The Best Land Under Heaven: The Donner Party in the Age of Manifest Destiny

Michael Wallis
Celebrated storyteller, historian, and author Michael Wallis separates fact from more than a century and a half of myth about the stranded and starving Donner-Reed party of 1846, drawing from his newly released book The Best Land Under Heaven.
Wednesday, June 7, 2017
Program: 
6:30 pm
Event Audio
A tragic chapter in America’s westward expansion turned sensationalistic when some members of the stranded and starving Donner-Reed party of 1846 began eating their dead in a desperate effort to survive. Only 48 of the 89 emigrating men, women, and children who entered the Sierra Nevada Mountains made it safely out, and the ill-fated wagon train remains a source of morbid fascination today.
 
Celebrated storyteller, historian, and author Michael Wallis separates fact from more than a century and a half of myth in his newly released The Best Land Under Heaven. The three-time Pulitzer Prize nominee discusses the unflinching book and the years he put into retracing its story, drawing from survivors’ accounts, diaries, and hundreds of other illuminating new documents.
 
Co-presented by Rainy Day Books.