Yellowstone Renames Mount Doane, Now First Peoples Mountain

Yellowstone National Park’s Mount Doane is now First Peoples Mountain. According to the National Park Service, the announcement comes after a 15-0 vote affirming the change by the U.S. Board on Geographic Names. 

First Peoples Mountain is a 10,551-foot peak east of Yellowstone Lake in the southeastern part of the park. It was previously named after Gustavus Doane, a key member of the Washburn-Langford-Doane expedition in 1870, just prior to Yellowstone becoming a national park.

Photo courtesy Jacob W. Frank/National Park Service

“Research has shown that earlier that same year, Doane led an attack, in response to the alleged murder of a white fur trader, on a band of Piegan Blackfeet,” NPS wrote. “During what is now known as the Marias Massacre, at least 173 American Indians were killed, including many women, elderly Tribal members and children suffering from smallpox. Doane wrote fondly about this attack and bragged about it for the rest of his life.”

The name change was recommended by the Rocky Mountain Tribal Council and was also voted on by the Wyoming Board of Geographic Names prior to the federal board’s affirmative decision. 

This year, Yellowstone is celebrating its 150th anniversary as a national park, the country’s first. The Park Service stated that Yellowstone “may consider changes to other derogatory or inappropriate names in the future.”