Yorks Islands Fishing Access Commemoration
July 28, 2001

Rose Oleson
Rose Oleson, Crimson Bluffs Chapter President

The Crimson Bluffs Chapter is pleased to announce that the U.S. Board on Geographic Names has approved the name Yorks Islands for the group of Missouri River islands in Broadwater County. The name was also approved by the Montana Board on Geographic Names and has been entered into the Nation’s official automated geographic names repository. It has been published in the book Decision List 2000. The area fittingly bears the name Yorks Islands in keeping with Clark’s intention to honor his servant and boyhood companion, York. The group of islands is located on the Missouri river, just south of Townsend, Montana. The islands are included on maps in the journals of Lewis and Clark.

John Stoner
On July 28, 2001, efforts spearheaded by Crimson Bluffs Chaper member John Stoner culminated in a commemoration ceremony officially re-naming the previously known “Deep Dale Fishing Access” to the “Yorks Islands Fishing Access” (on US Highway 287, 4 miles south of Townsend).

Troy Helmick and Huel Willis, Lewis and Clark Interpreter
They were joined by historians, representatives of Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks, and Huel Willis of the Great Falls Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center, portraying “Ben” —York’s cousin. Ben’s character was so convencing, it was a delight to attend.  Mr. Willis’ presence was the highlight of the ceremony.  Afterwards he was rewarded with a hearty round of applause and presented by Troy Helmick with a framed photo of Yorks Islands.