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Into the West… from the East

Following Phileas Fogg's lengthy voyage across the Pacific Ocean we finally arrive in San Francisco for the first of 8 lectures on American destinations and themes. A culture-packed 9 days await you as our Accredited Lecturers expertly guide you towards Phileas' final leg of his epic journey. All lectures and events are free for Virtual Travellers. Register for or enter the Virtual Travellers Area here. We start TODAY with Mark Meredith as he takes us on a tour of Randolph Hearst's three sumptuous properties in California - notably Hearst Castle at San Simeon, now a National Historic Landmark - giving us a window into the extraordinary life of the world's first media magnate who lavished his millions on his insatiable appetite for art, antiques, and castles. Peter Medhurst will then lead us through some of the most popular songs of the late 1800s, giving us a flavour of the sounds Phileas might have experienced during his journey across America. As Phileas travelled east from San Francisco across the Great Plains, he would have passed close to the site of what people now call ‘the last great buffalo hunt’, which had taken place a few months earlier in January 1872. Toby Faber describes that hunt, and introduces the five fascinating individuals who took part. Mark Ovenden uses Phileas Fogg's railroad journey across the United States as the launchpad for this gripping talk on the mapping of railways across this vast country. You’ll hear about how the ‘West’ was opened up by the train, how engineers overcame complex natural barriers like the Rocky Mountains, and what Phileas Fogg’s journey to Medicine Bow looks like today. Lydia Bauman examines the real life inspirations behind Grant Wood's iconic depiction of rural life in America in his 1930 painting American Gothic. Follow our further progress through The Dust Bowl, the Windy City and finally the next port in the Big Apple with Accredited lecturers John Francis, Rosalind Whyte and Deborah Jenner. Also enjoy our recorded live events, all available in our Virtual Travellers Area where you can also register for upcoming live events. All our lectures are recordings so it’s not too late to invite your friends, catch up on the stops you’ve missed, or watch them again. Go to the 80 DAYS website

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