Time Line


Time Line





1903 Nov 21 William "Marvin" Fenn born in Bell, TX  (Forrest's father)
1908 Mar 20 Lillie Gay Simpson born  (Forrest's mother)
1926   William Fenn and Lillie Gay married (Forrest's parents)
1928 July 25 William Marvin "Skippy" Fenn Jr  born (Forrest's bother)
1930 Aug 22 Forrest Burke Fenn born in Temple Texas
1930 - 37   Forrest and family would spend summers in Yellowstone Park, stayed at Fishing Bridge.
1932 June 24 June Fenn born (Forrest's sister)
1932 Nov 16 Peggy Jean Proctor born (Forrest's wife)
1937 - 50   Forrest and family spent summers in West Yellowstone, after a few years his parents rented cabins there.
1939   Forrest finds his first arrow head in Temple, TX with his father.
1943 - 44   Forrest was a professional fishing guide while they were living in West Yellowstone
1945   Spent a few weeks working in Atlanta, Ga for his dad's friend, Forrest Levy
1945   Bought his first car, a 1935 Plymouth Tudor in Atlanta, GA for $250.00.
1946   Got lost with Donny in Red Canyon looking for Lewis and Clark
1947   Forrest graduated from Temple High School
1948 -59   Forrest attended Temple Junior College
1950 Sept 6 Joined the United States Airforce USAF
1950 Sept 18 Peggy Jean Proctor attended the University of Texas
1950 - 51   Radar Mechanic School, Keesler AFB, Biloxi, MS
1951 Aug 9 June Fenn (Forrest's sister) marries Donald Joseph "Donnie Joe" Heath (Forrest's best friend)  at Gallatin, MT)
1951 - 53   Stationed at Donaldson AFB, Greenville, SC
1953   Pilot training (Class 53G) at Bainbridge Air Base in GA & Laredo, TX
1953   Graduated from pilot training
1953 Mar 21 Forrest's grandfather C.K. Simpson (Mother's Father) died in Fort Worth, TX
1953 - 54   85th Fighter Interceptor Squadron, Scott AFB, IL
1953 Dec 27 Marries Peggy Jean Proctor
1955   Aide-de-camp to M/G Frank H. Robinson, Randolph AFB, TX
1956 July 13 Covered Philadelphia with his thumb “The Philadelphia Caper” 
1957   23rd Fighter Day Squadron/23rd Fighter Bomber Squadron, Bitburg, Germany
1958   Was stationed in Tripoli, Libya and flew with Robin Olds.
1959 July 14 Daughter Zoe is born
1959 Aug 17 Hebgen Lake (7.2) earthquake near West Yellowstone, 28+ dead. Formed Quake Lake.
1960 - 64   4511th ‘Combat Crew Training Squadron/4515th Combat Crew Training Squadron, Luke AFB, AZ
1960 Aug 8 Daughter Kelly is born
1962   Forrest's grandmother Arrie Beatrice Crayton Simpson (Mother's Mother) died.
1962   Partners with Skippy to help him build The Dude Motel in West Yellowstone
1962 Oct Forrest kill's large mountain lion while at Luke AFB in Arizona
1964 - 70 July T-38 Instructor Pilot, Reese AFB, Lubbock, TX  (Move to Lubbock)
1965   Forrest won the turquoise bracelet from Byron Harvey (heir of Fred Harvey) playing pool
1965   Forrest obtained an indian wax mold and became interested in bronze casting, tried his first casting in his garage.
1967   Forrest received a gift from George Dabich (5-inch long knife he’d carved from a mountain sheep bone from Mommy Joe Cave).
1967 May Forrest moved from director of officer training to base operations officer (Reese AFB)
1968 Jan Began his tour of duty in Vietnam
1968 Jan 18 Forrest made his first flight during the Vietnam War
1968   Crash landed on a small airstrip in south Vietnam and walked away.
1968 Dec 20 Shot down in Loas, parachuted into the jungle and rescued the next day by helicopter
1968 Dec 24 Returned home to Lubbock / Reese AFB
1969 - 72   Makes bronze statues first at home in the garage and then later opened Fenn Bronze Foundry.
