Journal of Undergraduate Research


Francophone mountain men, Mormon settlement of Utah, Mormon pioneers






The Mormons’ success in the settlement of the region can be contributed to the massive influx of migrants that emigrated into the region as well as the convenience of the buffer zone in which they settled between the two tribes. However, by searching deeper into the history of the area within the development of the fur trade, the mountain men played a considerable role in the success of the Mormon settlement. Before the arrival of the Mormon pioneers, Francophone mountain men and Indian Nations of the Great Basin and Rocky Mountains participated in a vast trade network. Etienne Provost, Peter Ogden, Benjamin Bonneville, and Antoine Robidoux played a significant role in establishing positive and negative relationships with the local Shoshones and Utes that influenced future relations between Mormons and Indians after the arrival of the former in 1847. Through their efforts as guiding explorers, cartographers, and enterprising entrepreneurs, this quartet of Francophone mountain men contributed to the history of the Intermountain West in the 1830s and 40s.

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