Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Mettle of Granite County Book One Chapter Two

Table of Contents 

Titus, McKenzie, Harrington……………………………….11-13 Stephens…………………………………………………….13-14 Shodair………………………………………………………14-16 Politics………………………………………………………17-25
G.W. Morse.............................................................................18-23
Ringling…………………………………………………….25-26 Ballard………………………………………………………26-28 Endnotes…………………………………………………..

 Chapter Two (Part One) More influential Pioneers and Politicians

 Kaiser Family 

 The Kaiser family was another group of individuals, deeply involved in the settlement of what is now Granite County. Not only were they involved in the settlement of Philipsburg, but also homesteaded on the Ross’ Fork of Rock Creek. Therefore, I will discuss different aspects of the family in both Book I and Book II. 

Melchior Kaiser, known as Michael in Montana, was born December 21, 1827, in Switzerland, coming to the United States and St. Louis, Mo., in 1846. Prior to leaving his native country, he was trained as a shoemaker and set up a trade in St. Louis. Michael married Louisa Wagoner (Wagner) in 1850, and then moved to California in 1852. He worked in the market business in San Francisco and Marysville, California. They moved to Virginia City, Nevada in 1860, where he had a butcher shop, grocery and supply store. Moving with their children, John and Herman, to Helena, Montana, in March of 1866, he built the Planter Hotel. In 1867, they moved to Cable and built the International Hotel, which he ran until 1878. Next, the family moved to Philipsburg and built the Kaiser Hotel in 1881, on the corner of Montgomery and Broadway and in 1888, the Kaiser House Annex on North Montgomery. 

The New Northwest, in 1881, stated: 
The enterprising people of Philipsburg, with an unmistaken confidence in the future, are building costly houses, both public and private. The new three story brick hotel, to replace the frame structure long and favorably known as the Kaiser House, is nearly ready for the roof (1).
 The name Kaiser is listed as one of the first Alderman for the City of Philipsburg, and that same year research showed where: 
The Kaiser brothers have been so busy superintending the work on the new water system of late that they have been obliged to delay proceedings on the proposed resumption of operations on the East Granite; but they expect it will be carried on as soon as the water plant is completed and they can devote time to starting it the right way (2).
 Michael and his son John Kaiser developed and operated the Philipsburg Water Company. The company built a major pipe system to obtain water to the growing community. This system was described in the Citizen Call
 The water from the South Fork of Boulder is conducted a distance of two and one half miles over the divide, through a series of heavy pressure pipes and flumes, the pipes being a distance of 8,000 and the flumes for a distance of nearly 10,000 feet, the two lines laying in the form of a Y, bearing from different heads and emptying into one receiving tank. The water is then conducted by flume from this receiving tank and emptied in the water of Stuart Gulch. From the head of Stuart Gulch the water is conducted through flumes and pipes a distance of three and three fourths miles to a large reservoir located one and one fourth miles north of Philipsburg. This reservoir is eighty feet long, thirty feet wide and twelve feet deep and holds 149,000 gallons. From the reservoir the water is conducted through iron mains to the city of Philipsburg, a distance of one and one fourth miles. This reservoir is located at an elevation of 357 feet above the corner of Montgomery and Broadway, indicating a pressure at that point of 165 pounds to the square inch.….The Water Works system was constructed at a cost of $55,000.…The owners of this system operate under a franchise granted by the city of Philipsburg and have contracted to furnish water for a period of ten years at the rate of $100 and 112.50 per hydrant per year (3). 
 Of interest in the above paragraph, is the gulch referred to as Stuart Gulch. Recent maps etc. spell it Stewart. I have long been of the belief that both the gulch and lake were originally named after James Stuart, and should be spelled Stuart, which this reference seems to substantiate. 
The Water Company held stock holder meetings and elected directors to fill offices. One of the major votes for the stock holders in 1896 was to vote on whether the Kaiser Company would sell out to the Philipsburg Water Company. At that time Herman Kaiser was president and J.W. Suppinger was secretary. Obviously, the stock holders did not vote to sell the franchise, as the company continued ownership into the early 1900’s (4). 

