Montana's Historical Highway Markers
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Posted by Hal Neumann (+9804) 15 years ago
The "founder" of Montana's historical highway marker program was Robert H. Fletcher. He worked for the Highway Department in the 1930s and led the drive to put the markers up. Fletcher did the research and wrote the texts for many of the original markers that were put up in the 1930s.

He published a book in 1938 that provided maps to the first series of markers and provided copies of their texts. This book has been reprinted several times and is still fairly easily found and relatively affordable.

Robert H. Fletcher, 1885-1972, MONTANA HIGHWAY HISTORICAL MARKERS (Helena, Montana: Printed by Naegele Print. Co., 1938).

In 1999 the Montana Historical Society press published an updated and revised version of Fletcher's 1938 text.

Robert H Fletcher, and Glenda Clay Bradshaw, Jon Axline, and Irvin Shope, MONTANA'S HISTORICAL HIGHWAY MARKERS, Revised & Expanded (Helena: Montana Historical Society Press, 1999).

He published other books as well, notably:

Robert H. Fletcher, FREE GRASS TO FENCES: THE MONTANA CATTLE RANGE STORY (New York: University Publishers, 1960.

He was also a successful cowboy poet and balladeer. If you're into old time "cowboy" songs you may have heard one he wrote in 1936, "Bang! Bang!! Bang!!!" - also known as the "The Ballad of Pug-Nosed Lil".

But in terms his poetry / song lyrics, Fletcher is best know for having written the lyrics to "Don't Fence Me In", which Cole Porter set to music in 1934. Roy Rogers scored a big hit with the tune in the film 'Hollywood Canteen (1944).
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Posted by Salli (Scanlan) Starkey (+243) 15 years ago
How cool, thanks
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Posted by Hal Neumann (+9804) 15 years ago
>>How cool, thanks

No problem at all. I've a million little factoids like that stored away on files and in my head . . . well . . . maybe not a million, but a lot of them
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Posted by Hal Neumann (+9804) 6 years ago
Montana Historical Markers
Hosted online courtesy of the Montana Memory Project:
http://mtmemory.org/cdm/r...l1/id/4345

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Posted by Amorette Allison (+11610) 6 years ago
Darrell Gudmundson of Miles City did the actual physical design and wood burning of the many of the early markers. He used to have a huge wood burned map of Montana on his porch that was really impressive.
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