Tuesday, May 24, 2022



Painting by Oscar Edmund Beringhouse

Life on the trail. Brave or simply desperate travelers stopped in towns like Independence and St. Joseph before joining other wagons on a trail heading into the West. Outfitters in these towns prepared the overlanders for their trip.

Without searching the Internet for the information, what food items do you think they took with them? Did bacon or flour come to mind? How about dried fruit?  I've read novels where authors include these when the book is set on a wagon train. However, I don't remember seeing crackers mentioned.

“June 3 Passed through St. Joseph on the Missouri River. Laid in our flour, cheese, crackers and medicine, for no one should travel this road without medicine, for they are almost sure to have the summer complaint. Each family should have a box of physicing pills, a quart of castor oil, a quart of the best rum and a large vial of peppermint essence.”  -Elizabeth Dixon Smith

What is the history of the common cracker? How did it get that name?

Hardtack or a sea biscuit is the forerunner of the cracker. It was originally called Pearson's Pilot Bread and was made out of only flour and water. Plain and certainly not the savory and salty saltine crackers that I love.


How did hardtack turn into a cracker? It didn't. Actually, biscuits turned into crackers. A baker burned a batch of biscuits. The biscuits "crackled" when he took them out of the oven, thus the name. 

This gave Josiah Bent, the baker, the idea of producing what became our modern cracker.  Eventually he sold his business to the National Biscuit Company. Do you recognize that name? It was shortened to Nabisco. 

Some inkling told Glory she needed to share a secret in return. Her friend’s tone sounded so vulnerable. “No, I’ve always wanted to be just like my mother. She was a wonderful woman.”

She glanced at the sick man as she continued. “But I was really afraid I’d marry a man like my pa.”

Pikes Peak or Bust! Glory’s father catches a fever—gold fever.

"This is a well written book that is filled with love, excitement, hardships, friendships and faith. I recommend this to anyone that likes clean historical western romance."--Amazon Kindle Review

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