Archive for April, 2013

April Announcement for the Utah Westerners




Nathaniel Jarvis Wyeth is not numbered among America’s greatest heroes. The successful Boston ice merchant is considered a failure in the fur trade, yet Wyeth was a practical businessman with an adventurous Yankee spirit that led him twice across the continent and back, in 1832 and again in 1834, prior to the development of reliable maps or emigrant trails. Wyeth’s contributions to westward expansion have been largely overlooked by historians. Historian and author, Jim Hardee’s newest book, Obstinate Hope, is part one of a two-part examination of the life of Nathaniel J. Wyeth.

Jim’s talk will begin with a look at Wyeth’s pre-fur trade life including his heritage, operation of the family’s Fresh Pond Hotel, and his early career in the ice industry. The bulk of the presentation will detail Wyeth’s first expedition to the West (1832-1833), using his letters and journals as its base. The narrative follows Wyeth on his trip to the fur trade rendezvous in Pierre’s Hole, on to the Pacific Northwest, and then back to the East Coast. Wyeth’s journal entries will be accompanied by commentary, providing insight into Wyeth’s experiences. Hardee’s telling of Nathaniel Wyeth’s story is supplemented with information from the journals and letters of other people who were with him for all or part of the trip. His commentary also compares what Wyeth encountered in the West with events and occurrences from other trapper diaries.

Jim Hardee is the editor of the Rocky Mountain Fur Trade Journal, published by the Sublette County Historical Society and the Museum of the Mountain Man in Pinedale, Wyoming. Jim is the author of Pierre’s Hole: The Fur Trade History of Teton Valley, Idaho. Not confined to works in print, Hardee has also provided commentary in television documentaries, including “Taming the Wild West: The Legend of Jedediah Smith,” produced by The History Channel in 2005. Jim is also the director of the FurTradeResearchCenter and is a presenter for many conferences and symposiums. He has published numerous articles on various fur trade topics, and lives in Pierre’s Hole, Idaho.


April 17, 2013 at 9:03 am Leave a comment

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