Montana Geographic Names Advisor

Geographic Name Change Request

Ferris Peak
Madison County, Montana

Status = Approved

Description summit, elevation 10,135 feet, located in Beaverhead National Forest in the Tobacco Root Mountains, 0.4 mi. SW of Noble Peak, 1 mi. NE of Cloudrest Peak
Location 45°33’32”N, 112°03’57”W
PLSS Location Section 23, Township 3 South, Range 4 West
Proposal new commemorative name for an unnamed feature
Proponent Carla Noble; Oceanside, CA
Administrative area Beaverhead National Forest
Previous BGN Action None
See also
GNIS ID 2747220
Local Usage None found
Published None found
This 10,135-foot summit is located in Beaverhead National Forest between Noble Peak and Cloudrest Peak. The proposed name, Ferris Peak, is intended to honor Jane Franks Ferris (1824-1873). A native of Toronto, Canada, Mrs. Ferris migrated with her husband and children to Illinois, then Kansas Territory, and finally to Montana, where her husband staked a gold mine claim. Widowed a short time later, Mrs. Ferris and her children moved to Sheridan, Montana, in 1866. According to the proponent, Mrs. Ferris became a seamstress, housekeeper, and caretaker for a local homesteader, who upon his death in 1870 willed his property to her. In order to inherit the property, Mrs. Ferris became the first woman in the Sheridan area to be granted a homestead using the Preemption Act of 1841. She lived on the 160-acre homestead until her death at the age of 48. She was buried on the property and her orphaned children were taken in by neighbors. Her daughter married into the Noble family, for whom nearby Noble Peak is named (the proponent is a descendant of this family). In 2003, the homestead property, the Ferris-Hermsmeyer-Fenton Ranch, was designated a National Historic Place.

The proposed name, Ferris Peak, is supported by the owners of The Fenton House, a restored historical homestead in Sheridan. It also has the support of the Noble family, as well as that of a licensed outfitter and guide in Montana for 19 years. The Madison County Board of Commissioners, the Sheridan Town Council, and the Beaverhead-Deerlodge National Forest support the proposal.

GNIS lists five other features in Montana with “Ferris” in their names: two canals, a dam, a locale, and a populated place. However, none are in Madison County and none are believed to be named for the same family.

Comments Received by the Montana Geographic Names Advisor
Montana Geographic Names Advisor Recommendation - Support (Tuesday, December 17, 2013)
Domestic Names Committee Decision Date - Thursday, March 13, 2014
Domestic Names Committee Discussion - A motion was made and seconded to approve this name.
Vote: 8 in favor
0 against
0 abstentions

Page History