South Pass

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SOUTH PASS, located in Wyoming at the southern end of the Wind River Mountains, gained noteriety because the emigrant trail to Oregon and California ran through it. There are claims that John Colter discovered the South Pass in 1807 or 1808, and that Robert Stuart and the returning Astorians crossed it in 1812, but both claims are disputed. It is certain that the effective discovery was made in 1824 by Thomas Fitzpatrick, a fur trader. Capt. Benjamin L. E. Bonneville first took wagons over the pass in 1832, and a few years later it became the mountain gateway on the Oregon Trail.


Sprague, Marshall. The Great Gates: The Story of the Rocky Mountain Passes. Boston: Little, Brown, 1964.

Dan E.Clark/f. b.

See alsoFur Trade and Trapping ; Rocky Mountains .

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South Pass

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