In the late 1850s many of the most striking places in Wyoming, Idaho, and Montana had not yet been surveyed by any government expedition. This book brings to life the expedition that first explored these regions. As the last major government survey of the American West before the Civil War, the Raynolds Expedition began in 1859. This highly readable daily journal of Captain William F. Raynolds, previously unpublished, covers the most challenging period of that expedition, from May 7 to July 4, 1860. It describes what the Raynolds party did and saw while traveling from its winter quarters near today’s Glenrock, Wyoming, up to the head of the Wind River, through Jackson Hole, and on to the Three Forks of the Missouri in southwestern Montana. The party included legendary mountain man Jim Bridger, geologist Ferdinand Hayden, and artists Anton Schönborn and James Hutton, among the first to depict the Teton Range.
Historians, travelers, and outdoor enthusiasts will welcome this important addition to the literature of western exploration.