Learn more about the people who helped shape the history of the Trail!
To discover the person's story, click on the person's name or picture for more information.
Emigrant Names Search
Search for emigrant names in the "Paper Trail" database. The database provides information from thousands of trail-related documents of the mid-19th century western migration. Whether people traveled west for gold, land, religious freedom or new opportunity, they wrote diaries, letters, articles and recollections about the journey. From over 3,500 original documents, Paper Trail organizes information into an easy-to-search database, featuring names, dates, routes, travel parties, locations and interesting features. The information from each document is searchable by emigrant name or by author. The name search is free; further searches require a modest subscription payment.
The Oregon-California Trails Association, with support from the National Park Service, updates the Paper Trail website as more historical documents are found.
Last updated: February 15, 2022