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Manuscript Example of the First Map of Custer County, Montana

Rare Manuscript Copy of the William Flynn's map of Custer County, Montana, drawn in 1903.

This is an exact facsimile copy of the original printed version of Flynn's map of Custer County. The area shown includes the current counties of Carter, Powder River, Custer and Fallon, and portions of Prairie and Wibaux, comprising the southeastern corner of the state of Montana.

The Map includes some physical relief, roads, railroads and the Northern Pacific's land-grant limits, military forts and reservations, ranch sites and some owner designations, settlements and towns, surveyed and unsurveyed sections, and township and range designations.

William P. Flynn

Flynn was a well-known historical figure whose surveying and mapping skills are part of Montana history. Flynn was from Adair, Iowa.  At age 23, he started classes on Sep 3, 1888 and received an A.B. Degree in 1891.

After graduation, W. P. Flynn became a military school teacher at Fort Keogh from 1895-1896 in the 2nd Infantry, Company F. He enlisted at the age of 29 from Omaha NE on May 29, 1895 and was discharged from the US Army at Fort Keogh on Sep 19 1896.

A civil engineer, he was a member of the first graduating class of Creighton University and is credited with the first maps for both Custer (which included most of the eastern half of Montana in those days) and Teton Counties.


The map is apparently quite rare. OCLC lists examples at Yale, the Newberry Library and Montana Historical Society. We were unable to locate any auction or dealer catalog entries for the map.