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Russell Farnham

Russell FarnhamSome people accomplish little and are remembered for their minor achievements throughout history.  Others accomplish much and are forgotten.  Russell Farnham accomplished a lot and is mostly forgotten.
Russell Farnham was a partner of George Davenport, and also a representative of the American Fur Company.  Along with Mr. Davenport, he founded a town called Stephenson.  He did not found Farnhamsburg, but the town was named after him.  Stephenson and Farnhamsburg were later combined, and became Rock Island, Illinois.
Russell Farnham also founded the town of Muscatine, Iowa.
He continued to build a finiancial empire based on fur trading in areas that are now in Iowa or Illinois, but in 1832 he suddenly died from cholera.
His real claim to fame, however, was that he walked halfway across the world.  This was a few years prior to his partnership with Col. Davenport.  In 1814 he went from Fort Astoria (now Astoria, Oregon) to Saint Petersburg, Russia.  He probably took a boat from Astoria to Kamchatka, although there is at least one report that he crossed the Bering Straits on ice sheets, rather than by boat.  He became so hungry along the way that he had to eat part of his boots to survive.  Either way, after he got into Russia, he had over six thousand miles to walk to get to St. Petersburg.
But his place in history is almost forgotten.
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