Explore the words and the myth of Little Germaine!
A vital piece of Wilbur County history, the diary of little Germaine van Bibber describes the journey to Oregon from the perspective of a ten-year-old girl. The story begins during journey preparations in Missouri, all the way to Germaines tragic end in the cave where the pioneers wintered in 1845-46. For 170 years, the diary has been meticulously preserved in the Germaine Grotto, which has been converted to a museum of Wilbur County arcana by the Daughters of Germaine.
Two years ago the Daughters allowed the contents of this important document to be recorded for digitization under the supervision of Vanessa van Bibber. Most of it was deemed too fragile to be photographed, although a few pages with Germaine’s hand drawing were photographed for the library.
As important as this historical document, is the mythology which has grown up around it. It is a vision which has come to define Wilbur County and the town of Germaine, one of community, harmony, innovation, and prosperity for all.
You can view the individual diary entries here: