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Fremont Expedition

Frémont's Fourth Expedition into the San Luis Valley

The ill-fated 1848-1849 expedition led by John C. Frémont into the San Juan Mountains of the San Luis Valley of southern Colorado is the subject of one of the Museum's permanent exhibits.

A group of 35 men followed Frémont and guide Bill Williams into the then little-known San Luis Valley with the purpose of locating a year-round railroad route through the central Rocky Mountains.

Caught by winter storms in the San Juan Mountains, the expedition members broke into smaller parties and lost ten members because of exposure, before being rescued in mid-January of 1849.

The story of their ordeal, objects left behind by the expedition members at their Christmas Camp (or Camp Hope), and alternate routes proposed by historians are covered in this exhibit.

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