|Rocky Mountain Rendezvous|
|Status||No longer held|
|Years active||1825 – 1840|
|Founder||William Henry Ashley|
|Participants||Fur trappers & merchants|
The Rocky Mountain Rendezvous was an annual gathering, held between 1825 to 1840 at various locations, organized by a fur trading company at which trappers and mountain men sold their furs and hides and replenished their supplies. The fur companies assembled teamster-driven mule trains which carried whiskey and supplies to a pre-announced location each spring-summer and set up a trading fair (the rendezvous). At the end of the rendezvous, the teamsters packed the furs out, either to normally the British Companies to Fort Vancouver in the Pacific Northwest for the British companies or to one of the northern Missouri River ports such as St. Joseph, Missouri, for American companies.
Rendezvous were known to be lively, joyous places, where all were allowed—fur trappers, Indians, native trapper wives and children, harlots, travelers and later tourists—who would venture from as far as Europe to observe the festivities. James Beckwourth describes: "Mirth, songs, dancing, shouting, trading, running, jumping, singing, racing, target-shooting, yarns, frolic, with all sorts of extravagances that white men or Indians could invent."
Rendezvous are still celebrated as gatherings of like-minded individuals. The fur trading rendezvous are celebrated by traditional black-powder rifle clubs in the U.S. and Canada. These events range from small gatherings sponsored by local clubs to large gatherings like the Pacific Primitive Rendezvous, the Rocky Mountain National Rendezvous, and others. They include many of the activities as the originals, centering on shooting muzzle-loading rifles, trade guns and shotguns; throwing knives and tomahawks; primitive archery; as well as cooking, dancing, singing, the telling of tall tales and of past rendezvous. Personas taken on by participants include trappers, traders, housewives, Native Americans, frontiersmen, free-trappers and others, including soldiers.
Jedediah Strong Smith, was an American clerk, transcontinental pioneer, frontiersman, hunter, trapper, author, cartographer, and explorer of the Rocky Mountains, the North American West, and the Southwest during the early 19th century. After 75 years of obscurity following his death, Smith was rediscovered as the American whose explorations led to the use of the 20-mile (32 km)-wide South Pass as the dominant point of crossing the Continental Divide for pioneers on the Oregon Trail.
A mountain man is an explorer who lives in the wilderness. Mountain men were most common in the North American Rocky Mountains from about 1810 through to the 1880s. They were instrumental in opening up the various emigrant trails allowing Americans in the east to settle the new territories of the far west by organized wagon trains traveling over roads explored and in many cases, physically improved by the mountain men and the big fur companies originally to serve the mule train based inland fur trade.
James Pierson Beckwourth, was an American mountain man, fur trader, and explorer. Beckwourth was also famously known as "Bloody Arm" because of his skill as a fighter. He was mixed-race and born into slavery in Virginia. He was freed by his white father, and apprenticed to a blacksmith so that he could learn a trade.
William Henry Ashley was an American miner, land speculator, manufacturer, territorial militia officer, politician, frontiersman, trapper, fur trader, entrepreneur, and hunter. Ashley was best known for being the co-owner with Andrew Henry of the highly successful Rocky Mountain Fur Incorporated, otherwise known as "Ashley's Hundred" for the famous mountain men working for the firm from 1822–1834.
David Edward Jackson was an American pioneer, trapper, fur trader, and explorer. Born in what is now West Virginia, as a married man he moved with his family to Ste. Genevieve, Missouri, where in 1822 he became a clerk for the William Ashley and Andrew Henry fur trade partnership, based in St. Louis, Missouri joining a major expedition to the upper Missouri River.
The enterprise that eventually came to be known as the Rocky Mountain Fur Company was established in St. Louis, Missouri, in 1822 by William Henry Ashley and Andrew Henry. Among the original employees, known as "Ashley's Hundred," were Jedediah Smith, who went on to take a leading role in the company's operations, and Jim Bridger, who was among those who bought out Smith and his partners in 1830. It was Bridger and his partners who gave the enterprise the name "Rocky Mountain Fur Company."
