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MARKER DATABASE
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Caldwell in Canyon County, Idaho — The American West (Mountains)
 

Idaho's First Heroine - Madame Marie Dorion

 
 
Idaho's First Heroine - Madame Marie Dorion Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, May 4, 2018
1. Idaho's First Heroine - Madame Marie Dorion Marker
Inscription. Madame Marie Dorion passed through Caldwell area in 1811 as the only female traveler in the Wilson Price Hunt Party on what would become a portion of the Oregon Trail through Southern Idaho. She would return to the area with her husband, Pierre Dorion, Jr. and the Reed Trapping Party as a member of the Pacific Fur Company in the fall of 1813. While working at a secondary camp near Caldwell in January 1814, she was advised by a friendly Indian that hostile Indians were nearby, John Reed remained at this camp while Madame Marie Dorion gathered her two small children and when in search of her husband with a warning of impending danger.
Upon reaching the remote trapping camp, Marie found a nearly dead Giles LeClerc. From him she learned her warning arrived too late to save the group. This resulted in her becoming the first known widow of a European spouse in the area destined to become Idaho. The Dorion Woman was the name first used by historian Washington Irving to describe this heroine for many years. When LeClerc died the Dorion Woman returned to the Caldwell camp where she discovered Reed and his men dead, leaving her and her children as the only survivors.
Until her rescue in April near present day Hilgard, Oregon, Marie Dorion's determination to save her children lead her on a 200-mile flight across the Blue Mountains of
Idaho's First Heroine - Madame Marie Dorion Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, May 4, 2018
2. Idaho's First Heroine - Madame Marie Dorion Marker
Oregon in the dead of winter. Rescue came days after she spied a campfire in the distance. She hid her children until she ascertained the presence of friendly Walla Walla Indians. These rescuers were able to locate her children by following her route observing she crawled across the snow and ice in her desperate attempt to save her children's lives. Her survival tale, under indescribable odds remains the greatest example of a woman's courage and perseverance recorded in annals of western American history.
 
Erected 2010 by anyon County Historical Society, Our Memories Indian Creek Museum, E Clampus Vitus, Snake River Chapter No. 1811.
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the E Clampus Vitus marker series.
 
Location. 43° 39.804′ N, 116° 41.004′ W. Marker is in Caldwell, Idaho, in Canyon County. Marker is on Main Street near Avenue, on the left when traveling east. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1122 Main Street, Caldwell ID 83605, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 4 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. A.K. Steunenberg / Frank Steunenberg (approx. 0.3 miles away); Caldwell Train Depot (approx. 0.4 miles away); The College of Idaho
Idaho's First Heroine - Madame Marie Dorion Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, May 4, 2018
3. Idaho's First Heroine - Madame Marie Dorion Marker
(approx. 0.6 miles away); Emigrant Crossing (approx. 1.7 miles away); Peaceful Trading Turns Hostile (approx. 3.8 miles away); Hostility Erupts Into Violence (approx. 3.8 miles away); To the Memory of the Pioneers (approx. 3.8 miles away); Violence is Avenged (approx. 3.8 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Caldwell.
 
More about this marker. The marker is on the left side of the Our Memories Indian Creek Museum building.
 
Categories. HeroesNative AmericansWomen
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 25, 2018. This page originally submitted on June 25, 2018, by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California. This page has been viewed 37 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on June 25, 2018, by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California.
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