Creator: Story-Work Sheep Company

Provenance Note: Original documents created by the Story-Work Sheep Company were deposited in Special Collections sometime in the late 1960s. They were likely removed from the papers of Montana State University president Alfred Atkinson by Merrill G. Burlingame, but there is no documentation on the donation.

Historical Note: T. B. (Thomas Byron) Story, 1876-1954, was born in Bozeman, Montana, the second eldest son of Montana pioneer Nelson Story. He had many business interests in the Bozeman area including the operation of a prosperous flour mill. On November 27, 1916 Story applied for incorporation with the state of Montana for the Story-Work Sheep Company, an enterprise he founded with Lester Park Work (1889-1956). The firm ran at least 53,000 head on over 70,000 acres in Park, Sweet Grass and Gallatin counties by 1918 and profited greatly by the sale of wool to contractors producing uniforms for United States troops during World War I. Following the armistice, the price of wool declined, and the firm dissolved sometime in the early 1920s.

Content Description Note: The Story-Work Sheep Company records consist of: a 1916 prospectus for the sale of stock in the corporation with a signed cover letter by T. B. Story addressed to Professor Alfred Atkinson in Bozeman, Montana; a lengthy letter and attachments from T. B. Story to the secretary of the Montana Livestock Commission requesting a military draft exemption for Lester P. Work by citing the importance of wool production for the war effort; an annual report to the stockholders of the company dated December 31, 1920.

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Updated: 9/11/12