After many years of wishing to find the perfect reason (or excuse, however you look at it) Sandra finally had Tag to agree on moving the Saw Mill Cabin down to the ranch headquarters.
For those of you who have been to the Blacktail, the Sawmill Cabin is the old cabin that has sat up by the Blacktail Cave and has been there since the late 1920’s. The original use of this building was as a bunkhouse. A homesteading family from the late 1890, the Manix family built this cabin to house wagon drivers who were transporting ore from Mike Horse Mine to the smelter in East Helena. They used the old county road that sits at the head of the South Fork of the Dearborn River. Actually, this road is at upper end of the Blacktail Ranch. We think they stayed over night, shared a meal or had a cool drink.
The mine closed and in the early part of the 1900’s the Rittel family acquired the land and the
cabin. They moved it to where it has sat since, on the creek bank right in front of the Blacktail Cave. The Rittel family moved in a sawmill where they sawed lumber up until the 1940’s it was used again as a bunkhouse. Some of the artifacts can still be recognized and viewed at the site.
Many hunters and campers would stay in the cabin. This is when it became know as the Saw Mill Cabin. Tag staged a number of Muzzle Loading hunts out of the cabin as well as many other hunters and guest who were staying at the Ranch.
Over the years it was used less and less and of course began to deteriorate. To help to keep it’s legend and stories alive we moved it down to the Ranch Headquarters in the summer of 2017.