Top 10 Recommended Books

Discussion in 'Muzzleloading and History in the Media' started by Walkingeagle, Apr 27, 2019.

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  1. Apr 27, 2019 #1

    Walkingeagle

    Walkingeagle

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    Everyone,
    If I may request, I am seeking advice as to what would be the 10 best books for reading on the mountain man era, including hunters, scouts, etc. I am interested in firearms, equipment, clothing, skills, cooking and cookware, essentially what was needed to survive, and thrive in the wilds of the time. This can include actual novels as well.
    Thanks in advance for your input.
    Walk
     
  2. Apr 28, 2019 #2

    Phil Coffins

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    “Journal of a Trapper” by Osborn Russell. Not real detailed on material but you’ll learn a ton on mountain men.
     
  3. Apr 28, 2019 #3

    dsayer

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    Not quite of the period (first published in 1882 I think), but The Still Hunter by Theodore S. Van Dyke is an excellent read on hunting deer from the ground. Said to have been one of Pres. Theodore Roosevelt's favorite books.
     
  4. Apr 28, 2019 #4

    Treestalker

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    Across the Wide Missouri, by Bernard DeVoto. It's supposed to be really good, I just recently picked up a copy at a yard sale for $1.50, haven't read it yet. Just glancing at it, it seems to be written in a vernacular of a bygone age, so it may be a bit tough to read.
     
  5. Apr 28, 2019 #5

    russellshaffer

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    Journal of a Trapper is available as a free download along with a bunch of others from the Library of Western Fur Trade.
    http://mtmen.org/mtman/mmarch.html There is enough reading here to last for years, I think.
     
  6. Apr 28, 2019 #6

    Eutycus

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    There was a movie by that name starring Clark Gable some years back. Is this the same story? In my opinion it was one of the better movies about Mountain Men.
     
  7. Apr 28, 2019 #7

    Treestalker

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    I don't know, but I bet it was based on the book, however Oilywood made the movie...
     
  8. Apr 28, 2019 #8

    Eutycus

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    Probably so, if you ever happen to stumble across the movie it aint bad. The subject matter is pretty good and it sure beats some of the sappy love stories Hollywood was famous for.
     
  9. Apr 28, 2019 #9

    Kansas Jake

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    My old copy of Across the Wide Missouri also includes a number of paintings from the period.

    A more modern book, but Lord Grizzly is a good read based on the Hugh Glass story help wet my bp interest many years ago.

    Any of the contemporary biographies of period mountain men are interesting.
     
  10. Apr 29, 2019 #10

    tenngun

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    Z Lenords, Washington Irving’s, Russell’s Fire arms traps and tools of the mt men, Jim Clymans journal, there was a good bio of Jedediah Smith written in the 1970s I forgot the author. Commerce of the prairies is about the time it not specifically about Mt men as is WhaToYah and the Taos Trail. Men to match my mountains written in the 1950s or 60s was good. At least some are on kindle. Others are in most libraries.
     
  11. Apr 30, 2019 #11

    Grenadier1758

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    One of the better books out there is "Firearms, Traps, & Tools of the Mountain Man" by Carl P Russell. Originally published in 1967, it has descriptions of all the above mentioned equipment.

    Worth looking for, but can be pricey are "The Book of Buckskinning" from Scurlock Publishing. There's 8 volumes in the series with the first two being better for basic equipment.

    The novels by Terry Johnston about the Mountain Men are great reading. Start with "One Eyed Dream" nd you will be searching for the rest of the novels in the series.
     
  12. Apr 30, 2019 #12

    Kansas Jake

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    Some libraries have the Book of Buckskinning books along with some of the others recommended. I would suggest you check for them at a library. You may find some you want to own and others you read or thumb through but decide aren't your cup of tea.
     
  13. Apr 30, 2019 #13

    Eutycus

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    Some libraries may not have these "pricey" books or titles to you liking on hand but it doesnt hurt to ask if they are participants in the ILL. I think it stands for Inter Library Loan or something like that. You can even request large print.
     
  14. May 1, 2019 #14

    FishDFly

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    "One of the better books out there is "Firearms, Traps, & Tools of the Mountain Man" by Carl P Russell. Originally published in 1967, it has descriptions of all the above mentioned equipment."

    A worth while book.
     
  15. May 1, 2019 #15

    tenngun

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    Take care with the novels, like Johnson’s. Carry the wind, bordelords, and one eyed dream are fun reads. And cover a lot of historic events, however it’s not a very historically accurate story. One trapper living on his own was at least very rare.
    There are some good novels and narrative such as Blevin’s Give my Heart to the Hawks, they do romanticize the history a bit. There good reads but novels.
    Good bios are avalible for Sublett, Bridger, Meek, Beckworth, Carson and the Bents.
    And of them all Meek and Beckworth are the most entertaining. They believed any good story could be made better by skillful retelling.
     
  16. May 1, 2019 #16

    tenngun

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    Men to match my mountains by Irving and Jed Smith by Maynard, had to look it up
     
  17. May 1, 2019 #17

    nagantino

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    Perhaps not quiet Mountain Man pure, but try Butchers Crossing by John Williams. It tells the story of an eastern guy who buys into a scheme to hunt buffalo in a remote mountain valley. Beautifully written story.
     
  18. May 1, 2019 #18

    Walkingeagle

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    I thank you all for the information. Lots of books to be on the watch for, and much appreciated.
    Thanks again.
    Walk
     
  19. May 1, 2019 #19

    Elkeater

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    Life in the Far West, George Frederick Ruxton. Historical novel.
     
  20. May 1, 2019 #20

    Rifleman1776

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    True. But an excellent source of unlimited reading on the subject is from Amazon/Kindle. The Kindle reader is not expensive and thousands of titles can be read free. Countless more can be bought for as little a 99 cents.
     
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