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Phoebe Judson was a young bride in 1853 when she and her husband crossed the plains from Ohio to the Puget Sound area of Washington Territory She was ninety five when this book was first published in 1925 The years between were spent in “a pioneer’s search for an ideal home” and in living there when it was finally found at the head of the Nooksack River almost on the Canadian border Phoebe Judson's account of the journey west is based on daily diary entries detailing her fear excitement and exhaustion At the end of the trail the Judsons encountered hardships aplenty causing them to abandon a farm and business in Olympia before their arrival in the Nooksack Valley During the Indian Wars they holed up in a fort at Clauato In time Phoebe overcame her fear of the Indians learned the Chinook language and won their friendship All this is told in vivid detail by a woman of great dignity and charm whom readers will long remember In a foreword Susan Armitage professor of history at Washington State University calls A Pioneer's Search for an Ideal Home a classic pioneering account important for its woman's point of view


10 thoughts on “A Pioneer's Search for an Ideal Home

  1. says:

    This is my first five star book It's a gem A pioneer woman's story of traveling the Oregon Trail to Washington Territory and well looking for where to settle and build an ideal home Communication with Indians was frequent and common Many logistical stories of getting from house to town to another town in those days And many heartbreaking stories of accidents and sickness among friends and family With all she suffered it certainly is a non indulgent account A dear important lady who at age 95 saw this account published


  2. says:

    I loved this book for the honesty of the writer in telling of the pioneer times of the Pacific Northwest Phoebe Judson came to Washington Territory on a wagon train in the 1850's and gives fascinating details of that time period and their lives Sometimes while reading I would just be amazed at how much society and life have changed in just 150 years Details of the Indian Wars in Washington State are told with Phoebe expressing both her fear of some Indians as well as the friendships she and her family developed with other Indians The book closes with Phoebe and her family living in Lyndon WA the town they founded Phoebe seems like she was an amazingly strong woman She faced many hardships deaths and tragedies yet always persevered and apparently lived to the age of 94 She wrote this book shortly before her death using diaries she kept throughout her life


  3. says:

    One the best first hand pioneer accounts I've read An American treasure


  4. says:

    Wow What a fantastic story This is the first Pioneer Family Journey story I have ever read It was well writtenfrom the Book of Personal Memoirs of Phoebe Goodell Judson I felt like I was on the journey with them Very descriptive If anyone has an interest in the life of a family traveling from Ohio to Washington on the Organ Trail this would be a great book for them to read It was GREAT


  5. says:

    An amazing story of a real pioneer and how she found home in Lynden Washington


  6. says:

    This diary of an early settler in the northwest was my book club's selection for this month It tells the story of a family who crosses the plains and settles in the Puget Sound area of WA State until they got tired of the skirmishes with the Indians and finally ended up founding the town that would become Lynden WA It is the history of the general area where I reside For that reason it was enjoyable It is not a literary masterpiece and there is a great deal of repetition That said it was a piece of history that was told by a brave and industrious woman who because of her strong faith and curiosity forged ahead in terribly difficult times and with the loss of friends family members and hardships lived in harmony with the tribes in Whatcom County and had a long and fruitful life


  7. says:

    From the time she was a young bride in 1853 Phoebe Judson searched for the ideal home She crossed the plains from Ohio to the Puget Sound area of Washington Territory and settled in than one place before she discovered her ideal location for a home at the head of the Nooksack River almost on the Canadian border Phoebe's diary details the hardships and beauty of the journey west holing up in a fort during the Indian wars and gradually learning to live in peace and friendship with Native Americans Phoebe's writing vividly portrays her faith in God which sustained her through the many dangers and tragedies she faced When life gets hard read this book


  8. says:

    phoebe judson came over to washington in a covered wagon in 1853 she wrote this book when she was around 90 in 1925 and it is based on her journals starting with the westward migration it's a great look at what it was like here when white people were settling in it provides lots of ideas for pursuing info on the 'settling' of the area


  9. says:

    I am a sucker for a American West pioneer story particularly from a woman This is a satisfying memoir in that regard It is written in loooooong retrospect from the author's very late years thus I sometimes felt myself hungry for historical details and tighter chronology Nevertheless it is rich in Washington State settler history particularly my wee corner just my thing


  10. says:

    Phoebe Judson who wrote this book and her husband Holden Judson settled on the north bank of the Nooksack River This location later became the town of Lynden in Washington Territory It was in this place that my great grandmother was born While the not mentioned by name in Phoebe's memoir I have little doubt that Phoebe knew my ancestors