WASHINGTON COUNTY HISTORICAL SOCIETY (Washington County, Utah)
(wagon train captain)
BIOGRAPHYJefferson Hunt was born January 20, 1803 in Bracken County, Kentucky.
Jefferson & Celia Hunt were baptized into the Mormon church on March 7, 1835. They migrated with the Mormons to Far West Missouri, Nauvoo Illinois, and on west. Hunt served with the Mormon Battalion and arrived back in Salt Lake in 1847.
Hunt led several parties of gold prospectors from Utah to California. On one of those trips in 1849 near Enterprise, part of the company decided to split off from Hunt's group, and follow their own route to California. That group became known as the Death Valley 49ers and their choice proved to be fatal to some of the party and troublesome for the rest. Those staying with Hunt made the journey without serious incident.
He briefly represented Iron County in the Utah Territorial Legislature in 1851. He was not a resident of Iron County, but he happened to pass through the county as elections were held, and he was chosen by the locals.
From 1851, he was sent to help form the Mormon colony at San Bernadino, California. He served in the California State Assembly from 1853 to 1857, representing Los Angeles County but soon being instrumental in the formation of San Bernadino County. He also served as a Brigadier General in the California State Militia.
In 1860, he founded the town of Huntsville, Utah. He served as a representative to the Utah Territorial Legislature in 1863, representing Weber County.
Hunt died May 11, 1879 in Oxford, Idaho at the age of 76.
WCHS-02319 Photo of the "Spanish Trail: Jefferson Hunt Monunent 1/2" sign
WCHS-02320 Photo of the "Short Cut: 118 Wagons Turned West Here 1849" monument
WCHS-02321 Photo of the "Spanish Trail: Traveled By Jefferson Hunt Party 1949" monument
WCHS-02322 Photo of the "Iron County Utah Centennial Circle - Jefferson Hunt" plaque
WCHS-02323 Photo of the trail continuing on beyond the "Jefferson Hunt" plaque
REFERENCESWikipedia article on Jefferson Hunt
Biography of Captain Charles Jefferson Hunt
Jefferson Hunt Family History Resource Page
Sons of Utah Pioneers article on Jefferson Hunt and the Death Valley 49ers
Freepages article about Jefferson Hunt
Names in Mojave Desert History - Captain Jefferson Hunt