CONDOR TALES

The History and Genealogy Pages
"Colonel Nathaniel Ford's 1844 Wagon Train"

[Independence, Missouri to Oregon 1844]

Compiled by Sanford "Sandy" Wilbur
USED BOOK SALES - OVERLAND TRAILS, AMERICAN INDIANS, GENEALOGY, ETC.

James CLYMAN, well-known adventurer, came to Oregon in 1844, with a party that organized at Independence, Missouri in May 1844. Details of the trip are given in:

Clyman, J. and C. L. Camp. 1925. James Clyman: his diaries and reminiscences. California Historical Society Quarterly 4(2):307-360.

Below is a list of names gleaned from the journal, and a rough itinerary, but there is much more in the article, if you are interested. Many Western libraries have copies of this periodical. If your local library or college subscribes to the JSTOR online databases, the full run of the journal has been scanned there.

ITINERARY
This group started from Independence, Missouri, 14 May 1844, over what became the "usual" Oregon Trail route across Kansas and Nebraska to the Platte River near Fort Kearney. On 25 May they met as a group and chose Col. Nathaniel Ford as their leader. They reached the divide between the Kansas and Platte river watersheds 10 July; were in view of Scott's Bluff, Nebraska, on 28 July; crossed South Pass, Wyoming, 27 August; arrived at Soda Springs, Idaho 7 September; and reached the Snake River near Fort Hall on 10 September. They continued west along the Snake River, crossing to the north side and passing Fort Boise 22 September. They were near present-day Baker City, Oregon, on 27 September. They continued over the Blue Mountains to the Columbia River and followed it west, crossing the John Day River 6 October, and reaching the Willamette Valley near Willamette Falls.

PARTIES MET ON THE TRAIL
In addition to the names of people in the wagon train with Clyman, he mentions the following:

24 June 1844, in Kansas: The company of Cornelius GILLIAM had passed through that area two days previous. On 17 July, Clyman's group met up with this party [here spelled GILHAM], and on 20 July the two trains agreed to travel more or less together. At this point, their combined train had 96 teams and wagons.

27 June 1844: They passed the SUBLETT party of 20 men, 11 of whom were sick; a Mr. Marshall had just died and was buried there. 3 July: the SUBLETT group passed them; another death had occurred, a Mr. KETCHUM. Another KETCHUM, brother of the deceased, was also with this party. 7 July, another member of the Sublett party died, a Mr. BROWNING.

24 August 1844, Sweetwater River, Wyoming: they saw Capt. SHAW, the MORRISON Company, and Messrs. HARRIS, PERKINS and SCOTT. [The Editor notes that this probably included the family of Capt. Levi SCOTT, well known in Douglas County, Oregon, in later years.]

31 August 1844, future site of Fort Bridger, Wyoming: Antione ROBIDOUX, from Arkansas, was proprietor of the trading post there.

27 September 1844, near present-day Baker City, Oregon: they met William C. DEMENT, in the company of four Indians. The also met James WATERS from the Willamette Valley, who had come to meet his family, whom he expected to arrive in that year's immigration.

* * * * *

WAGON TRAIN ROSTER
This is not a complete list of those traveling with Clyman. He says that there were 92 men in the company. His journal makes it clear that there were a number of women and children, also, but none are identified by name.

ADAMS, T. M.
ALDERMAN, Isaac W. Settled first near Fort Vancouver; went to California, and was murdered at Fort Sutter in 1848.
BARNETT, J. M. died of "typhus fever" on the Sweetwater 26 August 1844
BLACK, W. L.
BLAKESLY [BLAKELY]
BOYD
CHRISMAN [CRISMAN, or CRISSMAN], Joel. From Virginia; died in Yamhill County, Oregon 1875.
CLARK, William
CLYMAN, James
CORDEL
CRISSMAN [CHRISMAN?], S.
DAVENPORT, Alf
DOTY [N. R. DOUGHERTY?]
EVANS
EVERHART, L.
FORD, Nathaniel. Lived in Polk County, Oregon, where he died 9 January 1870. Elected wagon master
GILBERT, Isaac N. Lived at Salem, Oregon
GILLESPIE
GOFF, David
GOFF, Marion
GOFF, Samuel
HARPER, James
HARRIS
HILLHOUSE, J.
HINMAN, Alanson. Left the party near present-day Baker City, Oregon; worked for the Whitmans at Walla Walla and later at The Dalles.
HOWARD
HUMPHREY, Norris
HUNT, James
JACKSON, John R. One of the first settlers around Puget Sound.
JACKSON, John H. P.
JOHNSON, Daniel
JOHNSON, James
LEE, Barton B.
McKINLEY, J.
McMAHAN
MORIN, L.
MULKEY, J. L.
NEAL, Alex
NEAL, Attey
NEAL, Calvin
NEAL, George
NEAL, J. [Robert?]
NEAL, Peter
OLAS [OWLESS], Ruel
OLCOTT, Egbert [aka "Texas Smith"], an Albany, New York banker on the run for theft
PACKWOODS [PACKWOOD], Samuel
PACKWOODS [PACKWOOD], William. Moved from Oregon to Puget Sound in 1847.
PERIN, M. R.
PERKEY, J. D.
PERKINS, Eli
PERKINS, Joel
PERKINS, Joel Jr.
PERKINS, John
PRIEST
ROBINSON, Benjamin M.
ROLIN [ROLANDS] - Note: editor suggested might be Levi L. ROWLAND, later Oregon Superintendent of Public Instruction.
SMITH, Noyes
SMITH, William
SNOOKS
STEPHENS
WALKER, K. [Robert?]
WALKER, Samuel
WARNBAUGH [WORNBAUGH, WARNSBOUGH, or WAMBOUGH] M. [M.] . Was in Oregon until April 1846, when he moved to California
WEER, William
WELCH, James
WILLIAMS, Poe
WILLIAMSON, Henry. First settled near Fort Vancouver, went to California ca 1849

Topic Indexes

HOME PAGE

Semi-Rough: A North County Journal

California Condor: Past, Present, Future

The History and Genealogy Pages

Politics and Religion / Saving Small Towns

Public Participation Stories / Wildlife and Conservation

Eloquence [Writing for Fun]

New and Used Books

Contact Me