1818: The United States and Great Britain agreed to the “joint-occupation” – shared ownership – of the Oregon Country. Persons from either country could settle there. The Oregon Country included land that is today part of Canada. For many year Indians and fur traders were the only people living in the region.
1836: Marcus and Narcissa Whitman and other American missionaries went to the North-Country. They wanted to help the Indians and spread Christianity to the North west.
1843: The Whitmans told people back east about the rich farmland in Oregon, and many pioneer families began moving there. They traveled together in wagon trains fro protection against the Indians. The Oregon Trail stretched for 2,000 miles from Independence Missouri to the Willamette Valley of Oregon.
1844: James K. Polk used the slogan “54-40 or fight!” during his campaign for president.
1846: The United States and Great Britain agreed to divide the Oregon Country into two parts. The United States was given the southern half, and Great Britain took control of the northern half. The boundary line was the 49 degree latitude line.