James Felix Bridger was born March 17, 1804 in Richmond, Va. His family moved to Missouri, the eastern edge of the frontier, around 1812. He was an Army scout, wilderness guide, American mountain man, and trapper who trapped and explored all over the western United States in the early 19th century. In 1843, Jim Bridger and Louis Vasquez built a trading post (later named Fort Bridger) on the west bank of the Blacks Fork of the Green River in what is now Wyoming on the Oregon Trail. After many decades of living the free life, Bridger returned to Missouri. On July 17, 1881 , at the age of 77, Jim passed away at his farm.
What it must have been like to gather around a fire, the sun going down, and Jim telling a story! Can you see the “petrified forest, with its petrified birds, singing their petrified songs?” The tall tales that were told and the colorful exaggerations of his travels across this great nation can almost be felt at this wonderful historic site. How lucky we are to be able to call his trading post home to our amazing rendezvous.
We hope to see you in the fall with stories of your own. Happy Birthday Jim!