Is this a Westward Ho! badge-request thread? Yes it is.

+16 votes

In response to popular demand, I'm opening this thread for members to request the Westward Ho! Project badge. This project currently lacks a Project Leader, so it is officially inactive, but there are some active sub-projects, so the badge can be helpful to identify members who are enthusiastic about this topic.

The Westward Ho! Project is a "top level" project to help tell the stories of the people who contributed to the exploration, settlement, and sometimes the exploitation of the American West (roughly defined as the region west of the Mississippi River).

There are 8 sub-projects with their own missions (but all sub-projects use the same badge):

Please post an ANSWER in this thread (not a "comment") to request a badge. In your answer, tell us what you are working on -- or hope to work on  -- in the context of Westward Ho!

WikiTree profile: Westward Ho Project WikiTree
in Requests for Project Volunteers by Ellen Smith G2G Astronaut (1.1m points)
retagged by Ellen Smith

11 Answers

+5 votes

Immigrant Pioneers sub-project of Westward Ho now has its own sticker.  Thank you Ellen!

Go here for more information. Place {{Immigrant Pioneers}} below == Biography == to add the sticker to a profile.

by T Stanton G2G6 Pilot (156k points)
I'm finding many Native American profiles inaccurately templated with Westward Ho project. I see nothing on the WH project page that includes Native Americans. Please clarify.

Jillaine, project leader, Native Americans project
Jillaine, can you provide links to a few examples that are raising the concern so that I can look at what is occurring? I don't think Native Americans should be excluded from Westward Ho but if that (or sub-projects) is being used incorrectly I think we can probably clarify project language somewhere (and perhaps make more prominent mention of the "Related Projects" currently on the Westward Ho page).

Here's one:

I'm guessing that it's because he was a victim of the Trail of Tears forced migration of Native Americans from their homeland.  That doesn't quite speak "westward ho" to me.  In fact, the more I think about it, the more offensive it feels. (An oral history I just read describes a white American whipping an elderly Cherokee along the migration route.)

I think it's fine to categorize profiles of  Trail of Tears "participants" but it seems to fit more under the Native Americans project than part of Westward Ho. 

I agree with your point on this profile. Do you believe a suggestion note on Westward Ho regarding checking Native American project/sub-projects for additional or better categorization would be appropriate?

Ellen Smith and I have discussed the need for a review of profiles in some of the WH sub-projects (some have project boxes vs stickers when project is not a co-PM). I will keep an eye out for categorization issues similar to Cloud-6 and either correct them or if unsure send them over to you for a look. I'll also bring this to attention of Allison who coordinates some of the sub-projects so we have more eyes on the categorization question.
I'm also reviewing the "subprojects" of the NA project. For now, I'm guessing that most of these WH-templated Profiles of Native Americans were Trail of Tears people and therefore Cherokee.  I've added the NA tag to this thread at least temporarily hoping to get Kathie F's attention or anyone else familiar with ToT. I think it was only Cherokee.

If that's accurate, all we need to do is change the template on those profiles to

{{Native American Sticker | tribe=Cherokee}}

We may want to add a Trail of Tears category but I'd want that to be sourced.  So our project should work on that separately.

Unless Kathie or other NA  volunteers have a better idea.
The “Trail of Tears” applies to members of the southeastern Cherokee, Choctaw, Chickasaw, Creek (Muscogee) and Seminole tribes who were forcibly Removed from their traditional homeland to Indian Territory between 1830-1839.  Many other tribes were Removed to Indian Territory and Oklahoma Territory, and some members of the tribes listed above went to Indian Territory at different times or on their own, but their experiences were not part of the Trail of Tears.  None of the people who were relocated should be part of anything  called “Westward Ho,”  suggesting that there was something voluntary about their relocation.
Hi Jillaine and Kathy. As part of prep for some reorganization of Westward Ho sub-projects I reviewed the categorization lists for each sub-project and the general Westward Ho catch-all. I found no additional readily identifiable (by name or place of birth) Native Americans other than Sacajawea. Granted, the name is not always an indicator. Unless someone has already gone through and done recategorization or I've missed something due to a missing link from a category page I don't think this is large issue. I'll keep an eye out on it.
Thanks, T. I had fixed a few I came across. It will be great if there are no more.  We will also keep an eye out for them.
Since the forced movement of Native Americans from the SE US to OK is called the Trail of Tears, maybe that could be a sub of Westward Ho, or The Five Civilized Tribes, since that is who are recorded in the Dawes Rolls.
If there is a Trail of Tears project or category it should be under the Native Americans project.  The Trail of Tears applies to a very specific group, but only a small fraction of the individuals who suffered the Trail can be identified by name. I’m unclear what the value is. To me the risk of placing the category inappropriately,  and thus disrespecting those who suffered, is high. It seems to be impossible to limit any category to only documented members of a group.

