The Wide Northwest: Historic Narrative of America's Wonder Land as Seen by a Pioneer Teacher

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U of Nebraska Press, Jan 1, 2005 - History - 286 pages
Leoti L. West (1851?1933) had longed for the opportunity ?to be west and grow up with the country.? In 1878, at the age of twenty-seven, West left her Iowa home to teach at a new school in Washington Territory. Undertaking the two-week journey alone, the young teacher arrived in a Northwest that was still very much a pioneer territory. The school that West opened was one of the first in the area and soon attracted students from all over the Northwest. By the end of West?s first term, her original class of seventeen had grown to nearly one hundred students housed in a small schoolroom. In 1881 the school was officially named the Colfax Academy. West taught in Washington for more than fifty years and influenced thousands of graduates. West?s reminiscences first appeared in the Spokesman-Review as a series of pioneer sketches that were later collected and published as The Wide Northwest. Her memoir of her adventures details not only an impressive teaching career but also the pioneer experience of a woman in the late nineteenth century. Brenda K. Jackson?s introduction for this Bison Books edition provides insight into the experience of female educators during the era.

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Contents

Chapter IMy Early Life
9
Chapter IIIBeginning Colfax Academy
25
Chapter VA Jaunt to Rock Lake
47
Chapter IVA Summer Outing Chapter VIA Second Visit to Spokane Falls
55
Chapter VIIA School Entertainment
62
Chapter VIIIReverend Cushing Eells
70
Chapter IXSome Notable Pupils of the Colfax Period
79
Chapter XSome Interesting Incidents
88
Chapter XVIThe Columbus Exposition 139
139
Chapter XVIISome Notable Men and Women 146
146
Chapter XVIIIThe Baker School as a Marriage Bureau 155
155
Chapter XIXSome True Stories
163
Chapter XXSevering My Connection with Baker School
174
Chapter XXIWhitman College 182
182
Chapter XXIIRosalia
190
Chapter XXIIIRepublic
198

Chapter XIClosing My Work in Colfax
97
Second Series Chapter XIITerritorial Board of Education 104
104
Chapter XIIIExaminations and Institutes 112
112
Chapter XIVBeginning Work in Walla Walla 121
121
Chapter XVOrganising the High School 132
132
Chapter XXIVWar Time Work in Eltopia
207
Chapter XXVCamano The Beautiful 215
215
Chapter XXVIAfter Fiftyfour years Did it Pay 225
225
AppendixMiscellany
233
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About the author (2005)

Josephine Corliss Preston was the superintendent of public instruction for the state of Washington. Brenda K. Jackson is an assistant professor of history at Belmont University. She is the author of Domesticating the West: The Re-creation of the Nineteenth-Century American Middle Class(Nebraska 2005).

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