Montana Geographic Names Advisor

Geographic Name Change Request

Change Squaw Peak to Star Peak
Sanders County, Montana

Status = Approved

Description summit, elevation 1,880 m (6,167 ft), in Kaniksu National Forest and Kootenai National Forest, 2.7 km (1.7 mi) N of Cabinet Gorge Reservoir, 3.2 km (2 mi) SSE of Billiard Table; named for nearby Star Gulch
Location 48º05’36”N, 115º55’36”W
PLSS Location Sec 24,T27N,R34W
Proposal to change a name considered by some to be derogatory
Proponent Joyce Coupal; Noxon, MT
Not Squaw Peak
Administrative area Kaniksu National Forest, Kootenai National Forest
Previous BGN Action None
See also
GNIS ID 791394
Local Usage None found
Published Squaw Peak (USGS 1932, 1966; USFS 1966; Sanders County highway map 1973)
roposal, to change the name of Squaw Peak to Star Peak, was submitted to the Montana House Bill 412 Committee by a resident of Noxon. The 1,880 m (6,167 ft) high summit is located within Kaniksu National Forest, which is administered by the Kootenai National Forest. It lies approximately 2.7 km (1.7 mi) north of Cabinet Gorge Reservoir and 3.2 km (2 mi) south-southeast of Billiard Table, in Sanders County. The current name Squaw Peak has appeared on U.S. Geological Survey topographic maps since 1932, but the origin of the name is not known. The proponent suggested the name Star Peak because there is valley named Star Gulch on the northeast slope, and also because the summit is “pointing to the stars.” No other features in Montana are known to be named Star Peak. A copy of the proposal was sent to the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes of the Flathead Reservation and to the Coeur D’Alene Tribe, both of which are Federally-recognized, but no response was received, so it is presumed that the tribes do not have an opinion on the issue. The U.S. Forest Service, the House Bill 412 Committee, and the Montana Board on Geographic Names all recommend approval of the change to Star Peak.

Montana Geographic Names Advisor Recommendation - Support
Domestic Names Committee Decision Date - Thursday, December 11, 2003
Domestic Names Committee Discussion - This proposal, to change the name of Squaw Peak to Star Peak, was submitted to the Montana House Bill 412 Advisory Committee by a resident of Noxon (see Attachment A, #3). A motion was made and seconded to approve the change. Note: one member was absent when the voting took place.

Vote: 11 in favor
0 against
0 abstentions

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