James Bell


James Bell Armstrong


Ina Tascher



Download Audio Interview (154.7 MB)

Download Tape Counter Index of James Armstrong Interview (2.8 MB)


James “J. B.” Armstrong recalls stories about his family’s time in Texas, and talks about working for the Mill Iron outfit in Montana in 1907. He reminisces about Jack Kennedy from the Sheep Mountains with whom Armstrong stayed and cooked a meal. He talks about a bucking contest in Camp Crook, South Dakota in 1908, where the Mill Iron, CY, and MC outfits’ cowhands competed against one another. He talks about getting bucked off his brother’s horse in 1907. Armstrong also describes an outlaw named Red Buck and his posse that killed a man named Glover in Oklahoma in 1897. He recalls a conflict between settlers who built fences and the open-range cowhands. Armstrong remembers going to a funeral in 1898 for a woman who died in childbirth. He also talks about a wedding in Oklahoma Territory and his associate Pruny Bill.

This audio has not been transcribed, but a tape counter index is available.


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Document Type

Oral History


Cowhands; Mill Iron outfit; Bucking contests; Outlaws, Montana; Pioneering; Montana; Oklahoma Territory; Settlers, Montana; Fenced ranges; Open ranges; Texas; Armstrong, James Bell, 1888-1971; Cowboys -- West (U.S.) – Interviews; Frontier and pioneer life -- Indian Territory -- 19th century; Camp Crook (S.D.) -- History -- 20th century; Mill Iron Ranch (Powder River, Mont.); Women pioneers; Bronc riding -- South Dakota -- Camp Crook -- Personal narratives; Rodeos -- Montana -- Ekalaka -- History -- 20th century; Outlaws -- Oklahoma -- 19th century; CY Ranch; MC Ranch; Pruny Bill; Kennedy, Jack; Buck, Red

Original Date


Time Period

Twentieth century

Geographic Coverage




Original Collection

James Bell “J. B.” Armstrong Oral History Project, OH 034, Archives and Special Collections, Mansfield Library, University of Montana-Missoula

Digital Publisher

University of Montana--Missoula. Mansfield Library


Copyright to this collection is held by the interview participants and by the Maureen and Mike Mansfield Library, University of Montana-Missoula. Permission may be required for use. For further information please contact Archives and Special Collections: (406) 243-2053 / library.archives@umontana.edu

Oral History Number

OH 034-009

Media Type

Sound; Text

Original Format

1 reel-to-reel: analog + 1 tape counter index (5 p.: 28 cm)

Digital Format

audio/mp3; application/pdf

Run Time

02:00:32 minutes

Local Filename

OH_034_009.mp3; OH_034_009_TCI.pdf

James Bell