Remembering the Jordan Buck

Remembering the Jordan Buck
Remembering the Jordan Buck

MISSOULA, Mont. - Ninety-nine deer seasons have passed since James Jordan pulled the trigger on a gargantuan whitetail that would become one of the best-known trophies of all time - and still stands as the biggest typical buck ever taken in the U.S. With the 100th Anniversary coming up in November, the Boone and Crockett Club is pausing to remember a tale that remains the stuff of legends.

"You know a deer hunt has reached legendary status when the local community plans a centennial celebration," said Keith Balfourd, marketing director for the Club.

Burnett County, Wis., is hosting the Jordan Buck Centennial Extravaganza. Festivities include a walking tour of the hunt area, art project and raffles for a Jordan Buck replica mount and a .25-20 lever-action rifle like the one carried on the historic hunt.

Balfourd said, "The popularity of hunting in North America, and the institutions of sustainable use conservation that hunting supports, rest on the shoulders of the whitetail deer. The Boone and Crockett Club is proud to help celebrate the history, legacy and significance of this deer as well as the man who brought it to the attention of hunters and conservationists around the world."


The Jordan Buck tale at a glance:


1914 - Nov. 20, Jordan, 22, hunts with a friend along the Yellow River near Danbury, Wis. Jordan kills a doe. His friend agrees to drag the doe home while Jordan continues the hunt. Jordan tracks a deer into a patch of high grass near a railroad. An approaching train flushes a big buck. Jordan fires, follows the wounded animal and finally drops it as it crosses to the opposite side of the river. Amazed locals estimate the buck's weight at close to 400 pounds. A local taxidermist offers to mount the head for $5. Jordan agrees. Later he discovers the taxidermist has moved away leaving no trace of his trophy.

1964 - In a strange twist a half-century later, a distant relative of Jordan's buys a massive but crude deer mount at a rummage sale in Sandstone, Minn., for $3. Jordan is certain it's his long-lost buck. The new owner requests an official scoring by Boone and Crockett. The Club scores the antlers at 206-5/8 and confirms it as the new World's Record typical whitetail but, unable to verify Jordan's story, lists the hunter as unknown and the hunt area as Sandstone, Minn.

1968 - The rack is sold to an antler collector in New Hampshire for $1,500. The trophy is remounted with a new cape.

1977 - Following outdoor writer Ron Schara's story about the buck in the Minneapolis Star Tribune, the Boone and Crockett Club re-opens investigation into Jordan's claim.


1978 - Boone and Crockett officials confirm the story and officially recognize Jordan as the hunter and Burnett County, Wis., as the location taken. Sadly, Jordan had passed away two months earlier.

1993 - After 29 years at the top of Boone and Crockett records, the Jordan Buck is overtaken by Milo Hanson's 213-5/8 buck from western Saskatchewan, Canada.

2001 - Bass Pro Shops acquires the Jordan Buck mount for an undisclosed sum. The buck is now part of a touring collection of trophies and seen annually by thousands of sportsmen.


2013 - Through the 99 deer seasons from 1914 through 2013, Wisconsin produced 1,057 typical whitetails in Boone and Crockett records - 324 more than second-place Illinois.

2014 - 100th Anniversary of Jordan's landmark buck.

"When we deer hunters dream whitetail, we dream big, typical five-by-fives. That's the most common and sought after antler configuration for the species. The Jordan Buck certainly exceeds that which dreams are made of," Balfourd concluded.

Click here to read the entire story of the Jordan Buck.

Jordan Buck Key Measurements:

53-7/8 inches of mass/circumference

30-inch mainbeams on both sides

G1-G4 measurements: 7, 13, 10 and 7 inches

Only 3-2/8 inches in symmetry deductions

About the Boone and Crockett Club

North America's first hunting and conservation organization, the Boone and Crockett Club was founded by Theodore Roosevelt in 1887. Its mission is to promote the conservation and management of wildlife, especially big game and its habitat, to preserve and encourage hunting and to maintain the highest ethical standards of fair chase and sportsmanship. Join us at www.boone-crockett.org.

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

Minn Kota Raptor

Minn Kota Raptor

Associate Brand Manager Adam Knowles, from Minn Kota, talks with Rob Neuman from In-Fisherman, about the all-new Raptor shallow water anchor.

Tactacam Fish-I Action Camera

Tactacam Fish-I Action Camera

Tactacam founder Ben Stern highlights the features of the Fish-I action camera with In-Fisherman associate publisher Todd Ceisner as part of the ICAST New Fishing Gear Guide.

Daiwa Dark Water Rods

Daiwa Dark Water Rods

From barracuda to wahoo to kingfish to sailfish and beyond, these new Daiwa saltwater rods rely on HVG technology (that makes them 50% lighter), soft tips to protect leaders as big fish make strong runs, and strong backbones to help anglers crank up hard-fighting species from below.

Tackle Test 2020: Lew

Tackle Test 2020: Lew's Pro-Ti Speed Stick

Tackle Test 2020: Lew's Pro-Ti Speed Stick

See More Popular Videos

Trending Articles

If you haven't looked at the smaller urban lakes in your area, you are missing out on some great bass pond fishing. Bass

Bass Pond Fishing: Catch Lunkers at Small Lakes Near You

Dan Anderson

If you haven't looked at the smaller urban lakes in your area, you are missing out on some...

When it comes to fishing baits, you won't find a more unusual variety than the strange brews of smelly ingredients often used to catch catfish. Catfish

How To Make Your Own Catfish Dough Bait

Keith Sutton - August 04, 2015

When it comes to fishing baits, you won't find a more unusual variety than the strange brews...

Reece was a five-time winner of the Federal Duck Stamp art competition. News

Duck Stamp Legend Maynard Reece Passes at 100

Lynn Burkhead - July 17, 2020

Reece was a five-time winner of the Federal Duck Stamp art competition.

As most catfish anglers know, blue cats, channel cats and flatheads will eat darn near anything that fits in their mouths. Catfish

5 Ways To Catch Catfish on Lures

Keith Sutton - September 16, 2015

As most catfish anglers know, blue cats, channel cats and flatheads will eat darn near...

See More Trending Articles

More Stories

Officers face a myriad of incidents in the field; these Texas Game Wardens stories range from the serious to the ridiculous. Stories

Bodycam Footage Exposes Naked Hunter: Game Warden Stories

Game & Fish Online Staff - November 28, 2017

Officers face a myriad of incidents in the field; these Texas Game Wardens stories range from...

Could the northern stretches of the Lone Star State one day rival the south for big-buck supremacy? Whitetail

The Next ‘Big Tex' for Trophy Bucks?

Jordan Michaels - October 18, 2019

Could the northern stretches of the Lone Star State one day rival the south for big-buck...

We Coyote hunters spend a lot of time ringing the dog's dinner bell when we call. But we are Stories

Call Our Complex Coyotes

Brad Fitzpatrick - July 13, 2017

We Coyote hunters spend a lot of time ringing the dog's dinner bell when we call. But we are

Once considered a denizen of the Western wilds, the coyote has learned to adapt to human Stories

Coyotes In Suburbia

Stephen D. Carpenteri - November 30, 2016

Once considered a denizen of the Western wilds, the coyote has learned to adapt to human

See More Stories

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Get Digital Access.

All Game & Fish subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

To get started, click the link below to visit mymagnow.com and learn how to access your digital magazine.

Get Digital Access

Not a Subscriber?
Subscribe Now