Saturday, June 23, 2012

Theodore Roosevelt National Park - Maltese Cross Cabin

We went to the Roger Maris Museum in Fargo North Dakota yesterday which we will blog about later since we have some blogging to catch up on.

While in Medora North Dakota we visited the Theodore Roosevelt National Park. Here is one of our visits.

Teddy Roosevelt said that "I would not have been President if not for my time in North Dakota". He first visited North Dakota in 1883 to hunt bison. Liking the area so much he bought the Maltese Cross Ranch (also known as the Chimney Butte Ranch). He returned east and in 1884 had one of the all time worst days. On Valentine's Day his wife died from complications from giving birth and his mother died from typhoid fever. Devastated he returned to what would become the Medora North Dakota area (more on that in a future blog posting).

He had his ranch hands build a cabin which has been moved to its current location outside the visitors center of the South Unit of Theodore Roosevelt National Park.

It seems like there is always a railroad story when you talk about anything. The lumber used for the cabin is ponderosa pine which is not found in the area. The ranch hands who built the cabin stole the lumber from the Northern Pacific Railroad. An enterprising reporter brought this up during one of Teddy's many political campaigns. 

The cabin's pitched roof, common back east, was an oddity in the area. The design allowed a loft area above the main floor for the ranch hands. With three separate rooms and wooden floors and imported wood it was considered a "mansion" in the area. Some of the items like the photos in the bedroom and a trunk are Teddy's but most of the items are period pieces.

Here is the kitchen.

Here is Teddy's bedroom.

Here is the living room.

The original location of the Maltese Cabin was along a stage coach route and it became too noisy and busy for Teddy so he bought the Elkhorn Ranch about 35 north. He had a ranch house built there that is no longer standing but there is a model of what it looked like in the visitors center.

In future blog postings we will continue our tour of the Medora North Dakota area.

Till next time,

Bob and Jo

1 comment:

  1. How interesting about Roosevelt and his wife and mother. I never knew what a horrible day he did have!

    A good with the post. Very interesting.