Patty Reed’s Doll:
The Story of the Donner Party

Rachel Laurgaard, Illustrations by Elizabeth Sykes Michaels

In 1846, the Donner Party is stranded by heavy snows for months in the Sierra Nevada mountains. Many die from their bitter hardships. But others survive, including eight-year-old Patty Reed, a little girl filled with dignity and determination in the face of mortal danger. This book is Patty’s story, told by Dolly, the beloved tiny doll hidden in her dress. Dolly vividly remembers days on the prairies, nights in camp, and the tiresome trek through the dry desert. During the bleak snowbound months, Dolly is Patty’s only comfort.

The story of Patty Reed and her little wooden doll gives a good picture of the true life experiences of real pioneer children. Skillfully pieced together from letters, journals, and memoirs of Donner Party survivors, this heartwarming tale shows how a little girl’s love for her doll can transcend all dangers. This book has touched the hearts of generations of school children.

Retail order only. Only one copy left.


144 pages, 5 3/8" x 8 3/8", full-color cover, map, photograph of Patty Reed’s doll, 60 illustrations, 1956.Published by Tomato Enterprises. ISBN 0-9617357-2-4 trade paper

$9.95

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