In life, Hugh Glass became a mountain man. In history, Hugh Glass evolved into a legend of the Rocky Mountain fur trade. In Hollywood’s film, The Revenant, Hugh Glass emerged as a larger-than-life character of the American West. As such, Glass’s epic tale of survival has rendered him one of America’s most indomitable mountain men for nearly two-hundred years.
While hunting near the headwaters of South Dakota’s Grand River to supply the 1823 Ashley fur trapping party with food, Glass encountered a sow grizzly bear and her two cubs. The enraged bear charged and severely mauled the mountain man. Believing Glass only had a few hours or a day left to live, Major Henry, leader of the Grand River party, requested two volunteers to stay with Glass until he died.
Apparently, Glass’s indomitable spirit kept him alive longer than his comrades were willing to wait. Fearing for their own lives, Glass’s companions left him for dead without his gun and other necessities. Vowing to exact revenge on the heartless deserters, Jim Bridger and John Fitzgerald, Glass mustered up the raw courage he needed to doggedly crawl more than 200 miles to safety at Fort Kiowa.
After recovering from his wounds, Glass tracked down Jim Bridger. Realizing that Bridger was just a kid, Glass decided to forgive him. Discovering that Fitzgerald had joined the Army, Glass was compelled to give up his pact for revenge. Glass returned to the adventurous and dangerous life of a trapper for the next decade. While trapping along the Yellowstone River in 1833, Glass and two of his companions were killed by the Arickara.
The grizzly bear mount in this diorama represents the largest size that sow grizzly bears ever achieve in a lifetime.
The Museum of the Mountain Man would like to thank all the donors and granting foundations, whose generosity made this diorama possible.
For more information on Hugh Glass check out our website http://www.hughglass.org