Savenac Nursery Historic District


Haugan 59867,Missoula Area

Map Location

Historical Markers/Interpretive SignHistoric Sites
General info

Creation of the National Forest Service in 1905 brought Elers Koch, one of the nation's first professional foresters, to inspect and evaluate the Forest Reserves of Montana and Wyoming. Appointed Forest Supervisor of the Bitterroot and Lolo National Forests in 1907, Koch happened upon the abandoned homestead of a German settler named Savennach. He thought it a perfect spot to establish a tree nursery. Work began in 1908 and just as the first pine seedlings were ready for transplanting in 1910, fire swept through the region scorching 3 million acres of timberland. The nursery was destroyed, but the disaster influenced Forest Service policy, making fire prevention and conservation its primary mission. Reforestation of burned and logged areas figured prominently in that goal. Savenac Nursery was ideally situated along two railroad routes and the historic Mullan Road ran right through the property. The nursery was immediately rebuilt. Circa 1912 national road improvements incorporated the new Yellowstone Trail into this segment of the Mullan Road and by 1916, Savenac shipped several million seedlings to the vast Northern Region. The Civilian Conservation Corps rebuilt and modernized the facility a final time between 1932 and 1948. Savenac became the largest tree nursery in the northwest producing up to twelve million trees annually. The nursery operated until regional reorganization brought closure in 1969. Savenac Nursery, where much of the theory and practice of silviculture was pioneered, reflects the conservation ethic of the Forest Service.

About Us

Our mission is to provide the most comprehensive information site for the state of Montana. We welcome public input and comments.


1627 W. Main #447
Bozeman, MT 59715

Contact Us

Created with love by New Times Media Corporation

We're New Times Media - a friendly and fun group of people. At New Times Media we love to share anything and everything we know about the great state of Montana, so we created this site to make learning about our state as easy as possible. Our site is free to use and has the simplest possible user interface.

Privacy policy:

We use Google Analytics for site usage analytics. Your IP address is saved on our web server, but it's not associated with any personally identifiable information. We want you to enjoy and benefit from our site without worrying about who is tracking you (OK, so Google might track you, but that’s not us!)

Terms of service: the legal stuff

By using our site you agree to our Terms of service. TLDR: You don't need an account to use our site. Our site is free of charge and you can use it as much as you want. You need an account if you wish to list your business or control your business information. You can't do illegal or shady things with a business listing on our site. We may block your access to your page(s), if we find out you're doing something bad. Share anything you see, but don’t use our stuff for your own use without permission from us. We’re not liable for your actions and we offer no warranty. We may revise our terms at any time.