WESTERN HISTORY

Wednesday, our guest is David Bigler, a “revisionist historian” of the 19th century Utah and Mormon story. For nearly 50 years, Bigler has been a prolific writer and iconoclast, bringing insight to controversial events like the Mountain Meadows Massacre and the Utah War. David Bigler and editor Will Bagley join Doug to talk about what we learn from clear-eyed history and an openness to “revision” as new sources are uncovered. They’ll also tell us a few good stories from Utah’s past.

The Rocky Mountains have always posed a forbidding obstacle for travelers, but there’s one place where "God ran out of mountains," and passage is relatively easy.  For generations, Indians, fur traders, missionaries, and explorers moved through South Pass, a treeless valley in southwestern Wyoming. It’s a place rich with history and extraordinary tales, and it's the focus of historian Will Bagley's latest book. He joins us to explain how South Pass figured in the development of the American West. (Rebroadcast)

Friday on RadioWest the historian Will Bagley is with us to talk about his epic quest to chronicle the westward migration of American settlers. Bagley's book tells the story of the Overland Trails that brought more than half a million Americans to the far West of Oregon and California. It's the story of families and fortune hunters and the effect that all of it had the native people who for centuries had already been calling the West home. (Rebroadcast)