The Luckiamute River of Oregon flows into the Willamette from the west not far south of the Monmouth-Independence area where the editor of this set of books has lived for many years. The Luckiamute pronounced LUCKY. ah-mute, with accent on the first syllable) flows through the beautiful Kings Valley,1 named for Nahum King, whose two sons were involved in the life of Anna Maria King, the writer of this choice letter. Although the typed and printed versions were signed both by Stephen and Maria, it is clear from internal evidence that the letter was written by the wife. Her name appears in various other records as Maria, Mariah, and Marie. She seems to have signed it both as Maria and Mariah. She also used two spellings for her first name, Anne and Anna.
The letter is dated 1846, but it tells of the cross-country journey of the pioneers of 1845. The copy we have used was mimeographed by the Works Progress Administration County and Local Historical Records Survey of Oregon sometime during the presidency of Franklin Delano Roosevelt. In the introduction a field worker tells that it came from a typewritten copy of a newspaper story that had been found in the pocket of Solomon King at the time of his death on March 13, 1913. A notation indicates that Maria was the wife of Solomon King, yet the names signed____________________
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Publication information: Book title: Covered Wagon Women:Diaries & Letters from the Western Trails, 1840-1849. Volume: 1. Contributors: Kenneth L. Holmes - Editor, Kenneth L. Holmes - Compiler. Publisher: University of Nebraska Press. Place of publication: Lincoln, NE. Publication year: 1995. Page number: 39.
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