On this day in 1844 John Charles Fremont, an American map maker, arrived at the Great Salt Lake in what would later become Utah. It’s not that John Fremont actually discovered what was once a sea, but the fact that during this expedition Fremont’s maps would define what became known as the Great Basin, of which the Great Salt Lake was a part. Although John Fremont never had much to do with Ohio in any way, he was recognized by Rutherford B. Hayes as a political and personal force and it was at Hayes suggestion that the little community where Hayes happened to be practicing law, suggested that the community be named after John C. Fremont, which it did. Today we know that sleepy town along the Sandusky River where people flock when the walleye are running is named after John C. Fremont, the map who began mapping the Great Salk Lake on this day. Oh yes, he also captured a little town named Santa Barbara during the Mexican-American War in 1846. This brought the Mexican Territory of California under control of the United States of America.
Three years later in 1849, young Rutherford B. Hayes, living back in Ohio along the Sandusky River recognized a good thing when he saw it. He lived in a village without a name, and when gold was discovered in California not far from where John Fremont was stationed, Rutherford suggested the little village along the Sandusky River where he had been practicing law for the last several years, be named after the famous mapmaker and soldier John C. Fremont.