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Arizona State’s online magazine, Zocalo Public Square, published the essay “The Oxen Were the Unheralded Heroes of America’s Overland Trails,” by Dr. Diana Ahmad. It is also published as part of the “What It Means to Be American” project of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History.
Ahmad, a Curators’ Distinguished Teaching Professor of history and political science, describes in the essay how emigrants trekking the Oregon Trail bonded with their oxen and how essential the animals were to their success crossing the continent.