A Stockmen's Association Begins

Dec 19, 2011

The need for a Stockmen’s association in Medora, North Dakota in the early 1880s was clear. There needed to be a central group who could decide and enforce range rules for the area. The Bad Lands Cow Boy, the Medora newspaper, had thrown its support behind the call. In February of 1884, a group of stockmen had met and drawn up the by-laws for the group. However, the group stalled until Theodore Roosevelt also gave his support to the association that met for the first time on December 19, 1884. Roosevelt was elected chairman of the organization which decided to call itself the Little Missouri Stockmen’s Association.

Minutes of a meeting of the stockmen of the Little Missouri

Detail, Minutes of a meeting of the stockmen of the Little Missouri, December 19, 1884. MS Am 1541 (309).   Houghton Library. Harvard University. Electronic copy sponsored by the Theodore Roosevelt Center at Dickinson State University. For reproduction or publication permission, contact the Theodore Roosevelt Collection, Houghton Library.

Roosevelt would remain active in the association as long as he ranched in the Dakota Badlands, even serving as a representative for the organization at the Montana Stockgrowers Association annual meeting in 1886.


Morris, Edmund. The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt, 1979

NPS Historical Handbook

Posted by Krystal Thomas on Dec 19, 2011 in History  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)  |  Share this post

Wally Wedel said,

Assocation should be Association in your title!

Krystal Thomas said,

Thanks Wally! I've made the change

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