The Stenberg Family is somewhat unique in that they can trace their lineage as being stockmen as far back as research is able to go.
In the 1880’s a young Henry Stenberg was disenchanted with his potential future by staying in Norway. Norway had breathtaking mountains but no opportunity for a young man with gumption. The lure of adventure and opportunity in America was too much to resist and the young 16 year old Norwegian made his way to Big Timber, Montana with 30 dollars in his pocket. Henry soon was hired to haul logs out of the Crazy Mountains by bobsled. Henry was well known for his ability with horses which resulted in endless stories at his funeral at age 94 in 1968. One told and retold story was when Henry went out by himself with a team of Belgian geldings named Prince and Ned. When supper time came, Henry was a no show. Two of his sons Joe and Harry went looking for their dad. They found Henry in the middle of a wheat field under a pickup sized rock, literally under the huge rock. Henry had hooked several chains together around the rock and had his team of horses hold the rock in place without moving all day long while he dug a huge hole under the rock. When his sons showed up he was almost done and after a little bit more shoveling he told the team to back up and they lowered the huge rock about 6 ft down which would now be below plow depth virtually making the rock disappear. How many of today’s so called horse whisperers could train and handle a team of horses to “stay in the collar” all day long without moving with constant forward pleasure, controlled only by voice commands from a hole in the ground behind a huge rock on the prairie.
Henry’s third son Joe married Julia Rose in 1939 and started the J bar Stenberg. Joe was a legendary stockman and could handle a herd or spot a problem from across a pasture. He had a special gift with livestock that may never be duplicated. The Stenberg Family still tell stories about Joe’s abilities even today. He passed in 1989. Joe was a true son of a Pioneer and was a very hard and rugged man while still being gentle with a little child. Joe and Julia were part of the greatest generation and said what was on their mind. A favorite response of Joes when he seen a city person come to the country only to complain or cause friction or a similar situation, he would say, “they haven’t earned the right. “ Joe and Julia share a sheep headstone because of their shared love of sheep ranching.
Joe’s youngest son Jerome married Kathy “Blonde” in 1976 and brought registered Angus to the registered Charolais operation. Sheep remained a large part of the operation as they do today.
The next generations were Jerome and Blonde three children Joseph and wife Sara, Jarrod and wife Bonnie and Jade their adopted China Doll.
Joseph and Sara have three little ones, Jozie, Jory, and Jace. Joseph concentrates on his purebred Corriedale sheep which allows more time for his love of trucks and equipment.
Jarrod and Bonnie with Jarrod “Junior”, Jozlynn “Sissy” and Jordan have only one love!!! Traditional Ranching and are very involved in all things ranching.
That makes five generations of Stockmen in America. When we research and also rely on the stories told in the past by Henry about the Stenberg Family in Norway, we know that for many generations in Norway the Stenberg’s have been a livestock family and most likely a family with an unbroken linage of Stockmen.