T. Stanton, as project leader of Westward Ho, and I, as project leader of Native Americans, already decided that Trail of Tears is more appropriately associated with the NA project than with the WH project.
Didn't know there was an NA project, will look into it as my wife has 2 greatgrandmothers that are Cherokee
Native American is in the tags for this thread. So that is probably why people thought you guys thought it should go together since you basically said so. I'm not one of them btw just letting y'all know.
+4 votes
I'd love to work on The Wild West!

Who wouldn't, right? :-)
by C Gilliam G2G1 (1.1k points)
+5 votes

Enjoy researching those 'manifest destiny' notables who made some contribution to making it happen!  I adopt orphan profiles when I can, add sources to the unsourced and assist in building bios.   A few of my latest profiles are:

Fisher-17220, Pickett-3005, LaPrise-105, De-Lichte-5, Schwab-1286

Would love to be part of the team!  

by Scott Lee G2G6 Mach 2 (24.3k points)
edited by Scott Lee

I very much like the profiles you linked and everyone would love to have you aboard the Westward Ho team. Ellen Smith will get the badge set up for you. Let us know if you have some specific things you would be interested in working on. The project home page is here (but I think you already know it) and from there you can navigate to various sub-projects. Wild Wild West has its own members page where you can add yourself if you like.

Thanx T!  I can work wherever there is a need; I will refer to the project page.  Scott
+4 votes
Hi group!  I'm working on the Baker-Fancher party and would like to be part of the Westward Ho/Trails and Wagon Trains project.  This wagon train departed northwest Arkansas for California in April 1857.  Although overshadowed by the tale of the Donner Party, they also met a gruesome fate, never making their destination. This little known chapter in westward expansion holds an important place in the history of pre Civil War manifest destiny.
by Ronald Prentice G2G6 (6.9k points)
edited by Ronald Prentice
Terrific work so far on the Baker-Fancher Party and the Mountain Meadows Massacre.
+4 votes
I have at least a couple of ancestors who could be covered by this project. I am trying to find out more about Mikkel Kittelson -26, who emigrated from Norway to America around 1850-60 and eventually settled in Minnesota.
by Dan Sparkman G2G6 Mach 2 (21.3k points)
Dan, were you wanting to join the project? I'll have a look at Kittleson-26.
I don't have a lot of time for it at the moment, but okay, I'll join.
You have the badge now.
Well, thank you, Ellen.
+4 votes
I am interested in the Trails and Wagon Trains. My 58grandfather Daniel Matheny owned the first wagon to reach the Blue Mountains of Oregon.  I have documented many of the 1843 emigration, and plan to do more, but I am interested in others as well.  And I applied to be Leader of some sort, but never figured out how to complete that. Perhaps you can help?
by Roger Shipman G2G6 Mach 1 (15.4k points)

Hi, Roger. So glad you posted here! smiley

You already have the Westward Ho! project badge, having received it for the Trails and Wagon Trains Project back in 2017, a few months before Alison Andrus resigned from leading Westward Ho!.

The project was quiet for a very long time, and the new leadership did not receive a whole lot of information about earlier project history.  Unfortunately, it appears that your expression of interest in a leadership role is one of the pieces of information that fell through the cracks. Current project coordinators, including Todd Stanton and Ronald Prentice (who recently raised his hand to coordinate Trails and Wagon Trains) have been working to revitalize the project  Your free-space page on the Great Emigration of 1843 deserves to be categorized and linked as a part of the Trails and Wagon Trains project and expanded to become an informational page that is interlinked with people profiles, somewhat like what Mr. Prentice is trying to do on pages like Baker-Fancher Party and Mountain Meadows Massacre. I expect that Todd and Ronald will be delighted to chat with you about you ancestors, your interests, and what you want to contribute to the shared effort to document the Westward Expansion of the United States. I think it probably would be a good idea to have an additional Coordinator for Wagon Trains and Trails, to help generate more enthusiasm for telling the many distinct and fascinating stories about experiences of ancestors who traveled west on the various different wagon trains and trails.

