Redefined by territorial expansion in the mid-1800s, the boundary of the American West shifted from the Mississippi River to the Pacific Ocean, fueled largely by exploration and emigration along the Oregon Trail, among others.
Over the course of fifty years, almost 400,000 people traveled the 2,170-mile route, leaving their farms along the East Coast in hopes of securing fertile land in the Oregon Territory.
American artist Albert Bierstadt documented his journey on the trail, capturing the dramatic panoramas and indomitable spirit of the emigrants on his oversized canvases. With their rich colors and pristine details, these romanticized images roused an already fascinated American public to begin their own westward adventure.
Oklahoma City, OK
Oil on canvas
67" x 102"