Tree in the Trail

Tree in the Trail

By: Holling Clancy Holling
Published by: Houghton Mifflin Company
Publication Date: 1942
Series: Holling's Geographical History Books

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Back in 1610 a cottonwood tree began to grow on the Great Plains. Later an Indian built a barricade to protect this struggling sapling from buffaloes and marauders. Though its life was saved, buffaloes finally trampled and distorted it. Through the years it grew, and the Santa Fe Trail grew with it. It became a peace-medicine tree to the Indians, and a landmark to other travelers. Old age at last conquered this lonely giant, and wind and lightning brought it to earth in the year 1834.

But two men who had loved the old tree because it had saved their lives carved a yoke for their oxen from its trunk, covered it with rawhide to keep it from splitting, and let it lead their covered wagons on the trail to Santa Fe. In its heart were two stone arrowheads from its early Indian days, the blade of a Spanish dagger, later iron arrow points marking the time when Indians first traded with white men, and a lead ball from the gun of a French trapper. History enough for one tree and adventure and excitement to the end of the story.

Tree in the Trail does for the Southwest what Paddle-to-the-Sea did for the Great Lakes region.

From the dust jacket

Tree in the Trail Reprint

Tree in the Trail        
Reprinted in 1994 by Beautiful Feet Books
Available formats: Paperback
View on the Beautiful Feet Books site

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