Leander Black first came to Bozeman in 1869 from Denver. Black was one of the earliest pioneers but least well known to us. Black quickly became a legendary figure in Bozeman’s history. All we know about that Black came to Bozeman is a street name. (We live on Black Street and that’s why I wanted to research him.) Black left his young family at age 32 and joined a stampede to Pike’s Peak. Like lots of others, Black failed to find riches in the gold fields. As the Civil Wr got more intense, Black became the principle contractor for the Army of the Platte. In a way Black sold a lot of commodities and became one of the richest pioneers in Montana Territory. Black was very influential in Bozeman’s history.
Black was a business man. He started a lot of businesses in Bozeman. One of the things he also did in Bozeman is building many residential structures in Bozeman. One of the businesses Black started was the Avant Courier Newspaper in his time period. It later became the Bozeman Times Newspaper. Black also built the first brick building in Bozeman (on Main Street). Then he bought the guy house hotel on Main Street and renamed it the Northern Pacific Hotel. We don’t say this but in the paragraph Black has a lot of problems.
The Depression of 1873 caused Black many failures. Embarrassed by these failures Black moved to Butte where he became a successful miner.
Black suddenly passed away on June 16, 1881. Bozeman paid tribute to Black as a hard-working, well-known man of the West.
-Pioneer Museum research in Archives