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Hill 57 or Little Shell Hill (Twin Peaks)



Within Rocky Boy's Reservation, there remains one community. That is Hill 57. Today, there may be between 8 to 10 households living at Hill 57. However, in the first half of the 20th century, there were several Rocky Boy Reservation communities adjacent to and near Great Falls. A census was conducted by Raymond Gray in 1941 to determine how many Chippewa's lived in the 5 villages. Gray's census counted a total of 278 Chippewa's living in 5 different locations. Gray supposedly did not count the spouses in the census which means the population was higher than 278. Gray counted 68 families. That would mean another 136 Chippewa's should have been included in the census Gray conducted in September of 1941. Their population was around 414 in 1941. He recorded a total of 68 families living in the scattered settlements and that the 68 families lived in 53 households. Obviously the Chippewa families helped one another. In 1921, there was an Ojibwa village where the Oil Refinery is now. They were forced to leave that village in 1921. In 1914, it was reported by the Great Falls Tribune, that 700 Ojibwa's were now living adjacent to and near Great Falls, with ogima Rocky Boy.



Many of the families in those times had to take care of the elderly which obviously means the family sizes were larger then (the 1930s). Since there were discrepancies in the census of 1941, the population of the community was obviously closer to 400. The largest settlement was Twin Peaks (Ni-zho-day Kish-ka-di-nan in Anishinabe), with 37 families or between 160 and 222 people. At Little Shell Hill (Kish-ka-di-na Ses'es in Anishinabe), which is the top part of Twin Peaks which is a small plateau, 11 families lived or between 45 and 66 people. At Smelter Hill (Wire Mill Road) which is 2 miles east of Hill 57, lived 8 familes or between 32 and 48 people.



Wire Mill Road begins in Black Eagle, about three blocks from the old Havre highway which is an extension of 10th street in Great Falls. They probably confined themselves to the more northerly part of what is now Black Eagle, or a little north of Black Eagle. The Chippewa's obviously had a settlement adjacent to Black Eagle Falls. Wire Mill Road leads north to Black Eagle Road and Rainbow Falls road. Just west of Great Falls and south of Twin Peaks, was another small settlement of 8 families with a population between 32 and 48 people. It was located near or at what is now Wadsworth Park. Another settlement was located in south Great Falls. However, it was not considered a distinct community. The other settlements were Indian settlements. Only Twin Peaks has a Chippewa population now. Around 8 to 10 families still live at Twin Peaks. Up until recently, some Chippewa's were still living on top of Little Shell Hill. There may be one family living there now.



From a population of probably near 400 or more in the mid 1950s, the Rocky Boy Reservation community of Hill 57, has a population of probably less than 30 at the present time. It was Denise Hortense Tolan who is responsible for this cowardly act. Today, the only Anishinabe people in Montana clinging on to their Anishinabe identity are the Hill 57 Chippewa's and the Black River and Swan Creek Chippewa's. However, there are still many Chippewa's on all Montana Reservations, clinging on to their Anishinabe identity. They are not organized that i know of.



Little Shell Mountain or Hill 57, is a small plateau. Like Square Butte and the many other Buttes in the Great Falls region. It is about 1 mile from south to north and from 6 to 8 blocks from east to west. It covers between 500 and 1,000 acres. It is anywhere from 150 feet to over 215 feet higher up than the city of Great Falls, excepting the north end where it levels out to join the prairie. The Hill 57 Rocky Boy Reservation settlement is located adjacent to the twin peaks. It is a good 215 feet lower in elevation. Very little remains of the Chippewa settlement on top of Little Shell Mountain or Hill 57. There may be one Chippewa family living there now. Below are several links to google earth photos of the Rocky Boy Reservation community of Hill 57. The first shows the shell indent between the twin peaks.



Demographics of Hill 57

Settlements

Twin Peaks: Population is between 10 and 30.

Little Shell Mountain or Hill 57: Population is ?

Total population is between 10 and 30.



Click for Great Falls, Montana Forecast




Photo of the Shell Indent between Twin Peaks

Hill 57 From Above

Road Close Up

Road Close Up

Road Close Up

Road Close Up

Road Close Up



Rocky Boy Tribe of Chippewa Indians of Montana Seeking Federal Rocognition


Free Book


The Algonquian Conquest of the Mediterranean Region of 11,500 Years Ago




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