A Moving History: Native Trails in Park County

Livingston, Montana: Historian Jerry Brekke presents “The Big Bend of the Yellowstone Trail Nexus” on Wednesday, March 14, 7:00 pm, at the Yellowstone Gateway Museum. This is the second program in the museum’s A Moving History speaker series. Two upcoming programs explore the Yellowstone Trail and traveling the Lewis & Clark trail.

Historian Jerry Brekke

Historian Jerry Brekke

Was Capt. William Clark a “path finder,” Jim Bridger a “trailblazer,” or John Bozeman a “pioneer?” Or were they, compared to the antiquity of the trails they traveled, Johnny-come-latelys? Through a discussion of time, culture, and technology, Brekke’s PowerPoint presentation illustrates native trails that converge at the Big Bend of the Yellowstone River—trails that have survived to become the highways and roads we travel today.

Jerry Brekke is a life-long resident of Livingston, Montana. For several years, he and his wife Pat operated Brekke Photography Studio in Livingston and for several more he pursued his interest in regional history. Brekke served as Senior Historian for Anthro Research, Inc., Park County Historian, and as a historical consultant focusing on road research. Now retired, Jerry and Pat live on Mission Creek.                                       

Two weeks later, on Wednesday, March 28, graduate history student Lerick Allen presents “Convicts, Boosters, and Citizens: Park County’s contribution to the Yellowstone Trail” and on Wednesday, April 11, Lewis and Clark historian Norm Miller presents “In the Wake of Discovery: Traveling the Lewis and Clark Trail by Canoe and Foot.” Stay tuned for more details about each program.

All programs are part of the museum’s Wednesday evening programming, Hump Day History, and are held at 7:00 pm at the Yellowstone Gateway Museum, 118 W. Chinook, Livingston. The speaker series is free and open to the public and refreshments are served. Doors will open at 6:00 pm for people to grab a seat and enjoy the museum’s exhibits before the program. Seating is limited! (We may offer two back-to-back programs on March 28 and April 11, scheduling additional programs at 5:00 pm. There will be only one showing of Brekke’s program on March 14.) Attendees must climb stairs to the top floor of museum for the program.

Watch for more information about upcoming programs or contact Karen Reinhart at 222-4184 or kreinhart@parkcounty.org. Visit our Facebook page, yellowstonegatewaymuseum.