Taxes for M. Kaiser, in 1896 were: $418.90 and taxes for the M. and J.K. Water Company were: $229.00. Research found where the M & J. Kaiser Water Co. was ordered by the City Council to remove all private street and alley hydrants. This would necessitate private consumers putting hydrants in their homes or yards. They had to be out of the way by the first day of May. Work was to be done at consumer‘s expense. The charges for M & J K Water Company, water for the court house and jail for the preceding quarter was $57.75. The paper also published a notice to water consumers that water would be shut off from California St. main due to a break at the intersection of California and Broadway.

In June 1895, the City of Philipsburg, Board of Aldermen approved bills for M & J K Water Co. for $140.62 and M. Kaiser for $5.00 (5). Maintenance of the system was frequently cited with the last notice in 1901 stating: 
The M and J. Kaiser Water Co., has engaged a crew of men for next Sunday to clean the reservoir. While this work is in progress the entire water supply of the city will be shut off. It is expected that the work will be finished Sunday afternoon. There will be no water in the pipes during Sunday and consumers have been notified to draw a reserve supply Saturday night (6).
 Shortly after, the City bought them out and began operating their own water system, but I was unable to determine the exact date. Documentation of the scarcity of water in the region was revealed as early as 1904, with a shortage of water in the summer. There were circulars out notifying water consumers a fine would be imposed on anyone using water for sprinkling purposes or any unnecessary waste. A reward of $5.00 was offered for evidence that would lead to the conviction of any person wasting or using for sprinkling purposes, water from any of the service pipes of the city of Philipsburg signed by Alderman, D.S. McLeod, chairman of the water committee (7). 
n 1937, Philipsburg was having even more severe water shortages and due to the fear of the Stewart Lake (Stuart) drying up, Mayor R.D. Metcalf and the City Council decided to put a bond issue for the sum of $68,000.00 in front of the voters on May 15, 1937. Mitchell and Yob, both spoken of in depth in Book II, had agreed to deed their water rights in the Fred Burr Lake District, together with the right of way for all pipe lines and necessary structures wherever their land involved the city. But had only agreed to hold the offer open until July 1, 1937 (8). The water rights were a great asset as they had been determined to belong to The Philipsburg Mining Company by a Supreme Court decision. This water system continues to provide Philipsburg water. 

The Patriarch of the family, Michael Kaiser died at the age of seventy six years one month and eight days, on January 29, 1903, in St Patrick’s Hospital, in Missoula from a bowel obstruction. He was ill several weeks, when son John took him to the hospital on January 17. All was done that could be for him and by the end of the week, his younger son, Herman and Mrs. John Kaiser had went to Missoula to be with him. The body was brought home on the evening train, January 29, with the funeral taking place from the Kaiser House Annex, on February 1, 1903 (9).

Michael’s, death was followed before the year ended, by Louisa, at the age of seventy seven years, six months and eleven days, on November 28, 1903. She succumbed to an intestinal stigmatism and heart failure. Louisa had been in poor health for some time and declined rapidly after Michael died. Her obituary stated she lived in Philipsburg continually, since 1873. I do not know if she lived in Philipsburg while Michael operated the Hotel in Cable or if the seventy three was a misprint and should have been seventy eight. Her son’s, John and Herman and their families were at her bedside when she died. The funeral was at the Kaiser House Annex, on November 30, with pallbearers: A.A. McDonald, James McDonel, G.V. Sherman, Conrad Wipf, Thomas Long, and L.C. Degenhart (10). They are buried beside each other in the Philipsburg cemetery. 

John and Herman, with the supervision of their father, as related above, built the Kaiser House Hotel in Philipsburg in 1878 and the family operated it as a Hotel for many years. In an article about Wilma Applegate Bruns with her collection of pictures and memorabilia, in the 1970’s is a description of the Kaiser House: “Bill of Fare from the late 1800‘s. Such foods as “top sirloin steak for 50 cents, ham and eggs for 35 cents, pork chops, mutton chops, pigs feet (plain or breaded) veal chops and others all at comparable prices” (111). Fan Harrington, another Philipsburg historian, while discussing the early history of Philipsburg, described how Mr. Kaiser used to sit in front of his hotel and say “This is the Kaiser house and I am the Kaiser” (12) .

