If you’re a homesteader or preparedness “lifestyler” (just invented that word ;) ), can you even imagine the life of the American pioneer family?
From their first arrival in Massachusetts in the 1600’s, early pioneer settlers pushed westward behind a constantly moving frontier.
Just think about it… Setting out into the frontier with a covered wagon and whatever food and gear that would fit.
They would travel across wilderness and undeveloped terrain with no previous knowledge of the area. Zero external support systems. They entirely relied on their own skills, tenacity, and thought out (and limited) supplies brought with them or in their wagon. Self reliance was a requirement on the frontier.
The pioneers were a variety of lifestylers including trappers, fur traders, hunters, frontier soldiers, surveyors, pioneer farmers.
The pioneer family would travel for weeks, months, in all sorts of conditions, weather, and dangers. Somehow surviving until they settled upon a chunk of land that suited them. But that was just the beginning…
Then they would build a home, a barn, and put in a garden field for survival. The practical knowledge, skills, and labor required to survive was astounding in comparison with today’s typical preparedness lifestyler.
The survival skills that they brought with them were absolutely essential. Some of those skills likely included:
Pioneer Family Skills
– Fire Building
– Carpentry, Building Home & Barn
– Seed Saving
– Food Preservation
– Livestock, Animal Husbandry
– Cooking, Open Fire
– Sewing, Weaving & Spinning
– First Aid & Herbal Medicine
– Soap Making
– Candle Making
– Well Drilling
Think about their daily life… Lots of hard work and difficulty.
Working sunup to sundown, lots of chores needed to be done. The whole family needed to work.
For those of us who plant a garden and understand how easy it is for it to fail (weather, disease, pests, etc.) just think about the consequences of a pioneer family losing their crop. They were literally lots closer to “life and death” situations in this regard than us!
Pioneers had to take with them the right tools for frontier life. It would probably take pages to list the things they would take with them, to the extent that the bulk and weight could be carried by horse drawn wagons.
When you read about or think about life on the frontier and what it was like, it’s stunning compared with today’s modern times.
I’m not sure of the percentage but the majority of humans on earth today would die within a short time without today’s modern systems. It’s interesting to think about how knowledge and entire skill sets are transformed over time as the human race evolves/adapts to modern changes.
The “modern” part of our society becomes increasingly dependent upon the systems that made it modern. As time marches on and older ‘less modern’ knowledge and skills are lost, we drift further away from the ability to survive naturally.
That’s progress I suppose… But is that partly what is inspiring today’s homesteaders and preparedness lifestylers? The gut instinct that we’re getting too far removed from our ancestral self reliance and self sufficiency skills? Food for thought…