Fanning the Embers, ?
1971, Range Rider Reps, Miles City, Montana
Gazing through the window next to my desk, I can see the bleak lines of the winter-stripped branches of a tall, gnarled cottonwood. It stands in the pale December sun, patient and waiting.
The old cottonwood has been there since first planted as a seedling from the banks of the muddy Yellowstone. It is one of the many bordering the parade ground of old Fort Keogh.
Club of Southeastern Montana
January 4, 1931 -- Monday: Memories raced back to periods of 50 and 60 years ago in the minds of the pioneers who were the guests of the Kiwanis club on Monday evening at the first annual banquet of the 'Half Century Club of Southeastern Montana' at the Miles City Club.
The magnitude of the loss suffered by Gen. George A. Custer and his men awoke the whole nation to the fact that a great and fertile portion of North America was under another sovereignty. The allied tribes had won their greatest victory. It was also their greatest defeat. The army was ordered to occupy the great Yellowstone Valley. Ft. Keogh was established [More...]
of the Miles City Post Office
The first post office located in the community was established Dec. 27, 1876, at Fort Keogh with the appointment of Gen. Nelson A. Miles as Postmaster. The office was first known as Tongue River until Jan. 4, 1878, when the name was officially changed to Fort Keogh.
of the Range Riders
The open range, the picturesque cowboy and pioneer conditions were a thing of the past by 1938, but the glamour of life on the range remained with the riders. There was a need to perpetuate these memories and to honor the men who rode the range.
Early Day Miles City
I have many childhood recollections of incidents and people I heard my elders tell
about. Miles City, at the time within my memory, then had a population of about three thousand people and thirty-one saloons, supported by a substantial garrison at Fort Keogh, the cowboys and the local townsmen.
The main street resembled the present-day Tombstone, Arizona with
- The Cow Town
Miles City has often been spoken of as being in the center of a circle, 150 miles in diameter, of the richest natural grassland in the world and while that's taking in quite a lot of territory, it is no exaggeration. Nowhere else can be found grass that is rich and nourishing from the time it starts growing in the spring through every stage of its growth and on into maturity.
City's First Roundup
During the late spring of 1913, through a program inaugurated by A. B. Buchanan, secretary of the Chamber of Commerce, with the memory of tremendous success that characterized the entertainment provided for the 1909 annual convention of the Montana Association of Elks. "the Miles City Roundup is to be given by the Custer Amusement Enterprise
"Roll out!" In the dim light of approaching dawn we faintly see the scattered tarp beds from which men begin sleepily emerging. Soon the camp is a "live outfit." In the
lantern-lighted roundup tent the cook is tossing biscuits while keeping an alert eye on sizzling steak.
In 1912 the Miles City Chamber of Commerce decided it would be a good idea to put on a Wild West celebration, complete with cowboys, cowgirls, Indians, bronc riding, calf roping, bull dogging, trick roping, Roman standing races, bands and floats. The show was to be fashioned after the first of its kind which was held in Cheyenne, Wyoming.
Experiences in the Army
The first familiar face that I saw after my assignment to the 6th Cavalry was that of 1st Sgt. W. E. Drennen of our Headquarter Troop. He had been a trumpeter with the D Troop stationed at Ft. Keogh during '03 to '06.
I recognized him immediately. One day, months later, in France, I saw another familiar face. It was George Snell, a lieutenant, in charge of a truck delivery
The original home of the XIT was at
Dalhart, Tex. It was owned by the Capitol Land and Cattle Co. In Montana the
headquarters were on Cedar Creek near Fallon. At one time it was the largest
cattle outfit in the United States, and the company's holdings covered ten
counties in the Texas panhandle. It was given this land for building the
capitol at Austin, Tex. [More...]
At this writing there are very few people left that know about a range roundup, so I will try to put in a word of explanation. The average outfit used from 10 to 15 men, depending on the size and the territory they worked. The last outfit my brother worked with was the LU Bar, owned by L. W. Stacey of Miles City, and the range was from the Porcupine in
Weather Statistics in Montana
The coldest January on record was at Fort Keogh in 1888 when on January 13 temperature dropped to the all time low of 65 below. Fort Keogh records were kept from 1878 until 1893 and the weather bureau here furnished records to complete the following chart from 1891 to
1943. Days in the first 21 days of January that registered below zero temperatures
are numbered [More...]
Mobile Life 1915
From free land in Oklahoma to free land in Montana in a
two horse-powered Mobile Home averaging 25 miles on week days and only taking two months for the entire
move. Grandpa scouted the Indian territory of Oklahoma and when the strip was opened, he was either
The famous buffalo hunter of all times was William F. Cody. In 1867-68 he supplied fresh buffalo meat to railroad workers who laid the track for the Kansas Pacific Railroad. By his own count he killed 4,280 of the great animals within a 17 month period. Thus he gained his nickname, Buffalo Bill Cody.
One old buffalo hunter told me the following story: [More...]
Chicago on a Stock Train
I was heading home over a stretch of sage scented benchland after an afternoon of searing prairie chickens when I came upon Jim Burnett bringing in a bunch of
two-year-olds. Old Jim, veteran of the days of Indians and vast open ranges, weather beaten to the color of his saddle, erect astride a big roan, what a picture he made!