Oregon-California Trails Association (OCTA) 2023 convention in Gering, Nebraska – July 23-29, 2023
The French Presence on the Oregon-California Trails
The history of the French, French Canadians, and other French-speaking people in the American Southwest spans over 400 years. Over time, a network of communication routes (the “trails”) crisscrossed the land. We will highlight the magnitude of the French presence along the Oregon-California Trails, remembering trappers and traders of French origin such as Bordeaux, Cabanné, Chalifoux, Fontenelle, Julien, Lafargue, Laforest, LeClerc, Legutre, Leroux, Mallet, Nolan, Pratte, Provost, St. Germain, St. Vrain, Robidoux, and others, as well as many related place names.
Denver, weekend of April 9 and 10, 2022
Three lectures about The French in New Mexico, as part of Tesoro’s 2021-2022 Historic Lecture Series. Tesoro’s Lecture Series feature renowned scholars, historians, and authors in the field of 19th Century American Western History.
November 6, 2021 at 2pm
Hosted by the Taos County Historical Society
Kit Carson Electric Coop Boardroom
118 Cruz Alta Rd. Taos.
“New Mexico: The French Presence since the 1500s”
With special focus on Taos and Northern New Mexico
by François-Marie Patorni
Through stories woven in the flow of time, we will focus on the presence of the French-speaking people around Taos and Northern New Mexico. Many French and French-Canadian fur trappers and traders lived in or operated from Taos. After the fur trade days and the events surrounding the American annexation, the Taos Rebellion, and the Civil War, Taos remained the home of the French families already established there, and new entrepreneurs came to work or do business.
We will meet early explorers, trappers and traders, Catholic priests, military men, entrepreneurs, and others. Because of their large number, we will focus on a few notable or unusual people, and tell lesser-known stories.