Fort Bridger, Wyoming

Trading Post for Indians, Mountain Men and Westward Migrants


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About the Book

For nearly fifty years, Fort Bridger played a role in all major events of the 19th century Rocky Mountain frontier and westering experience. Founded in 1842 by mountain man Jim Bridger, this southwestern Wyoming post was one of the most important outfitting points for travelers on the Oregon Trail, riders of the Pony Express, the Overland Stage, and the Union Pacific Railroad. Trappers, buffalo hunters, Forty-niners, soldiers and outlaws would pass through what is now the Fort Bridger State Historic Site.
This post, or fort, is used as a basis for an illustrated account of the Rocky Mountain West. The book explores reasons why American Indian behavior varied between helpfulness and aggression toward mountain men and emigrants. Also detailed are weapons of the frontier, Fort Bridger’s role in the 1857 Mormon War, the 1867 Wind River Mountains gold rush, and the Great Diamond Hoax of 1872. Several appendices are presented, including a discussion of gender in the westering movement and a selected chronology of frontier history.
Interesting and highly detailed excerpts are taken from such primary sources as a trapper’s journal and an 1850 account of buffalo butchering.

About the Author(s)

Hunt Janin is an American writer living in southwestern France. He has written numerous nonfiction and scholarly books on a range of subjects, including medieval history and cross-cultural studies.

Bibliographic Details

Hunt Janin
Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 200
Bibliographic Info: 54 photos, maps, appendices, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2006 [2001]
pISBN: 978-0-7864-2912-7
eISBN: 978-0-7864-5037-4
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations      vii

List of Maps      x

Preface      xi

Introduction      1

1. Looking for the Frontier West       7

2. Westering      14

3. Indians of the Northern Rockies      23

4. Mountain Men and the Fur Trade      40

5. Gentiles and Saints: The Great Migrations      57

6. Crossroads of the West      77

7. Gold, Silver and Diamonds      95

8. Frontier Ways of Life: Soldier, Cowboy, Outlaw, Sheepman, Buffalo Hunter       106

9. Frontier Weapons      126

10. The West of Our Imagination      142

Appendices      151

Selected Chronology      163

Bibliography      167

End Notes      173

Index      185

Book Reviews & Awards

“well-told”—True West.