Hugh Glass

“Hugh Glass, Grizzly Survivor” is a new biography written by Mitchell author (and professor emeritus of history at Dakota Wesleyan University) James D. McLaird. Little is known about fur trapper Hugh Glass’s early years, but his encounter with a bear in northwestern South Dakota launched a legend that endures  today. James McLaird joins Dakota Midday host Lori Walsh to talk about Glass, grizzlies, and the intersection between western lore and history. 

"The Revenant" made news this past Sunday with Oscar wins in cinematography and a best actor win for star Leonardo DiCapprio. The character DiCapprio portrays in the film is mountain man Hugh Glass, who famously survived a grizzly bear mauling and then crawled 200 grueling South Dakota miles.

Harry Thompson, director of the Center for Western Studies at Augustana University, talks about the story of Hugh Glass and Fred Manfred. Manfred wrote the iconic book “Lord Grizzly.”

Hugh Glass was a member of a fur trading party in the summer of 1823 when he was attacked by a grizzly bear along the shores of the Grand River, south of present day Lemmon. He was badly wounded and abandoned by two members of the expedition left to look after him. Alone with a broken leg and open wounds, Glass crawled some 200 miles to Fort Kiowa.