A Trip to Big Sky Country, Part 3

in which we inconviently skip over the day at Yellowstone, but that is because I dropped and broke my camera, and the photos from that day are on my host’s camera. I’ll get them soon, and will blog a bit when they arrive.

The view from the deck was still gorgeous:

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After a long day at Yellowstone, we took it easier the next day.  We went to the Montana store so I could buy a couple of goodies for family back home, I got to visit the Pioneer Museum, which is lovely and very well maintained. Since it is the site of the old jail, there are plenty of tales about it, and we got to see the exact spot of the one inmate who was hanged there. I don’t think I needed that.

Probably the juiciest part of Bozeman’s history surrounds its eponymous founder, John Bozeman. Bozeman left (abandoned?) his family in Georgia, and came west. He managed to find a faster way to Bozeman, but it was faster only because it illegally cut across hunting areas reserved for native tribes. Whatta guy. He died mysteriously – the board that reviewed his death said it was probably murder, and the speculation is that he was having an affair with a married woman (women being in short supply during this time period).

For days, we’d driven past a small historic schoolhouse, and finally I badgered Carol to get the code for the key to the schoolhouse, and she did! It’s  a tiny one-room schoolhouse:

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that is on the National Register for Historic Sites:

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And still has a lot of period items in it, including desks, maps and books:
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Yes, that map really says Belgian Congo, French West Africa and Union of South Africa! Sanitation was pretty basic – two outhouses and this to wash up with:

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On my last day, Carol drove me out to Three Forks, which I had passed both coming and going across the state, but didn’t stop.  This is one of the “big” event places where Lewis & Clark stopped. Lewis & Clark are to Montana what George Washington is to the mid-Atlantic states. Locals will tell you what they did in this particular spot, and there are markers everywhere.

But Three Forks is significant because it signals the accomplishment of one of the goals of the Lewis & Clark expedition – to find the source of the Missouri River, which traverses over a significant part of the continental United States. Three Forks is the place where the Missouri begins. The mission statement of the trip that President Jefferson is immortalized in a sign:
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which points out a small geographic problem – the Missouri does not connect to the Pacific Ocean. Oh well!

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Now a state park (officially Missouri Headwaters State Park), it is a lovely and peaceful place.

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With romantic notions of the discovery of the source in my head, it was time to leave Montana. I wore my sheep socks through security (does anybody else get “ewww!” when they see barefoot folks walking through?)

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and one last few of the mountains before my flight took off.
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Today I picked up Undaunted Courage by Stephen Ambrose from the library – a way to continue my “travels” while staying close to home!

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