Project Principals

James C. Auld, Project Director, is an author and independent scholar of early nineteenth-century Western American fur trade history. He has researched and lectured on the Rocky Mountain fur trade, especially Jedediah Smith's early years in Ohio and Illinois and the Pacific Northwest Expedition of 1828. Auld's article, "The Legend of Jedediah Smith: Fact, Fantasy, and Opinion", appeared in Volume 2 (2008) of The Rocky Mountain Fur Trade Journal.Mr. Auld also co-wrote the production scripts.

Kathleen Barlow, PhD is professor and chair of the Department of Anthropology and Museum Studies and program faculty in American Indian Studies at Central Washington University. Dr. Barlow's special interests include studies in gender, symbolism, art and aesthetics, material culture and regional ethnography. She has been a board member of the Council for Museum Anthropology and a member of the Editorial Board for American Anthropologist. Dr. Barlow advises the project on content and perspectives of American Indian women and family.

Jerry Enzler is the founding director of the National Mississippi River Museum & Aquarium and National River Center in Dubuque, Iowa. He has created more than forty museum exhibits and has served as project director and leader for numerous humanities-funded projects, exhibits, symposiums and programs. Enzler is completing a full-length biography of mountaineer Jim Bridger and his life in the Rocky Mountain West. He has taught American History at Clarke University, is a frequent speaker at national forums and has appeared on The History Channel, PBS, HGTV, BBC, Austria radio, and other media. Mr. Enzler co-wrote the production script.

W. Otis Halfmoon is a Nez Perce elder and American Indian scholar who currently serves the National Park Service as Tribal Liaison for the National Trails-Intermountain Region. Mr. Halfmoon has worked as an interpreter, park historian, unit administrator and tribal liaison officer with indigenous peoples across the West. He documents and preserves his nation's history and culture through oral histories and is a respected expert on the Nez Perce and Chief Joseph. Mr. Halfmoon advises on content and perspective of the Nez Perce experience.

Jim Hardee is the author of Pierre's Hole: The Fur Trade History of Teton Valley and Obstinate Hope: The Western Expeditions of Nathaniel J. Wyeth. Hardee has served as director of the Fur Trade Research Center since 1998. He is the editor of The Rocky Mountain Fur Trade Journal and is a frequent contributor to fur trade publications. Hardee brings additional historical expertise to the project through his position as the former Museum Factor for the American Mountain Men. He is a well-known speaker on fur trade topics and has served as historical consultant for a fur trade program aired on The History Channel. Mr. Hardee also co-wrote the production script.

Willie LeClair, Eastern Shoshone Storyteller, Lecturer and Presenter, was born in Fort Washakie to a Shoshone Indian rancher and a white mother. Drawn back to the Wind River Reservation in search of his roots through traditional dance, LeClair began to study with Arapaho and Shoshone tribal leaders to learn how to follow the Red Road, or the spiritual path of his ancestors. He has danced the Sun Dance and completed six vision quests, the holiest of American Indian ceremonies. LeClair now serves as an educator and bridge between cultures, giving lectures around the nation on such topics as American Indian awareness, spirituality, language and traditions, often accompanied by traditional dance. Mr. LeClair advises on content and perspectives of the Shoshone and is a cast member in the production.

Charles Schroeck is an educational consultant to school districts and various education initiatives in areas related to project design/development, corporate communications and relationship management. Mr. Schroeck served the Chicago Public Schools for over 35 years as a teacher and librarian, writer/editor and district administrator. Mr. Schroeck is the author of numerous print and multimedia educational resources for students, teachers and parents and the manager of various event and stage productions. Mr. Schroeck co-wrote the script, coordinated publicity efforts and developed the online educational outreach.