I would be thrilled to work with Roger on improving and expanding the Trails & Wagon Trains sub project!  It is a large topic and there are many facets to add to the resources.  Let me know when Roger is official.
I gave Roger the Project Coordinator badge. Here's to your collaboration on Trails and Wagon Trains!
+4 votes
I'd like to join the Westward Ho project and the Homesteaders sub-project.  I have ancestors with documented homestead claims in California and military bounty claims in Tennessee, Minnesota, and Wisconsin.  I'd like to find mineral claims during the gold rush also!
by James Harris G2G2 (2.9k points)
You have the badge now, James. Your next step is to get in touch with the relevant Project Coordinators: Alison Andrus, T Stanton, and Bart Triesch.

Happy hunting!

Hi, James. Wonderful to have you as part of the Westward Ho team. It seems like what you are working on might fit with either Homesteaders or Pioneer Immigrants. Here's a list of Westward Ho sub-projects which also contains contact info for the various coordinators. Just let any of us know how we might be of assistance.

+2 votes

If members of the Westward Ho! Project are interested in participating in Connect-A-Thon, do not already have a team and have an interest in United States Great Plains history, I invite you to join a new team, Dust Bowlin' Daddies and Mamas, focusing on Colorado, Kansas, (eastern) Montana, Nebraska, (northeast) New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Dakota and (panhandle) Texas. I would hope to keep the team together for future Wikitree efforts, as well.

PS - May I join Westward Ho! focusing on sub-projects Homesteaders and Immigrant Pioneers. Thank you.

Dust Bowlin' Daddies and Mamas

by Ellen Curnes G2G6 Mach 6 (68.4k points)
We'd love to have you join Westward Ho, Ellen. Ellen Smith will set you up with the badge. I'm part of Twisted Thistles for the -thon but wish your new team well.
+3 votes
I'd like to join the Westward Ho project. I have an interest in the Westward Expansion era. Also on more personal (and less likely) note, I have a 2nd great grand uncle who left Wisconsin for Rapid City, South Dakota in the mid to late 1800's and apparently went missing. No one in the family heard from him or saw him again. It's kind of an impossible wish of mine to find out what happened to him.
by Chandra Garrow G2G6 Mach 3 (34.4k points)
Good to have you aboard, Chandra. Ellen Smith will get you set up with the badge.

Do you know if your second great grand uncle ever reached Rapid City? Or, did he go missing en route?
I believe he did but I'm not 100% sure. The story that traveled down my branch of the family didn't have many details. Only that a "cousin" went "out west" and disappeared. It was only recently through collaboration that I found his identity, Lorenzo Dodge, that he was actually my 2nd Ggreat grand uncle, and that he went out to South Dakota. According to the cousins I spoke to he was officially listed as missing in South Dakota in 1880, but I haven't found any actual documents yet.
Chandra, believe it or not, Lorenzo is my 6th cousin 3 times removed. Can you create a new g2g question geared toward finding out the fate of cousin Lorenzo and we'll put the Westward Ho team and maybe some of the sub-project teams to work on it. So, the last 'sighting' of him is the 1870 census when he still lives at home in Wisconsin with his parents? What is the source of his being listed as missing in 1880 in Rapid City? If it's just family lore that is fine, if there is something more specific we might have some basis on which to start the research. This will be fun!
This IS going to be fun! I've opened a question on g2g. I haven't found a source for him being listed as missing, so I think it's probably family lore.
+1 vote
My direct ancestor Green Berry Tolleson (1850-1895) bought land through the Homestead Act.
by Paul Tolleson G2G Crew (760 points)
+1 vote
I'm currently working on a lot of profile of Michigan homesteaders, and this seems like a very good fit.

by Susan DeFoe G2G6 Mach 2 (21.5k points)

Hi, Susan. Glad to have you aboard to help with the Homesteaders part of Westward Ho. Ellen Smith will get you badged. The Homesteaders sub-project page is here and please feel to contact Alison linked from that page with any questions.

Thanks. I'm looking forward to it.

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