Jim Beckwourth was an African American who played a major role in the early exploration and settlement of the American West. Although there were people of many races and nationalities on the frontier, Beckwourth was the only African American who recorded his life story, and his adventures took him from the everglades of Florida to the Pacific Ocean and from southern Canada to northern Mexico.
African Americans in the West were far more than cowboys and soldiers. African American men and women worked in every field. One of the most famous worked delivering the mail in Cascade, Montana. She was Mary Fields.