When the Hotel closed it was occupied by the Selish Tribe No. 14 of the Fraternal Order of Red Men and then sold to the V.F.W. in the 1950’s. It is currently The Philipsburg Trading Company. Kaiser’s also had a saloon (location not known), that they wished to build an addition to, but after reviewing “Ordinances No. 42 and 48, relating to the fire limits (the Board of Aldermen)…decided that the request could not be granted.” (13) 
Next, research found: 
The Kaiser Brothers and Charles Williams, who own some valuable mining property on the northern slope of Red Hill, just north of the Hope Company’s ground, this week resumed work by putting several men to work in their tunnel. A new blacksmith shop has been built and other equipment installed, which would indicate that extensive development of the property is contemplated. They have a vast body of iron ore carrying from 3 to 8 percent of copper and some silver values. It is one of the best properties in the Flint District, and according to the theory of experts, has every indication of developing into a great mine. The property is situated about two miles from Philipsburg.
 As is so often the case with mining theories, it must not have developed into a great mine. John Kaiser, born on August 18, 1857, in Marysville, California came to Philipsburg in 1869. I found a record of him being registered to vote in Granite County at the age of thirty seven, on April 28, 1894. In 1889, he went to Highland, Illinois where he married Miss Jennie Suppiger on November 20, and to this marriage was born: Robert in 1890, John Walter on July 22, 1892, in Philipsburg, Edward March 10, 1894, Mary in 1895, Jenny in 1897, and Harold on April 30, 1907. 

His obituary stated erroneously, that in 1904, they homesteaded the ranch on Kaiser Hill, looking down on the Ross Fork of Rock Creek. The homestead is described in detail in Book II. As early as 1895, I found reference to the Kaiser Ranch. Research showed taxes for the year of 1904, for Herman and John Kaiser were $407.70 (14). 

John’s obituary stated he was elected for two terms as County Commissioner. In 1916, he won by a plurality of three as a Democrat against J.D. Kennedy the Republican. I also found where as County Commissioner, he was out with the road crew to supervise the road work in Trail Gulch, where numerous automobiles got stuck in a mud hole on the way to Rock Creek. Another bad spot in the road was near the Miller ranch, and was also receiving attention, so the road to Rock Creek would be in pretty good shape by the end of the week (15) But research did not reveal that he was elected for another term. Assuming that the 1916, election was for a 6 year term, he would have run again, in 1922, which he did not. 

I did find in 1925, where he was authorized to inspect and receive lumber for the West Fork Bridge, by the County Commissioners. His obituary stated he retired from public life in 1930. John belonged to the Flint Creek Lodge No. 11 A.F. & A.M.; Hope Chapter of the Royal Arch Masons; Pearl Chapter of the Eastern Star and the Woodsmen of the World. He was also a member of the Philipsburg Band. 

John died at the family home after a lingering illness on June 12, 1934 and his funeral was conducted on June 14, with Pallbearers being: His four sons: Robert, J. Walter, Edward and Harold and his two son-in-laws Frank Conley and Theodore Saurer (16). His brother Herman was residing in San Diego, California at the time of John’s death.

I found where Mr. and Mrs. Herman Kaiser’s eldest son Clifford, was ill with typhoid fever. The young man was taken down about two weeks ago. His fever is quite high at times but he is holding his own and is expected to recover rapidly after the disease has run its course, which usually is from three to four weeks. This is the first case of Typhoid Fever reported in Philipsburg in several years (17).
There were no other articles about his illness and there is no record of his burial in the Philipsburg cemetery. Research also identified news articles where: 
Herman Kaiser at one time had a company partly organized to operate placer mines in Stony Creek and located about forty claims along its course. The project at that time called for a drain tunnel by means of which the water was to be drawn from bedrock so that shafts could be sunk and mining carried on by means of drifting along bedrock. The tunnel was to start at a low point north of the Wyman place and pointing south, cut through the hogback or ridge extending down to the Wyman house, and into the channel of Stony Creek. For one reason or other the project was abandoned, principally on account of shortage of funds (18).
 Herman was registered to vote on April 28, 1894, and his age is listed as thirty three, with the statement: Born in California, according to the Granite County Voting records. 

