This Day in History
Tomahawk Throwing Contest


On a day like today in the 1830’s...

After abandoning the old custom of fixed trading posts where trappers brought their packs of pelts, the fur companies held an annual rendezvous in early summer. Trade goods from St. Louis were exchanged for furs. Trappers, traders, and Indians feasted and celebrated together in what some observers described as a “bacchanal.” In this scene a tomahawk-throwing contest is under way.





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All illustrations by Mort Künstler. Text by Michael Aubrecht, Dee Brown, Henry Steele Commager, Rod Gragg, Mort Künstler, Edward Lengel, James McPherson, and James I. Robertson, Jr. - Copyright © 2001-2019. All Rights Reserved. No part of the contents of this web site may be reproduced or utilized in any form by any means without written consent of the artist.