Bridger, James (1804–1881), a United States frontiersman. Bridger was born in Richmond, Virginia, but as a child moved with his family to St. Louis, Missouri. He became a fur trapper and trader, making frequent expeditions in the area between New Mexico and Canada from the Missouri River west to Idaho and Utah.
Bridger explored the previously unknown Great Salt Lake region (1824). In 1843 he established Fort Bridger in southwestern Wyoming as a way station on the Oregon Trail. He later became a guide for many western expeditions, including Albert Sidney Johnston's expedition against the Mormons in Utah (1858–60). Bridger assisted in surveys for the Union Pacific Railroad before he retired as a scout in 1868.