Historical Society Treks Across Emery County with the John C. Fremont Expedition


Wade Allinson

The Emery County Historical Society gathered together at the Museum of the San Rafael on Thursday to listen and learn as local historian and explorer Wade Allinson recounted John C. Fremont’s fifth and final western expedition that took him through Emery County.

The evening began with Kay Jensen on guitar and his daughter Aretha on violin as Kay sang his rendition of “Blue Shadows on the Trail”. Also at the event, Craig Anderson donated one of his paintings to the historical society.

The gathered crowd listened as Allinson spoke of John C. Fremont’s fifth and final western expedition to map a railroad route to the west coast in 1853. Fremont commissioned artist and daguerreotypist Solomon Carvalho who had recently begun practicing the new art of daguerreotyping.

Allinson spoke of the 2,400 mile, five-month journey the group made from New York to Parowan, Utah, which included a disastrous attempt to cross the Rocky Mountains in the deep freeze of winter. They traveled by stagecoach, steamer, pony, mule and by foot. The group encountered freezing conditions, near starvation and tragedy before they made it safely to Parowan.

On April 26 at noon, the Emery County Historical Society will dedicate an interpretative panel/kiosk for the Wild Horse Butte Historical Society Project. The project is sponsored by the Emery County Historical Society, the National Jewish Historical Preservation Society and Utah States Parks and Recreation. Those interested may meet at the Ferron Park on Saturday at 9:30 a.m. to commence in the journey to Goblin Valley. The Begay family will make refreshments and Navajo tacos for the event.

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