Historical letters from 1884-1887, sheep rancher
Posted by Darlene Schneck (+7) 9 years ago

My mother recently gave me letters (typed from the original handwritten letters)which were written by her great-uncle Issac Schultz, who was a sheep rancher in your area from 1884-1887. The letters contain a lot of interesting details about the difficulties of sheep ranching in the frontier (he lost most of his sheep to blizzards) and other interesting facts such as "the buffalos are almost all gone..." (1884) "The cow boys as a general thing do not like sheep men....When sober they are quiet and peaceable... when they go to town they most always get full of whiskey when they shoot up the town.."(1885) "Miles City is building up slowly some good brick buildings this summer. We are having some nice entertainment at times. Minnie Hauk gave a fine concert in the Rink some time ago." (1886).

The letters are all dated along with the location they were written in: Custer Creek, Sheep Mountains and Miles City, Montana.

Do you know of anyone who would like copies of these letters? I would like to share them with your community, as I think they would add to your historical record.

I can be contacted at [email protected]

Thank you,

Darlene Schneck
1410 N Coalter St Apt 204
Staunton, VA 24401
Posted by Diana Crippen (+124) 9 years ago
Darlene -

I would dearly love copies of your letters. My great grandfather was a sheepman, NE of Glendive, in those years. He left a journal, but the writing ends mid-sentence in 1886. I have often wondered if the sheepman/cattleman conflict left him to leave Dawson County and go to Ravalli County, in 1888. He was named Dawson County Sheep Commissioner by the territorial governor, in 1885.

Anything of his life would be of interest to my cousins and I.

Thank you for your very kind offer.

Diana Crippen
dmcripn at yahoo.com

[This message has been edited by Diana Crippen (11/17/2012)]
Posted by Amorette Allison (+11757) 9 years ago
As the history columnist for the Star, I would love copies! Let me know how to get them.
Posted by Cindy Stalcup (+586) 9 years ago
In addition to Miles City historians, the Montana Historical Society would likely be interested in acquiring a transcription for their archives.

Contact Molly in aquistions at email:

[email protected]
Posted by Donna Faber (+1) 9 years ago
My grandparents homesteaded in the early 1900s on Custer Creek at the base of Little Sheep Mountain. The third-generation is still ranching on the same land. My mother has written many historical books on our family and of the area, so she would be very interested in reading these letters. Thank you for the offer of sending them.
Donna (Haughian) Faber
Posted by Darlene Schneck (+7) 9 years ago

Some interesting things have developed since I posted on the website yesterday. I just talked with my mom and her cousin. A photograph of Isaac Schultz has surfaced, along with some additional family information. I am a book designer, and am now planning on creating an inexpensive self-published booklet which will contain the letters, along with background material about Isaac. The booklet will be available early in 2013, and I will let you know when that happens. I would prefer that you get the information that way, instead of me sending you photocopies of the transcriptions. There seems to be a good deal of interest in your area as well as in my family--which causes me to want to spend the time to make his letters available in a more readable and attractive format (along with some context as to where he came from and where he died.)

I'll be in touch with you again once it is available for sale. Thank you so much, and I look forward to sharing these letters with the people of Montana.

Darlene Schneck