Jennie the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. John Kaiser and Ted, the son of Mr. and Mrs. Rome Saurer, were married at the Manse of the First Presbyterian Church in Butte, by the Rev. E.J. Groeneveld on December 17, 1919. The witnesses were C.E. Metcalf and his wife Pauline, sister of the groom. Attending the wedding shower were Misses: Margaret McKenzie, Gay and Estelle Neu, Ruth Carmichael, Edna Stephens, Matilda Saurer, Pauline Johnston and Carrie McLeod; Mesdames: Harry Herron, John Schuh, Cleve Metcalf, Frank Conley, Ralph Williams, and Herman Lindstadt, plus the hostesses and the honored guest (19). 

Ted was born in 1897 and was a leaser at the Granite Mine. He died in 1953. Jenny died in 1994. They are both buried in the Philipsburg cemetery. Ted’s father, Romedius Saurer, born in Insbruk, Tyrol, on January 11, 1864, came to Philipsburg in the early 1890’s. He followed the occupation of prospector and miner, until his health failed and he sought a lower climate. He died in Portland, Oregon, on April 8, 1925. The body was returned to Philipsburg, where the funeral was held from the family home, on April 11, and he was interred in the Philipsburg cemetery. He was an active member of the Selish Tribe, No. 14, of the I.O.R.M. and Philipsburg Lodge No. 12, O.d.H.S. Survivors were, his wife, plus three daughters: Mrs. Chester Rose (This should be Ross), Mrs. C. A. (Pauline) Metcalf, and Miss Matilda Saurer and three sons: Louis of Portland, Theodore and Edwin of Philipsburg (20). 

In 1927, I found the marriage announcement of Mrs. Rome Saurer, to Mr. Karl Long of Arthur, Nebraska on June 30, in the Lutheran Church in Ogalla, Kansas. She moved, about a year earlier to make her home with her daughter Mrs. Chester Ross. Of interest is the announcement never used her first name, only her widowed name. In Pauline Sauer Metcalf's obituary (Book II) she is referred to as Mrs. Sorg, so she was remarried at least twice after Rome died. Ted Sauer family descendants continue to live in Philipsburg.

Jennie’s sister, Mary Kaiser, while training to be a nurse in Butte, married Frank Conley, August 7, 1918, at the Presbyterian Manse, with Reverend E.L. Moore officiating. The ceremony took place while Frank was home on leave from the Navy. Frank was born March 22, 1895, the son of Mrs. Clara Johnson of Granite. He died on October 29, 1975, after their fifty seventh year of marriage. Mary died in 1987. They are both buried in the Philipsburg cemetery (21). 

Concerning the Kaiser brothers: Harold married Margaret (unknown maiden name) and died September 2, 1998. Robert married Rebecca Hess Sandin in 1948 and died in 1982, they are discussed more in the Amerine chapter, in Book II. 

In 1939, the Goody Shop was being operated by a Mrs. H. Kaiser, but I am not certain if this was Harold’s wife, Margaret. John Walter, known as Walt, was married to Irene McDonald October 2, 1937, in Thompson Falls “at a quiet …ceremony performed by Rev. A.C. Rostron, a former Philipsburg Pastor” (22). Irene was the daughter of the late Mr. and Mrs. John J. McDonald and after graduating from Granite County High School, attended Montana State Normal School, and then taught in the Philipsburg Schools. At the time of their marriage, 

Walt was associated with E.M. Poese, at the Philipsburg Hardware Store. Walt was willing to take a chance, as I found where he played the father in the wedding scene, of the American Legion Follies, fashioned after the Ziegfield Follies, in 1928. Walt’s risk was less than the rest of the cast, though, as his part was one of the few where a male played a male. All of the female parts including chorus girls, flappers and bathing beauties were played by the town he-males (23). 

Walt and Irene were involved in many social activities, such as the Philipsburg Dancing Club, which was held on Saturday nights at the Firemen’s Hall. I have described Walt in more depth in Book II: The Sapphire Chapter, as Walt and Irene along with the Carpp’s were owners of the mines and the bungalow prior to my parent’s buying the bungalow. 

The other brother, Edward spent many of his years as a patriot. He was called into military service in the May 6, 1918 quota, which was entrained to Camp Lewis on May 25. 1918. He served in World War I (WWI), World War II (WWII) and Korea in the U.S. Navy. Edward worked many years for the State Highway Department and died April 15, 1977. His military headstone is located between lots two and three in the family plot of the Philipsburg cemetery. He is also discussed later in the Patriots Chapter. 

