GEOGRAPHIC INFORMATION

Montana Geographic Names Advisor

Geographic Name Change Request

Change Kelly Reservoir to Klatt Reservoir
Madison County, Montana

Status = Pending

Description reservoir, .6 acres, Located in Beaverhead-Deerlodge National Forest, 1.2 miles Southeast of Flatiron Mountain.
Location 44°57’47”N, 111°45’58”W
PLSS Location Section 18, Township 10 South, Range 1 West
Proposal to change the name of Kelly Reservoir to Klatt Reservoir
Proponent Sou Thao, U.S. Forest service
Not Kelly Reservoir
Administrative area Beaverhead-Deerlodge National Forest
Previous BGN Action None
See also
GNIS ID 806350
Local Usage Klatt Reservoir
Published USGS maps have labeled the ranch with two different names, Klatt Ranch and Kelly Ranch. The 1:62,500-scale topographic map, first published in 1950 and reprinted until 1987, uses the name Klatt Ranch. Subsequent 1:24,000-scale topographic maps (1988 to 2002) show the name Kelly Ranch. A newspaper article from 1950 refers to the “Klatt ranch,” while others from 2002 and 2008 refer to the “Kelly Ranch” or “Upper Kelly Ranch.”
This proposal would change the name of Kelly Reservoir to Klatt Reservoir. The 0.6-acre reservoir is located in the Beaverhead-Deerlodge National Forest in Madison County and has been labeled as Kelly Reservoir on USGS topographic maps since 1988.

The proponent, a U.S. Forest Service (USFS) cartographer, states that the proposed name change “is to align the name with the owner of the ranch at the time of construction of the facility and in line with the name of the builder and name of the permit issued for the project.” Ernest Klatt (1917-2003) and his brother Cecil (still living) owned the ranch when the reservoir was built. The proponent does not “think of the name change as to honor anyone in particular but that it is more accurate as to who built the reservoir.” He notes that the reservoir is “about 4 miles from the Klatt/Forest Service boundary fence.”

USGS maps have labeled the ranch with two different names, Klatt Ranch and Kelly Ranch. The 1:62,500-scale topographic map, first published in 1950 and reprinted until 1987, uses the name Klatt Ranch. Subsequent 1:24,000-scale topographic maps (1988 to 2002) show the name Kelly Ranch. A newspaper article from 1950 refers to the “Klatt ranch,” while others from 2002 and 2008 refer to the “Kelly Ranch” or “Upper Kelly Ranch.” The property originally owned by the Klatt family was purchased in the mid-1950s by the Kelly family, and the name of the reservoir was presumably changed accordingly.

The 1980 U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Dams and Reservoirs inventory records Klatt Dam at the site of the reservoir. A 1982 USFS memo to the owner of Kelly Ranch noted that the first permit issued at Klatt Dam and Reservoir in 1958 was being canceled. The “Klatt (Kelly) Reservoir Dam Decommissioning Project” was proposed in a 2016 USFS memo, which refers to “Klatt Reservoir (also called Kelly Reservoir).”

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