I-94, MP 242, Wibaux Rest Area
In 1876, this was strictly buffalo and Indian country. From 1876 to 1881, the U.S. Army rounded up the Indians and forced them onto reservations while buffalo hunters cleared the range for the cattle boom of the Eighties.
Pierre Wibaux ran one of the biggest cattle spreads around here in the early days. A native of France, he arrived in Montana in 1883 after studying the cattle industry from calf to packing house. Within a decade of his arrival, he had amassed a herd of 65,000 cattle and prospered from business investments throughout the region. Wibaux had boundless optimism for his adopted state and once said that “If a man is intelligent, has courage, and can see things clearly, he can make money.” Through his guidance, the wide-open cow town of Mingusville was renamed Wibaux and became a significant cattle and sheep shipping point on the Northern Pacific Railway. When Wibaux died in 1913, his will provided a fund to erect a statue of himself in the town named for him.
From this end of Montana to the west end is just about the same distance as from New York to Chicago. You have to push a lot of ground behind you to get places in this state.