Bill Rundell, Denver MS, Spends One Year on a Montana Reservation and Helps...
The Blackfeet Build
By ROBERT PARKER /Editor
The two-story office and factory sits on the edge of town amid Ml grass, rutted roads, and the stark beginnings of an industrial park. A saw-toothed mountain range looms through the haze like the intangible dream that sustains the people of Browning, Montana.
Who are these people, and what is their dream?
In the office of BIDI, the roster of employees begins the story. It includes names like: Edward Conway, Dale Salois, Frank Harrison, Jr., Joe Crawford, Merle Trombley . . .
And: Francis Bull Calf, Aaron Shootsfirst, Clarence White Grass, Irvin Spotted Eagle, Galen Arrowtop .. .
The story of BIDI (Blackfeet Indian Developers, Inc.), like that of Montana, is the story of red men and white men struggling to earn a living from the northern plains. From the white trappers' invasion of the early 1800s, to the decline of the buffalo and the rise of Indian reserva-tions at the end of the century, and to the Federal pro-grams of today — it is a story at times of conflict, at times of cooperation.
Despite the protestations of the American Indian Move-ment, the decade of the 7D's shows some evidence of be-