Crow Killer: The Saga of Liver-Eating Johnson by Raymond W. ThorpThe movie Jeremiah Johnson introduced millions to the legendary mountain man, John Johnson. The real Johnson was a far cry from the Redford version. Standing 6’2” in his stocking feet and weighing nearly 250 pounds, he was a mountain man among mountain men, one of the toughest customers on the western frontier. As the story goes, one morning in 1847, Johnson returned to his Rocky Mountain trapper’s cabin to find the remains of his murdered Indian wife and her unborn child. He vowed vengeance against an entire Indian tribe. Crow Killer tells of that one-man, decades-long war to avenge his beloved. Whether seen as a realistic glimpse of a long ago, fierce frontier world, or as a mythic retelling of the many tales spun around and by Johnson, Crow Killer is unforgettable.
The Legend of Jeremiah Johnson
John Liver Eating Johnston. Farmer, sailor, teamster, trapper, hunter, guide, scout, deputy, Union Private, trader, and more. A frontiersman born in New Jersey, sailing the seas then digging for gold in the Montana Territory and continuing to live a robust, adventurous life in the west dodging arrows, bullets, fists, weather, animals, until the frailty of old age came upon him. He was noted to be surly, extremely strong and a loner. But did you know his birth name was Garrison? What kind of man was he?
It takes him into a beautiful, awesome, often terrifying wilderness — a wilderness that is curiously full of people, many of them dead. Jeremiah achieves his own position in the wilderness. He loses track of time. He gets a wife, a squaw, and loses her too — slaughtered by Crow Indians. He makes a kind of spiritual contact with the mountains that surround him there is no making peace with them , though he lives in such intimacy with trouble that he no longer knows what trouble is.
The mountain man of the wild west was better known by his nickname, one he earned and then some. At the dawn of the Mexican-American war, he left home to enlist in the Navy. After striking an officer, whether on purpose or by accident, he fled the army and became a deserter. He was about six feet tall and weighed pounds with hardly any body fat. While out west in the Alder Gulch territory of Montana, Johnson met his future wife, who was a member of the Flathead Indian tribe. Together, they lived in a log cabin that Johnson built himself and his wife soon became pregnant. It seemed that finally, Johnson had a good life cut out for himself.