South Pass, discovered in 1824 by mountain men, Thomas Fitzpatrick and Jedidiah Smith
Thomas Fitzpatrick, Jim
Bridger, Jedidiah Smith, and Etienne Provost (Provo, Utah named in
his honor), discover South Pass through the Rocky Mountains.
This low-lying saddle of alluvial benchland that surmounted
the continental divide would prove to be an essential pathway
through the mountains for hundreds of thousands of settlers on the
Oregon Trail. It also made it possible for Fitzpatrick to
blaze that trail with the first settlers, including Marcus and
Narcissa Whitman, in 1836.
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Until this time, beaver men
transting the continental divide went over Teton Pass, to the north
- then made their winter camp near the present day site of Ogden