Major Andrew Henry was an American miner, army officer, frontiersman, trapper and entrepreneur. Alongside William H. Ashley, Henry was the co-owner of the highly successful Rocky Mountain Fur Company, otherwise known as "Ashley's Hundred", for the famous mountain men working for their firm from 1822 to 1832. Henry appears in the narrative poem the Song of Hugh Glass, which is part of the Neihardt's Cycle of the West. He is portrayed by John Huston in the 1971 film Man in the Wilderness and by Domhnall Gleeson in the 2015 film The Revenant, both of which depict Glass's bear attack and journey.
Caleb Greenwood was a Western U.S. fur trapper and trail guide.
William Lewis Sublette, also spelled Sublett, was an American frontiersman, trapper, fur trader, explorer, and mountain man. After 1823, he became an agent of the Rocky Mountain Fur Company, along with his four brothers. Later he became one of the company's co-owners, exploiting the riches of the Oregon Country. He helped settle and improve the best routes for migrants along the Oregon Trail.
Osborne Russell was a mountain man and politician who helped form the government of the U.S. state of Oregon. He was born in Maine.
For a list of other individuals by the same name, see Robert Campbell.
Pierre's Hole is a shallow valley in the western United States in eastern Idaho, just west of the Teton Range in Wyoming. At an elevation over 6,000 feet (1,830 m) above sea level, it collects the headwaters of the Teton River, and was a strategic center of the fur trade of the northern Rocky Mountains. The nearby Jackson's Hole area in Wyoming is on the opposite side of the Tetons.
Milton Green Sublette, was an American frontiersman, trapper, fur trader, explorer, and mountain man. He was the second of five Sublette brothers prominent in the western fur trade; William, Andrew, and Solomon. Milton was one of five men who formed the Rocky Mountain Fur Company to buy out the investment of his brother William L. Sublette, Jedediah S. Smith and Dave E. Jackson.
Antoine Godin, an Iroquois Canadian fur trapper and explorer, is noted primarily for the public murder of a Gros Ventre chief which led to a battle between fur traders and Indians in Pierre's Hole, now called the Teton Basin, in eastern Idaho.
The Fort Bridger Rendezvous is an annual reenactment of fur trading as it happened from 1825 to 1840 between mountain men, Native Americans, fur trappers and traders. The event takes place at Fort Bridger, Wyoming on first weekend of September. This family-friendly event is one of the largest mountain man gatherings in the nation.
John Henry Weber (1779–1859) was an American fur trader and explorer. Weber was active in the early years of the fur trade, exploring territory in the Rocky Mountains and areas in the current state of Utah. The Weber River, Weber State University, and Weber County, Utah were named for Weber.
Eastern Shoshone are Shoshone who primarily live in Wyoming and in the northeast corner of the Great Basin where Utah, Idaho and Wyoming meet and are in the Great Basin classification of Indigenous People. They lived in the Rocky Mountains during the 1805 Lewis and Clark Expedition and adopted Plains horse culture in contrast to Western Shoshone that maintained a Great Basin culture.
The Oregon Trail is a historic 2,000-mile (3,264-km) trail used by American pioneers living in the Great Plains in the 19th century. The emigrants traveled by wagon in search of fertile land in Oregon's Willamette Valley.
The fur trade in Montana was a major period in the area's economic history from about 1800 to the 1850s. It also represents the initial meeting of cultures between indigenous peoples and those of European ancestry. British and Canadian traders approached the area from the north and northeast focusing on trading with the indigenous people, who often did the trapping of beavers and other animals themselves. American traders moved gradually up the Missouri River seeking to beat British and Canadian traders to the profitable Upper Missouri River region.
Hiram Scott (1805–1828) was an American mountain man, trapper, and pelt trader who trapped and took part in expeditions throughout the western United States during the 1820s. Born in Missouri, Scott joined the Rocky Mountain Fur Company in 1822 and took part in the first fur trade expedition at the Great Salt Lake in Utah. He died at age 23 near a cliff along the North Platte River in Nebraska which was named in his honor. The circumstances leading to his demise have given rise to many diverse accounts and theories.
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