Ask a question about 'Thomas Fitzpatrick (trapper)'
Start a new discussion about 'Thomas Fitzpatrick (trapper)'
Answer questions from other users
, known as "Broken Hand", was a trapper and a trailblazer who became the head of the Rocky Mountain Fur Company
The Rocky Mountain Fur Company, sometimes called Ashley's Hundred, was organized in St. Louis, Missouri in 1823 by General William H. Ashley and Major Andrew Henry . They posted advertisements in St. Louis newspapers seeking "One Hundred enterprising young men . ....
. With Jedediah Smith
Jedediah Strong Smith was a hunter, trapper, fur trader, trailblazer, author, cartographer, cattleman, and explorer of the Rocky Mountains, the American West Coast and the Southwest during the 19th century...
, he led a trapper band that discovered South Pass
South Pass is two mountain passes on the Continental Divide in the Rocky Mountains in southwestern Wyoming. The passes are located in a broad low region, 35 miles broad, between the Wind River Range to the north and the Oregon Buttes and Great Divide Basin to the south, in southwestern Fremont...
Wyoming is a state in the mountain region of the Western United States. The western two thirds of the state is covered mostly with the mountain ranges and rangelands in the foothills of the Eastern Rocky Mountains, while the eastern third of the state is high elevation prairie known as the High...
He shepherded the first two emigrant wagon trains to Oregon, including the Bartleson-Bidwell Party
In 1841, the Bartleson–Bidwell Party led by Captain John Bartleson and John Bidwell, became the first American emigrants to attempt a wagon crossing from Missouri to California.-The trail:...
. He was the official guide to John C. Fremont
John Charles Frémont , was an American military officer, explorer, and the first candidate of the anti-slavery Republican Party for the office of President of the United States. During the 1840s, that era's penny press accorded Frémont the sobriquet The Pathfinder...
on his longest expedition. He guided Col. Philip Kearny
Philip Kearny, Jr., was a United States Army officer, notable for his leadership in the Mexican-American War and American Civil War. He was killed in action in the 1862 Battle of Chantilly.-Early life and career:...
and his Dragoons along the westward trails to impress the Native Americans with their howitzers and swords.
Fitzpatrick helped negotiate the Fort Laramie treaty of 1851
Although many European and European-American migrants to western North America had previously passed through the Great Plains on the Oregon and Santa Fe Trails, the California gold rush greatly increased traffic...
, at the largest council ever assembled of Native Americans of the Plains. Among the most colorful of mountain men, Fitzpatrick was also party to many of the most important events in the opening of the West.