July 25, 1841

Sunday, 25th. Left the rendezvous this morning, 6 of the company, viz., John Gray, Peyton, Frye, Rogers, Jones, and Romaine, started to return to the United States. Baker stopped in the mountains to trap; crossed Green river and descended it about 8 miles. Trapp and his company likewise left in search of buffalo.

Trapp, as you will recall, was Henry Fraeb (tricky name). The name also shows up as Frapp. I’ll have more about him shortly.

John Gray had been hired by the Englishman William G. Romaine to escort him on a tour of the American West. They hadn’t signed up to go to California, so it was time for them to turn back. I don’t know anything about Peyton or Jones. Bidwell describes Rogers and Amos Frye as “pleasure seekers,” what we would call tourists. Bidwell and Frye would meet up again nine years later on the East Coast. Frye came to California to work for Bidwell on Rancho Chico and died in Chico in 1852.

Baker, who “stopped in the mountains to trap,” was Jim Baker, a trapper who had attached himself to the company to travel to the Rockies. At this time he was a young man, about the same age as John Bidwell, but he would go on to a long career as a hunter, trapper, explorer, scout, and rancher, and an associate of John C. Fremont, Kit Carson, Jim Bridger, and other frontiersmen. There is a good article about him at WyoHistory,org.

James Baker in 1879

About nancyleek

Nancy is a retired librarian who lives in Chico, California. She is the author of John Bidwell: The Adventurous Life of a California Pioneer.
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1 Response to July 25, 1841

  1. Pingback: The Fate of the Fraeb Party | goldfields

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