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Food & Provisions of the Mountain Men (A Guide to Authentic Provisions of Fur Trappers, Traders and Explorers in the Early American West) Paperback – January 1, 2008
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From the Author
When it comes to authenticity at a rendezvous re-enactment or historical encampment, often one of the least authentic elements is at mess, or mealtime. A lot of modern and convenience food not just creeps in, it roars in -- in cellophane bags, aluminum cans, and ice chests.
This book is meant to be a guide to historically accurate food and provisions. The items have been gleaned from trappers' and explorers' journals, and diaries of western travellers, as well as trading post inventory records and lists of provisions for the annual fur-trapper rendezvous in the 1820s and 1830s.
The emphasis is on food and provisions in use up to 1840, the generally accepted cutoff date for the Fur Trade Era, that being the last year the trappers held a formal rendezvous. Some food items lie on the cusp because insufficient information is available, but their historical authenticity may be deduced.
Use this book as a reference to identify which items in your rendezvous larder are historically authentic or, as we say, "period correct."
As a further historical note, the April 3 publication date pays homage to William H. Ashley, who along with Andrew Henry founded the Rocky Mountain Fur Company. On April 3, 1822, Ashley left St. Louis, Missouri, leading the first of several trapping expeditions up the Missouri River. In 1825, he led a pack train carrying provisions and trade goods to the Rocky Mountains, thus initiating the annual rendezvous that we continue to reenact today.
Good eatin' and keep yer flour dry. Wagh!
--Larry "Friar" Edwards
About the Author
Larry M. "Friar" Edwards is a founding member of the Corps of Rediscovery, a group of dedicated living history re-enactors specializing in the time period of 1740 to 1840 in the history of North America.
Edwards has been an outdoorsman most of his life. He got his start in the Juanita Woods and the Cascade and Olympic mountains of Washington state.
He currently lives in San Diego, California, and spends as much time as possible in the region's Laguna Mountains.
Dressed in hand-sewn buckskins and playing fiddle, banjo, and guitar, Friar and his brigade partners Chuck "Strummer" Preble (author of The Rendezvous Primer) Carl "Broken Hand" Costantino, and Mike "Hat Man" Robinson make presentations at historical encampments, parks, schools, and museums.Friar, Strummer, and Hat Man, as "Heritage," produced their music on a CD: The Musical History Tour: Songs and Dance Tunes of the Early American Frontier.
Their blend of live music, storytelling, and realia provides an entertaining way to learn about this fascinating period in our nation's history: French & Indian War, Lewis & Clark Expedition, and the Fur Trade era.
Learn more at: larryedwards.com/mtnmen/