra Costa County, California, 7 Jan 1905)

Subject/Index Terms

Overland journeys to the Pacific.
West (U.S.)--Description and travel.

Administrative Information

Repository: Eastern Kentucky University - Special Collections and Archives

Physical Access Note: Item is fragile. Use transcriptions first.

Acquisition Source: Dunn, Ada Barter

Acquisition Method: gift

Box and Folder Listing

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[Folder 1],

Folder 1Add to your cart.
Item 1: Diary, May - July 1862Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Holograph diary of Hamilton Raven
Item 2: Transcriptions, May - July 1862Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Typed transcript of the original diary

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