Open Range Cattle

Open Range Cattle (HM2MQV)

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N 47° 49.052', W 110° 40.028'

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In the late 1870's after the gold rush, stockmen began to move cattle from the mountains to the northern plains of Montana and utilize the free grass on the open ranges. Montana's short grass prairies had the best grass of the entire Great Plains. Soon large cattle drives from Texas flooded the Montana range until the hard winter of 1886-1887 caused tremendous losses, and the beginning of the end to the open range cattle business
Local cattlemen banded together in associations to protect their herds from wolves, rustlers and Texas cattle. There were two associations headquartered in Fort Benton. Members of the Shonkin Stock Association ranged south of the Missouri to the foothills of the Highwoods and east to Arrow Creek. The second association was the Teton-Marias Association that was north of the river to the Canadian boarder and west to the Rocky mountains.
The associations hired cowboys to ride the range for roundup, branding and moving the herds to market in the fall. Cowboys were free-spirited wanderers who worked by the season and owned only the guns they carried and saddle they rode.
Placed ByFort Benton Community Improvement Association
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Friday, November 8th, 2019 at 7:01pm PST -08:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)12T E 524917 N 5296073
Decimal Degrees47.81753333, -110.66713333
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 47° 49.052', W 110° 40.028'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds47° 49' 3.12" N, 110° 40' 1.6799999999999" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Which side of the road?Marker is on the right when traveling East
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