ALL the News about
Mormons, Mormonism
and the LDS Church
Mormon News: All the News about Mormons, Mormonism and the LDS Church
Posted 24 Jul 2001   For week ended July 06, 2001
Most Recent Week
Front Page
Local News
Arts & Entertainment
·New Products
·New Websites
·Mormon Stock Index
Letters to Editor
Continuing Coverage of:
Boston Temple
School Prayer
Julie on MTV
Robert Elmer Kleasen
About Mormon News
News by E-Mail
Weekly Summary
Submitting News
Submitting Press Releases
Volunteer Positions
Bad Link?

News about Mormons, Mormonism,
and the LDS Church

Sent on Mormon-News: 03Jul01

By Kent Larsen

Fort That Sheltered Martin Handcart Company Found

CASPER, WYOMING -- An archaeological project initiated by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has discovered Seminoe Fort, a trading post on the Mormon and Oregon Trails where members of the ill-fated Martin Handcart Company sought shelter during a blizzard in 1856. The Church started the project, which is also sponsored by the Wyoming Department of State Parks and Cultural Resources, the University of Wyoming and the National Park Service, to include the fort as part of its Martin's Cove Visitor's Center.

Researchers knew the general location of the fort, established about 1852 by fur trader Charles "Seminoe" Lajuenesse, but the exact location wasn't known. "We knew generally out on that hay field where the structure was, but we had no real idea," Assistant State Archaeologist Danny Walker said. "There's an 1857 plat map that exists and gives the location out on that terrace we were on, but the exact location was unknown. For 140 years no one's known where it was." So far researchers have located three of at least six cabins that are thought to be part of the fort. The Church has expressed interest in reconstructing the buildings as accurately as possible.

For Mormons, the fort's role was as a shelter to the members of the Edward Martin Handcart company. After starting late in the season, the company got stuck when an early blizzard hit Wyoming. After rescuers from Salt Lake City reached them, the combined group stayed in the fort for two days on November 4, 1856. They then moved over to Martin's Cove, where they stayed another four or five days before traveling on to Utah.

The fort burned down the following year, and its exact location was lost. Researchers started working at the site earlier this year, and discovered the first remnants of the fort in May. But digging at the site has now stopped, since Funding ran out on Saturday. Walker hopes that additional funds can be raised quickly so that the excavation can continue.


Historic Oregon Trail fort unearthed
San Diego CA Union-Tribune (AP) 1Jul01 N6
Associated Press


[an error occurred while processing this directive]

Copyright 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001 Kent Larsen · Privacy Information