In his epilogue to Forth to the Wilderness, James Van Every sets forth his opinion about the inner driver of the frontier people. After all, they stand out in history as a people willing to endure the most difficult set of adversities... but for what?
"Actions presenting so great a contrast to the ordinary course of human behavior indicate the power of the impulse that had gripped them. They had been moved to advance, no once, not occasionally, but again and again, into dangers as terrifying as any man can ever know. They had been sustained to endure such trials by more than a mere craving for land. They had caught a glimpse of a more complete freedom. They were people who truly valued freedom. They had come from stocks which had already set upon freedom a sufficient value to cross an ocean to a strange far land in pursuit of it. In the new world they had found a scene still cluttered with bond service, quitrents, class distinctions, legalistic inequalities. Glowing in the sky over the dark wilderness beyond the promise still beckoned.l The complete freedom they sought may have continued to elude them but the reward of seeking it had not."
Philippians 4:8, "Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things."