Skip to main content

Colter, John

John Colter (kōl´tər), c.1775–1813, American trapper and guide, b. Virginia. In 1803 he enlisted in the Lewis and Clark expedition and in 1806, on the return trip, was granted a discharge to join a party of trappers. The following year, on his way to St. Louis, he met the expedition of Manuel Lisa and was engaged to guide the party to the mouth of the Big Horn, where a post was built. Lisa sent Colter on a mission to the Crow. His exact route is not certain, but he is believed to have crossed, alone and on foot, the Wind River Mts. and the Teton range, and he may have been the first white man to see the region that he traversed (now included in Yellowstone National Park). He was severely wounded in a battle between the Crow and Blackfoot, but he escaped and made his way back to the post. In 1809 he guided an expedition of the St. Louis Missouri Fur Company to the Three Forks of the Missouri, returning to St. Louis in 1810. He furnished very valuable data to Clark, who was compiling maps for the report of the Lewis and Clark expedition.

See biographies by S. Vinton (1926) and B. Harris (1952).

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Colter, John." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. 16 Nov. 2018 <https://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Colter, John." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. (November 16, 2018). https://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/colter-john

"Colter, John." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Retrieved November 16, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: https://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/colter-john

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.