1970 Apr 3 Announced that he was due for a promotion from Major to Lieutenant Colonel
1970 Sept 6 Turned down a promotion to Lieutenant Colonel and retired from airforce.
1970 Nov 28 He displayed several of his bronze statues and paintings at an Art exhibit in Abilene, TX
1971   Forrest is member of the board of directors of the Panhandle - Plains Museum at West Texas University.
1971 Sept 26 Gave a lecture at the Lubbock art association, demostrating how to cast bronze.
1971 Dec 12 Official opening of Fenn Bronze  Art Foundry & Gallery of Western Art at his foundry in Lubbock, TX
1972 Summer Forrest, Peggy and two daughters moved from Lubbock, TX to Santa Fe, NM
1972 Nov 25 Opened " Arrowsmith - Fenn Galleries" with partner Rex Arrowsmith in Santa Fe, NM
1973   Bought out Rex Arrowsmith and became sole owner of "Fenn Gallery".
1974 Oct 10  Forrest went to Russia to make arrangements for burial of Nicolai Fechin's ashes.
1975   Forrest accumulated over 4.5 million in inventory at his gallery, the majority that he owned outright.
1975   Becomes best friends with Eric Sloan
1976 Feb 2 Famous portrait of Washington was on exhibit at Fenn Galleries for a couple weeks.
1978   William Marvin "Skippy" Fenn Jr  dies,  drowned while scuba diving in Cazumel, Mexico
1979 Feb 1 Olga Svoboda died  (he spread he ashes from his plane)
1979   Hid Daughter Zoe attends Colorado State College at Greeley.
1979 Oct Lillie Gay Simpson Fenn dies (Forrest's mother)
1980   Forrest won as best publisher at the Western Heritage Awards for his publishing of "Sacred Paint: Ned Jacob" written by Sandra Dallas.
1980 July 1 Forrest publishes his first book, The African Animals of William R. Leigh
1981 - 92   He partnered with Mike Hall (real estate broker) started Hall & Fenn Real Estate
1983   Forrest made over 20 million in 10 years owning his gallery. First time noted he was thinking of selling.
1983 June 1 Published The Beat of the Drum and the Whoop of the Dance: Study of the Life and Work of Joseph Henry Sharp
1984 Apr 22 Forrest won best art book for "Beat of the Drum and the Whoop of the Dance" at the Western Heritage Awards, The National Cowboy Hall of Fame in Oklahoma City 
1984 June 2 Jackie Kennedy stayed at his Gallery
1985   Forrest located and purchased the Sharp Cabin and donated to Buffalo Bill Historical Center in Cody, WY
1985 Mar 5 Eric Sloan died in NYC
1986   Forrest purchases the San Lazaro Pueblo in the Galisteo Basin, NM and begins excavating shortly after.
1987 Feb 8 William "Marvin" Fenn dies, committed suicide took a lot of pills was dying of cancer
1988 Jan 5 Forrest sold Fenn Galleries to Nedra Matteucci
1988   Forrest is diagnosed with terminal cancer in the kidney and given a 20% chance to live 3 years.
1988   Forrest comes up with the plan to "take it with him" and purchases the treasure chest.
1990 Apr 10 NM state agent claims to have seen Forrest diging human bones while excavating at San Lazaro Pueblo
1990   Forrest sues NM bc they searched his property and seizured artificats without a warrant and violated his constitutional rights.
1991   NM State Office of Cultural Affairs counter sued Forrest for disregarding state law, response to Forrest's lawsuit.
1991 Mar 13 Forrest and state settle lawsuit, both sides agreed to walk away.
1994   Dr. James Hanson wrote "Spirits in the Art from the Plains and Southwest Indian Cultures, displayed much of Forrest's private collection
1996 Feb 12 Donald Joseph "Donnie Joe" Heath dies
1999 Oct 29 Forrest helped organize the "Clovis and Beyond" achaeology conference held in Santa Fe.
2001   Published The Genius of Nicolai Fechin: Recollections by Forrest Fenn
2002 Oct 26 Sold his Piper Malibu Mirage 350HP airplane for 700K to Jeffrey Lane (believed to stop flying or some time shortly after.)
2002 Nov 8 June Fenn Heath (Forrest's sister) dies
2003 - 08   Member of The Board of Trustees at The Buffalo Bill Center of the West in Cody, WY. 
2004 Jan 31 Published The Secrets of San Lazaro Pueblo by Forrest Fenn
2005 Jan 24 Forrest published High Plains Paleo (with Mark Mullins)
2005 Mar 31 Forrest published Western Clovis (with Mark Mullins)
2005 Mar 31 Forrest published Early American Indian Dolls (with Mark Mullins)
2006   Investigation into Forrest was started, (unknown to him) about possible illegal sale and/or possession of Indian artifacts.
2006 Oct 17 Forrest recorded posterity video at Buffalo Bill Historical Center in Cody, WY
2007   Forrest published Teepee Smoke - A New Look Into the Life and Work of Joseph Henry Sharp
2007   Forrest published Historic American Indian Dolls and the children who played with them
2007   Forrest published Seventeen Dollars a Square Inch: a personal tribute to Eric Sloane
2009 June 10 Home was raided by FBI, BLM and Fish and wildlife dept looking for sale or illegal possession of Indian artifacts.
2009 Sept 25 Recorded video at Buffalo Bill Historical Center in Cody, WY about Joseph Henry Sharp.
2010 Aug Douglas Preston confirms the treasure chest is no longer in Forrest's valut (noted this in forward he wrote for Once Upon A While 2017)
2010 Oct 25 Release of the book The Thrill of the Chase and first book signing at the Collected Works Bookstore.
2013   Forrest published Too Far to Walk  (Second Memoir)
2017   Forrest published Once Upon a While: A Third Memoir by Forrest Fenn