Montana Geographic Names Advisor

Geographic Name Change Request

Change Squaw Reservoir to Maverick Reservoir
Carter County, Montana

Status = Approved

Description reservoir, 38 m (125 ft) long, located in Custer National Forest, 5.3 km (3.3 mi) SE of Sykes Corner, along an unnamed tributary of Maverick Gulch; named for nearby Maverick Gulch
Location 45°37’52”N, 104°15’12”W
PLSS Location Sec 25, T2S, R60E
Proposal to change a name considered by some to be derogatory
Proponent Carol Juneau; Browning, MT
Not Squaw Reservoir
Administrative area Custer National Forest
Previous BGN Action None
See also 38301
GNIS ID 799497
Local Usage None found
Published Squaw Reservoir (USGS 1993)
This proposal was submitted by the Chair of the Montana House Bill 412 Committee, which was tasked in 1999 with changing all geographic names in the State containing the term Squaw. The State Legislature believes the existing name is derogatory. The small reservoir, just 38 m (125 ft) long, first appeared on U.S. Geological Survey topographic maps in 1993; the origin of the name has not been determined. In 2003, the BGN received a proposal to change the name to Buffalo Reservoir, but at its January 2005 meeting that name was rejected citing the existence of 110 other geographic features in Montana already named “Buffalo.”

The new replacement name was also suggested by the HB 412 Committee, and was chosen because the reservoir lies just to the west of Maverick Gulch. The Montana State Board on Geographic Names made several attempts to solicit input from the Carter County Commissioners but has determined no response is forthcoming; the State Board recommends approval of the change to Maverick Reservoir. The Forest Service also supports the change. A copy of the proposal was sent to the Shoshone-Bannock Tribes of Fort Hall Reservation in Idaho, a Federally-recognized Tribe, but no response was received, which is presumed to indicate a lack of an opinion. In addition to the aforementioned valley, there are two springs in Carter County named “Maverick.” Elsewhere in the State, there are eight features with that name, including one other reservoir, located in Valley County 320 km (200 mi) from the one in Carter County.

Montana Geographic Names Advisor Recommendation - Support (Tuesday, January 10, 2006)
Domestic Names Committee Decision Date - Tuesday, June 6, 2006
Domestic Names Committee Discussion - A motion was made and seconded to approve this change.

Vote: 12 in favor
0 against
0 abstentions

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