Fur Trade Mystery Journal Found!

Journal of Ashley

For years a small 1826 journal was mistaken to be Robert Campbell’s diary. The journal was donated to the Campbell House Museum in St. Louis Missouri in an envelope marked “Campbell’s Diary” and it wasn’t until recently that an analysis of the handwriting revealed the the diary was not written by Campbell.

The question remains…who’s diary was this?

In comparing the writing in the journal to other fur trade documents there is considerable evidence that the owner was William H. Ashley. What a find!

A tangible piece of history, an actual item containing thoughts of William H. Ashley, one of the famous co-owners of the Rocky Mountain Fur Trade Co.

Ashley’s diary contains numerous ledgers and drawings of rivers and topographical details.
For more information and the full story on the discovery of this item check out Vol. 8 of the Rocky Mountain Fur Trade Journal which has a page by page transcript of the diary!
Go back in time as you follow Ashley’s travels.  This little book is quite a discovery for the fur trade community, and leaves the question…what other valuable fur trade items are out there waiting to be found.