Author Topic: Fort Owen, Montana  (Read 735 times)

Offline Virgil Lantey

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Fort Owen, Montana
« on: April 08, 2022, 07:49:09 PM »
I took a little 15 min. drive today up to Fort Owen, the first white settlement in the state of Montana. It's only an acre of ground but the history is incredibly fascinating. More study is definitely in order. There is a translation of Maj. John Owen's journal but, I'm told, that a better translation is forthcoming, thanks to a student at the University of Montana that is an expert in historical cursive writing. I look forward to reading that version!
"Around Dodge City and in the territories out west, there's only one way to handle the killers and the spoilers, and that's with a U.S. Marshall and the smell of...Gunsmoke!"

Offline matt45

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Re: Fort Owen, Montana
« Reply #1 on: April 09, 2022, 09:41:37 AM »
Help me out w/ the geography and the timetable, please.  Probably worth a ride ;D

Offline Virgil Lantey

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Re: Fort Owen, Montana
« Reply #2 on: April 09, 2022, 10:14:37 AM »
Fort Owen is in western Montana, about 20 miles south of Missoula, just east of hwy. 93. Between hwy. 93 and the town of Stevensville.
Maj. Owen opened the trading post in the 1840s on the original site of St. Mary's Mission. The mission itself was relocated to its present location in Stevensville in the 1850s. You can tour the mission beginning on April 19th.  They have a visitor center also.
"Around Dodge City and in the territories out west, there's only one way to handle the killers and the spoilers, and that's with a U.S. Marshall and the smell of...Gunsmoke!"

Offline Trailrider

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Re: Fort Owen, Montana
« Reply #3 on: April 09, 2022, 01:25:46 PM »
" You can tour the mission beginning on April 19th.  They have a visitor center also."  Yeah, but if you go that early, best have survival gear in the car and sub-zero qualified clothing! Never was over on that side of the Divide, but on the East side, in Central Montana, we checked out AF survival gear anytime between 15 September and the following 30 June!  :o
Ride to the sound of the guns, but watch out for bushwhackers! Godspeed to all in harm's way in the defense of Freedom! God Bless America!

Your obedient servant,
Trailrider,
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Southern District
Dept. of the Platte, GAF

Offline matt45

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Re: Fort Owen, Montana
« Reply #4 on: April 09, 2022, 05:49:05 PM »
I'm from down in The Big Hole.  I had to look up Ft. Owen after we confab'd.  I am going to quibble a bit w/ the history, considering there were all kinds of trading posts in MT before 1840- Salish House would be my first 'yeah, but'

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Re: Fort Owen, Montana
« Reply #5 on: Today at 03:38:38 AM »

Offline Virgil Lantey

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Re: Fort Owen, Montana
« Reply #5 on: April 09, 2022, 07:00:03 PM »
My description may have been a bit inaccurate in that I said it was Montanas first white settlement when I should have said Montanas first PERMANENT white settlement. I'm no historian but I wonder if that could be the distinction. Salish house, for instance, closed, dried up and disappeared entirely. I'm just guessing here and I'll ask an expert the first chance I get.
Still, an interesting place with a lot of history.
"Around Dodge City and in the territories out west, there's only one way to handle the killers and the spoilers, and that's with a U.S. Marshall and the smell of...Gunsmoke!"

Offline matt45

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Re: Fort Owen, Montana
« Reply #6 on: April 10, 2022, 08:38:26 AM »
 ;)

Offline Buck Stinson

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Re: Fort Owen, Montana
« Reply #7 on: April 14, 2022, 08:47:54 PM »
I live about 7 miles north of Ft. Owen.  You can feel the history when you walk the ground around the barracks.   St. Mary's mission was built between 1841 and 1845.  John Owen built the fort/trading post around 1857.

 

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