American Empire

“They had done that, the people of this book: they had brought in that empire and made that war inevitable. The soldiers who followed Kearny to Santa Fe and on to California, Doniphan’s farm boys and . the Mormons slogging along with Cooke under their canopy of dust and miracle, Brigham Young’s dispossessed people, and Owl Russell, Edwin Bryant, Jessy Thornton, the Doriners. The wagon trains pulling out from Independence in· the mud and coming finally to the Willamette or the Sacramento. They had shifted the center of gravity of the nation forever.”