Historical basis for Hell on Wheels star

Olive_Oatman,_1857For fans of TV series “Hell on Wheels”, it can be easy to get caught up in the drama and enticing sets created to bring the viewer back into the railroad boom of the west. However, actual historical character such as Olive Oatmen, known in the show as Eva Toole, are hidden within the the captivating sets, according to Yareah author Isabel del Rio. 

“When she was little, her family tried to move to California, searching a better life. But the Oatmans were attacked by Yavapai Indians at the Gila River (current Arizona) and she and her sister were enslaved,” the article reads.


Oatman’s life inspired many books, including a biography of her struggles entitled “The Blue Tattoo: The Life of Olive Oatman” by Margot Mifflin. 

To read more about the historical basis behind the tattooed character of “Hell on Wheels” click here.