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History of John C. Freemont, Utah
Taken from the Utah History Encyclopedia (Links Added)
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During the next twelve years, Frémont led five expeditions into the West. On the first, he surveyed the Platte "up to the head of the Sweetwater"; on the second, of fourteen months duration, he made a circuit of the entire West, launching his India-rubber boat on the Great Salt Lake on the outbound trip and examining Utah Lake on the return. The third expedition took him across the Salt Lake Desert and also involved him in the struggle to wrest California from Mexico and eventually in a court-martial trial which ended his government-sponsored explorations. The fourth, a winter expedition designed to ascertain the feasibility of a central railroad route, became stranded in the snows of the rugged San Juan Mountains of Colorado. The fifth and final expedition, which also had a railroad objective, was saved from disaster by the Mormons of Parowan.

For a time, Frémont made his home in California, but he was unable to exploit successfully the rich gold-bearing veins on his large estate of Las Mariposas. California became a state in 1850, and he served briefly as one of its United States senators. In 1856 he was the Republican Party's first candidate for president, but lost to Democrat James Buchanan. Early in the Civil War, President Abraham Lincoln gave him command of the Union Army's Western Department, only to remove him one hundred days later when Frémont foolishly ordered property held by Missouri rebels confiscated and their slaves freed.


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