How Many People Traveled the Oregon Trail?

And Other Questions about the Trail West

From the Series Six Questions of American History

  • Interest Level: Grade 4 - Grade 6   ·  
  • Reading Level: Grade 5

In the spring of 1843, nearly one thousand people gathered in Independence, Missouri. They came from all over the eastern United States, and many had to sell most of their possessions to afford the trip. Yet their journey was just beginning. The group set out for Oregon Country, a four- to six-month trek across plains, mountains, valleys, and rivers. Not everyone survived the difficult trip. Still, before the end of the 1800s, many more wagon trains would travel the Oregon Trail to reach what became the western United States.

So why were Americans moving west?
What hardships would they face on the journey?
And who blazed the Oregon Trail?

Discover the facts about this important trail west and how it affected U.S. history.

Format Your Price
Interest Level Grade 4 - Grade 6
Reading Level Grade 5
Genre Nonfiction
Category Social Studies
Copyright 2012
Publisher Lerner Publishing Group
Imprint Lerner Publications ™, LernerClassroom
Language English
Number of Pages 48
Publication Date 2012-01-01
Reading Counts! Level 5.5
Text Type Informational/Explanatory
BISACS JNF025080, JNF025200, JNF053240
Dewey 978'.02
Graphics Full-color illustrations
Dimensions 7 x 9
Lexile 850
Guided Reading Level T
ATOS Reading Level 5.5
Accelerated Reader® Quiz 149011
Accelerated Reader® Points 1.0
Features Bibliography/further reading, Index, Reviewed, Sidebars, Source notes, Table of contents, Teaching Guides, Timeline, and eSource


The Horn Book Guide

“Informative sidebars and colorful graphics enhance these lively narratives. Salem and Oregon Trail especially stand out because they give young readers an understanding through the eyes of people who lived at the time. Articles is a more linear, factual account, clearly showing the development of the American federal system of government.” —The Horn Book Guide


“The Six Questions of American History series investigates events in our nation’s past in the same way a journalist might—through the framework of who, what, when, where, why, and how. As a result, readers uncover the past rather than memorize it.” —Booklist

Author: Miriam Aronin

Miriam Aronin is a writer and editor living in Chicago. She also likes to knit, dance, and explore historical sites.

Lerner eSource™ offers free digital teaching and learning resources, including Common Core State Standards (CCSS) teaching guides. These guides, created by classroom teachers, offer short lessons and writing exercises that give students specific instruction and practice using Common Core skills and strategies. Lerner eSource also provides additional resources including online activities, downloadable/printable graphic organizers, and additional educational materials that would also support Common Core instruction. Download, share, pin, print, and save as many of these free resources as you like!

Six Questions of American History

Explore pivotal moments in US history, from colonial times to the Civil War. Discover the who, what, where, when, why, and how of important events such as the Pilgrims settling at Plymouth, Massachusetts, and Abraham Lincoln issuing the Emancipation Proclamation. Writing exercises at the View available downloads →