William bent

William Bent

  • William Bent was born in St. Loius, Missouri

    William Bent was born in St. Loius, Missouri
    William BentBorn in St. Louis in 1809, one of four sons of a Missouri Supreme Court Justice, William Bent followed his older brother, Charles, into the fur-trading business. William was trapping along the upper Arkansas river by age fifteen.
  • Traveled Santa Fe Trail with his brother Charles

    Traveled Santa Fe Trail with his brother Charles
    He was 15 years old on his first trip.He helped his brother take a wagon train of trade goods down the Santa Fe Trail.
  • Ceran St. Vrain

    Ceran St. Vrain
    Ceran St. Vrain was a partner with the Bents and formed a trading company that bought and sold across the southwest -- Mexican blankets, New Mexico sheep, buffalo robes from the Plains, pelts from the Rocky Mountains, horses, mules and all manner of manufactured goods.
  • Bent's Fort

    Bent's Fort
    William Bent constructed in 1833 and where he served as field manager of the company's far-flung operations. Bent's Fort, was a massive adobe outpost on the north bank of the Arkansas River in present-day Colorado
  • Married Owl Woman

    Married Owl Woman
    In 1835 he married the Cheyenne Owl Woman, with whom he raised four children until her death in 1847. His two subsequent marriages were also to Indian women.
  • Mexican American War

    Mexican American War
    Bent's trade in government supplies gave him a quasi-official role within the region. In 1846, at the outbreak of the Mexican War, it was natural that Bent would be called on to guide General Phil Kearney's troops along the Santa Fe Trail into New Mexico.
  • Bent's Fort Blew Up

    Bent's Fort Blew Up
    it was perhaps Bent's assumption that the government would pay him back for all his services that caused him to blow up Bent's Fort rather than sell it to the army at what he considered an insultingly low price.
  • New Bent 's Fort constructed

    New Bent 's Fort constructed
    In 1857, Bent constructed a new outpost thirty-eight miles downstream from his old fort, gathered a group of settlers and created the first permanent American colony in Colorado.
  • Pikes Peak Gold Rush

    Pikes Peak Gold Rush
    In 1859, the Pikes Peak gold rush brought a flood of Americans into the region, and Bent suddenly found himself cutoff from the middle ground on which he had operated for so long. As tensions rose between the expanding white community and the embattled Cheyenne, Bent strove mightily, both as an Indian agent for a brief time and as a private citizen, to maintain a measure of peace and mutual toleration. In the end, however, all his efforts failed.
  • Sand Creek Massacre

    Sand Creek Massacre
    On November 29, 1864, Colonel John Chivington marched toward the Cheyenne's Sand Creek reservation, determined to destroy the Indians encamped there, a band led by the peace chief Black Kettle. Chivington posted a guard on William Bent to prevent him from warning the Cheyenne leader, and he forced Bent's son, Robert, to guide him to the site. There he and his volunteers slaughtered more than two hundred men, women and children, taking scalps and other grisly trophies which they later exhibited t
  • Bent's Death

    Bent's Death
    The Sand Creek Massacre turned William Bent's world upside down. Not only had his son Robert been made an unwilling accessory to the atrocity, Bent's other three children, Charles, Julia, and George, had been living in Black Kettle's encampment at the time of the attack. William Bent, his heart broken, soon moved to Westport, Kansas, where he died in 1869 of pneumonia.