John Bozeman did a lot in his short life—and left a legacy that carries his name today.
He was just 25 when he hit the Montana gold fields in 1862. Mining didn’t pan out, so he and a friend blazed a shortcut into the territory that was named after him—the Bozeman Trail. He also founded a town by that name. In 1863, he was one of the founders of the Montana Vigilantes.
In 1867, he was killed while traveling along the Yellowstone River. Fellow vigilante Tom Cover, who was with Bozeman, was suspected but never charged.