From Barbara Brackman's website..."On the last Wednesday of each month beginning January 27, 2016, I'll post a free pattern and history lesson about America's western migration. Westering Women will have patterns for 12" block designs, each chosen for a traditional name that recalls a location along the old trails from the Missouri River to the Pacific coast.You'll get a monthly view of the history of the western migration through the eyes of the women who kept diaries and wrote letters home a century and a half ago."
Barbara Brackman is an astonishing quilt designer and textile historian. She maintains a blog that tells the history of American quilting and offers reproduction fabrics. She is starting an new Block of the Month (free) which highlights the history of western migration. Not only do you get instructions on the quilt block but its history as well. This would be well worth the time to read and make the block if you like. She has several other "Block" series that utilize historic reproduction fabrics for you to go back to study. I am really looking for to keeping up with this series. Her blog gives me a feel for historic textiles that I can use when looking to make my own costumes.