The Donner Party- more than just cannibalism

Most have heard of the Donner Party and we immediately think of the most notorious aspect: the cannibalism. But when I began researching the event for my Gift of Failure book, what struck me was the lack of leadership and the murders that occurred before the cannibalism. After all, it’s a desperate measure of last resort. What caused people to go to that last resort?

What I learned was that the preceding Cascade Events dates back to well before the party even left for the west. The Mexican War, which many don’t remember, played a role. A book published by a man who didn’t know what he was writing about, also played a key role.

So here is it (PS: the short nonfiction story is FREE on all ebook platforms)

Originally published at

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store