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This is the exciting story of the fur traders and trappers who explored and opened up the American West in the first decades of the nineteenth century. As told by the acclaimed poet and writer John G. Neihardt, the era of the mountain men unfolds through the legendary exploits of Jedediah Smith, who ascended the Missouri River in 1822 and was killed by Comanche Indians nine years later. As Neihardt tells so well, Smith's accomplishments were many: the first white man to cross the Sierra Nevada and Great Basin from west to east; the first to travel by land to California and travel northward to the Columbia River; and the first to see that South Pass was the key travel route to the Far West. The Splendid Wayfaring also reveals the triumphs and challenges of other fur traders, many in the employ of William H. Ashley and Andrew Henry.
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