Twenty five women who crossed the trails to the West and settled there are saluted here. Actually the imprint left by these women is slight: one may question some inclusions, some exclusions. Here are the stories of Narcissa Whitman, the charming wife of the missionary who went to Oregon in 1836; of Josephine Meeker, captured by Ute Indians in 1879 at the White River, (Colorado) massacre; and of Frances Grummond who spent four months at Fort Phil Kearney in 1866. A canvas of divergent types -- prostitutes, actresses, wives of gold-seekers, settlers and soldiers. The book's market is among the uninitiated and girls will be more interested than boys.