Now, you're not traveling across the world or anything. Instead, you're coming from some big established city in that section of the North American continent.
What cities would you probably be coming from? I've no clue what the city-spread was like in the north-central/eastern US around 1850. I'm pretty sure St. Louis was doing well for itself, but I have no clue if I'm ignoring some much bigger and much closer Canadian city or suchlike.