Library of Fur Trade Historical Source Documents

Diaries, Narratives, and Letters of the Mountain Men


These documents are accounts of the Rocky Mountain fur trade during the first half of the 19th century. Most of these are either primary or secondary historical sources; that is, either written by, or as told by those who were actually there.

These documents have been transcribed from printed or manuscript form. The resulting text files have been manually checked and edited to conform to the original source. In most cases, any spelling or grammatical errors from the original have been retained.

Rocky Mountain Rendezvous - 1825-1840


  • Ashley, William H. 1825 Papers.
  • Ball, John. Across the Plains to Oregon, 1832.
  • Beall, Thomas J. Recollections of Wm. Craig.
  • Brackenridge, Henry Marie, Journal of a Voyage up the Missouri River, in 1811.
  • Bradbury, John, Travels in the Interior of America, in the Years 1809, 1810 and 1811.
  • Campbell, Robert. Rocky Mountain Letters.
  • Catlin, George. Letters and Notes on the Manners, Customs, and Conditions of North American Indians.
  • Clyman, James. Narrative: My trip in & through the Rockey Mountains in the years 1824-25, 26, 27, 28 and a portion of 1829.
  • Crooks, Ramsey. Who Discovered South Pass?
  • Fayel, William. A Narrative of Colonel Robert Campbell's Experiences in the Rocky Mountain Fur Trade from 1825 to 1835.
  • Ferris, Warren Angus. Life in the Rocky Mountains.
  • Franchere, Gabriel, Voyage to the Northwest Coast of America, 1811, 1812, 1813 & 1814.
  • Hunt, Wilson Price. Diary of the overland expedition to Astoria.
  • Irving, Washington. Astoria.
  • Irving, Washington. The Adventures of Captain Bonneville.
  • James, Thomas. Three Years Among the Indians and the Mexicans.
  • Larpenteur, Charles. Forty Years a Fur Trader, 1833-72.
  • Leonard, Zenas. Narrative of the Adventures of Zenas Leonard, fur trader and trapper, 1831-1835.
  • Luttig, John, Journal of a fur-trading expedition on the Upper Missouri, 1812-1813.
  • Meek, Stephen Hall. The Autobiography of Stephen Hall Meek.
  • Menard, Pierre. Reports of Missouri Fur Co. activities at Three Forks of the Missouri, 1810.
  • Newell, Robert. Memoranda: Travels in the Teritory of Missourie.
  • Ogden, Peter Skene. Snake Country Journals.
  • Pattie, James O. The Personal Narrative of James O. Pattie, of Kentucky.
  • Potts, Daniel T. Rocky Mountain Letters.
  • Ross, Alexander. Adventures of the First Settlers on the Oregon or Columbia River, 1810-13.
  • Ross, Alexander. Journal of Snake Country Expedition, 1824.
  • Russell, Osborne. Journal of a Trapper.
  • Ruxton, George Frederick. Wild Life in the Rocky Mountains, 1846-57.
  • Sage, Rufus. Rocky Mountain Life, 1841-43.
  • Smith, Jedediah.  Jedediah Smith's Journals of his two expeditions from the Rocky Mountains to California, 1826-1828.
  • Spalding, Henry H. A Letter By Henry H. Spalding From The Rocky Mountains, 1836.
  • Thomas, Dr. 1809 Journal.
  • Townsend, John Kirk. Across the Rockies to the Columbia.
  • Victor, Frances Fuller. The River of the West: Joe Meek's Years in the Rocky Mountains.
  • Whitman, Mrs. Narcissa Prentice. Letters of Mrs. Narcissa Prentice Whitman, 1836.
  • Wislizenus, F. Adolphus. A Journey to the Rocky Mountains in 1839.
  • Work, John. Journals while in the service of Hudson's Bay Co.
  • Wyeth, John B. Oregon, or a Short History of a Long Journey.
  • Wyeth, Nathaniel. The Journals of Captain Nathaniel J. Wyeth's Expeditions to the Oregon Country and Selected Letters.