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  Trading Posts were one of the cornerstones that drove the fur trade and subsequent exploration of North America.  Local Indian tribes were eager to acquire metal goods, knives, axes, pots and pans, and the such, initiated trade with the fishermen. Their chief product to trade was furs, which the fishermen eagerly bought back to France and England.            

  Once the Westward Expansion began, much needed materials were required to survive the wilderness. Trading Post's along the way was a very important part of the American West.

                                                                                          jim bridger
                                                                                                                Jim Bridger's Trading Post, Nebraska

   John Sutter was a Swiss immigrant who received a land grant in the Sacramento Valley from the Mexican government. He used the land to create a supply fort, "Sutter's Fort," for the expected immigrants from the East. He never realized that in 1848, gold was discovered just a few short miles from the fort on the American River by James Marshall. John Sutter also created a flourishing agricultural empire. This was California's earliest settlement and the first non- Indian settlement.

          JIM BRIDGER

   James Bridger was one of the greatest frontiersmen of Utah and the American West. During his lifetime he was a hunter, trapper, trader, Indian fighter and guide and one of only a few trappers to remain in the Rocky Mountains. His first trading post was on the plains of Nebraska. He provided meat and supplies to various travelers, especially the Mormons on their journey to their new home on the Great Salt Lake, Utah.