Creator: Story, Nelson, 1838-1926


Provenance Note: The Nelson Story letter was donated by Elsa Spear Byron of Sheridan, Wyoming, to the Museum of the Rockies in January 1985. The Museum transferred ownership to Special Collections on January 11, 1985.


Historical Note: Nelson Story, Sr. (1838-1926) was a pioneer Montana rancher and entrepreneur. Born in Meigs County, Ohio to Ira and Hannah Story, Nelson grew up on the family farm and briefly attended college. He traveled west to Montana during the gold rush of the early 1860s and after achieving success in mining invested in Texas cattle, driving a herd back to Montana from Texas and establishing a ranch in the Yellowstone Valley. He later moved to Bozeman and became one of the town's most wealthy citizens. His many business interests in Bozeman included banking, real estate, and milling during the latter part of the nineteenth century. Story also invested in Los Angeles, California real estate towards the end of his life with his brother Walter. Story was married Ellen Trent and the couple had seven children.


Content Description Note: The Nelson Story letter was written by him in 1911 in response to a solicitation from a "Miss Willets" for his recollections of John Bozeman. The letter briefly describes Bozeman's physical appearance, demeanor, and the trail he blazed to the Montana gold fields in the early 1860s. There is also a brief description of the Bridger Trail route.

Nelson Story letter

Updated: 1/19/11