Joseph Robidoux at Roy's Branch
Joseph Robidoux, founder of St. Joseph, was the leader of a French-Canadian fur trading family which sent men out to trade with the Indians along the Missouri River and as far west as today's Wyoming, Colorado, and New Mexico. From his first trip up the Missouri River in 1799 at age 16 to his death in 1868, Robidoux witnessed many changes in this area. He was the first permanent settler in Blacksnake Hills and later encouraged other settlers to come to his newly established town of St. Joseph. Before he died he saw his town grow to a population of about 19,000 citizens.
The small creek which cuts through the bluffs and empties into the Missouri River near here is known as Roy's Branch. It was named for fur trader and trapper Jean Baptist Roy. Members of the French-Canadian Roy family had settled along the Mississippi River near St. Louis in the mid-1700s and were involved in the fur trade business along the Missouri River. Jean Baptist Roy was still trading in this area in the 1830s. It is not known at what point in time that the creek was named for Roy.
In the fall of 1826, fur trader Joseph Robidoux was granted permission by the U.S. Government to set up a small trading post at the mouth of Roy's Branch. Since the northwest corner of today's Missouri was the Platte Indian Territory, no settlers were allowed. However, Robidoux
Robidoux lived at this site from the fall of 1826 to the spring of 1827. However, the land was low and flooded in the spring when the river water rose due to melting snow. As a result, Robidoux decided the location at Roy's Branch was unsuitable. In the spring of 1827, he moved a mile down river to the mouth of Blacksnake Creek.
The river bottoms at this point are called French Bottoms since a number of French families, some in the employ of Joseph Robidoux, settled. here.
In the early 1800s, the fur trade was a very profitable business. Part of the instructions to Lewis and Clark from President Jefferson were to report on the types and numbers of fur bearing animals and their locations. They were also to find out if the Indians would trade in furs. The French-Canadians also contributed to the success of the Lewis and Clark Expedition. These men were used to travel on the Missouri River and helped pull, pole, row and sail the keel boat and two pirogues up the river. They were also familiar with landmarks, many of which had been named by Frenchmen, and the locations and customs of the various Indian tribes.
Erected by National Park Service, Missouri Lewis & Clark Bicentennial Commission, City of St. Joseph, and St. Joseph CVB.
Marker series. This marker is included in the Lewis & Clark Expedition marker series.
Location. 39° 46.674′ N, 94° 52.422′ W. Marker is in Saint Joseph, Missouri, in Buchanan County. Touch for map. Marker is along the riverfront trail, about 250 feet south of the Remington Nature Center. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1502 McArthur Drive, Saint Joseph MO 64505, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within one mile of this marker, measured as the crow flies. The Lewis and Clark Expedition (approx. ¼ mile away); The Men of the Corps of Discovery / The Lewis and Clark Expedition (approx. 0.3 miles away); A Path To Freedom (approx. 0.7 miles away); St. Joseph (approx. 0.7 miles away); Fort Smith (approx. 0.7 miles away); Pony Express (approx. 1.1 miles away); Joseph Robidoux (approx. 1.1 miles away); The California - Oregon Trail (approx. 1.1 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Saint Joseph.
Also see . . .
1. Lewis & Clark National Historic Trail. (Submitted on November 27, 2015, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
2. Lewis & Clark at National Geographic. (Submitted on November 27, 2015, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
3. Teaching With Documents: The Lewis & Clark Expedition. (Submitted on November 27, 2015, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
4. Lewis & Clark Trail Heritage Foundation. (Submitted on November 27, 2015, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
5. The Journals of the Lewis and Clark Expedition. (Submitted on November 27, 2015, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
Categories. • Exploration • Industry & Commerce • Settlements & Settlers • Waterways & Vessels •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on November 27, 2015, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania. This page has been viewed 204 times since then and 7 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on November 27, 2015, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.