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Trappers, Traders, & Explorers - Timeline
American Indians Trappers, Traders & Explorers Pioneers & Cowboys Mining & Railroad Statehood War to War Utah Today

EVENTS IN UTAH'S HISTORY

1776

Fathers Silvestre Velez de Escalante and Francisco Atanasio Dominguez seek a new route from New Mexico to California and explore Utah.

1821

Mexico wins independence from Spain and claims Utah.

Following the Mexican Revolution, traders from Spanish and Mexican territory barter actively in Utah.

1824

General William H. Ashley sends trappers to northern Utah and Jim Bridger discovers the Great Salt Lake.

1825

American trappers affiliated with William H. Ashley and led by Johnson Gardner and Peter Skene Ogden of the rival Hudson's Bay Company, a British outfit, met imperviously at Mountain Green on the Weber River.

William H. Ashley arranged for his men to meet at Henry's Fork of the Green River for what became the first annual rendezvous. The next three rendezvous were held in Utah--one in Cache Valley and the next two on the south end of Bear Lake.

1826

Jedediah Smith leads the first overland expedition to California.

1829-1848

The Old Spanish Trail which enters Utah about fifteen miles east of Monticello, and continues roughly northwesterly to about the town of Green River, crosses the Colorado River just northwest of Moab and eventually crosses desert and wash region until it reaches the Green River.

1830

On August 6 Joseph Smith organizes the "Church of Christ" the predecessor of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Fayette, New York.


1831

Ashley's final Utah rendezvous ensues in Cache Valley; the remaining ones were held in southwestern Wyoming and eastern Idaho until their discontinuance in 1840.


1832

Antoine Robidoux builds a trading post in the Uintah Basin.

 

1836

William Craig, Philip Thompson, and Previtt Sinclair built a fort at Brown's Hole and after news of the fall of the Alamo and the death of Davy Crockett reached the mountains, the owners renamed it Fort Davy Crockett. However, the mountain men usually referred to the place as "Fort Misery" because of the deplorable conditions.

 

1843

John C. Fremont and Kit Carson explore the Great Basin.

 

1844-1845

Miles Goodyear builds Fort Buenaventura.

 

1846

543 men enlist in the Mormon Battalion, to fight for the United States in the Mexican War, and eventually march the longest military march in history of 2000 miles.

 

1847

The Mormon High Council of Great Salt Lake City authorized James Brown to purchase Fort Buenaventura from Goodyear for $1,950. The fort, the outbuildings, and all of the animals except Goodyear's horses became Mormon property.

Jim Bridger meets the Mormon pioneers and discusses the merits of settling in the Salt Lake Valley, draws a map on the ground depicting the region with great accuracy, and conveys to Brigham Young his misgivings regarding the agricultural productivity of the Salt Lake area.


1848

Samuel J. Hensley discovers a route from Salt Lake City to the California Trail near the City of Rocks in Idaho, which came to be known as the Salt Lake Cutoff.

1849

In mid-June the first gold-rushers reach Salt Lake City to briefly rest, attain supplies, and rest their animals.

Mormon pioneers built "Fort Utah" on a Utah Valley stream that had generally been known as the Timpanogos.

The October LDS Conference directed the establishment of the city of "Provo," named after Etienne Provost.

1853

Fremont returns to Utah in a futile attempt to find a feasible transcontinental railroad route.

Captain John Gunnison and a surveying party traveled part of the Old Spanish Trail before turning north along the Sevier River.

In October, Indians kill Gunnison and a number of others.

1869

John Wesley Powell explores the Colorado River.

 

1871

John Wesley Powell names a butte, valley, and Green River crossing for Gunnison when he passes through the region.

1871-1873

Kanab serves as John Wesley Powell's field headquarters during his second expedition, which yielded several important maps and photographs of the Colorado Plateau.

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