There was another Kaiser family that lived in Granite County, as I found where Henry P. Kaiser, died after one week duration of Spanish flu, that turned into pneumonia, on December 6, 1918. His obituary stated he was thirty five years of age; born in New York, on August 24, 1884 and survived by three brothers: T.P of Philipsburg, A.J. of Plentywood, Montana and Joseph of Fargo, North Dakota. He was shift boss, at the Beaver Creek Mine, for two years prior to his death. His funeral was held December 9, at Carmichaels Funeral Parlor and the pallbearers were: Charlie Hellibuck, Tony Vezina, Jack Polich, F.E. Meyers, Leo Frost and Howard Moore (24). His brother, T.P. known as Tony must have received the contract for pouring the cement sidewalks on Broadway, as his name was stamped in the sidewalk at numerous intersections around town, before the walks were replaced. 

Titus, McKenzie, Harrington

Fan (Frances) Harrington, spoken of in an earlier paragraph, was an important historian of the community and needs to be discussed. Born Frances Titus, in 1887, the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. F.H. Titus, she married Roderick McKenzie, in June 1909, according to the announcement of their engagement, by Mrs. J.R. McKenzie in the Philipsburg Mail, on February 28, 1909. Fan’s mother, Mrs. F.H. Titus, was responsible for opening a private school according to the Citizen Call, October 30, 1895, when the area was without a school for a short period of time. 

Roderick was the eldest son of Mr. and Mrs. John R. McKenzie. His first wife (Annie Parfitt) died in Canada on November 25, 1908. Roderick and Annie married in Butte, on July 19, 1905; had a baby girl Catherine and then moved to Marlboro Hill in Canada, where Rod found employment(25). He returned from Canada after Annie’s death and married Fan. Rod was employed as a railroad locomotive engineer, when he died in an accident near Frenchtown, ten miles west of Missoula, on June 9, 1910. Survivors were Fan and son Forrest John, who were living in Wallace at the time of the accident. His father, John R. McKenzie, claimed Rod’s body in Missoula and the remains were conveyed by train to Philipsburg, where the Mason’s took charge of the body and delivered it to the McKenzie home. The funeral took place on June 12. In 1914, Fan and her son Forrest John traveled with her mother, who was Mrs. J.B. Harris, at that time, to Rochester where Mrs. Harris entered the Mayo Hospital for two operations. They returned home on February 13 and Mrs. Harris, though weak was able to make the trip to the power house, the day after they returned, according to the Mail (26).

Fan later married Jesse Harrington and research revealed they had a fire in their home on June 26, 1929. The fire was discovered by Forest John when he returned home from town and saw smoke coming from a window. While the firemen were fighting the fire, a window was broken out on the other side of the building causing the built up gases to explode and the entire house and belongings were consumed. Fan was at the theatre watching the performance of Chautauqua and Jesse was at work at the Trout mill, about three blocks from their home, when the fire occurred. He called the telephone operator upon hearing the sirens and learned the fire was at his house. The home was insured for $1,600 and the loss was believed to be more than $4,000. They believed the fire was caused either by electric wiring or from an electric iron. Needless to say the town population came forward to assist the family in this loss of everything except the clothes on their backs (27). Jesse died in 1937 and is buried in the Philipsburg cemetery.

Sometime during or after this marriage, Fan began collecting pictures and history from the elders of the community. On October 7, 1939, she held a Picture Album party at her home. Many old timers recall her sitting for hours with one or more of their relatives writing down the stories as they were told. After serving as the librarian for many years, Fan died in 1961 (28).

Where all her history collection disappeared to is of great concern, to me. I had assumed that as she grew infirmed, the documents were conveyed to Wilma Applegate Bruns, who became a collector of old photographs and history, but her son Bill, stated that he never remembered anyone by the name of Fan and that everything his mother had, was given to the University of Montana. Multiple visits to the Mike Mansfield Research Library, has uncovered only about six pictures donated in the name of Wilma Bruns. One of Fan’s writings is quoted in the history of Jane O’Neil Hickey, discussed later in this chapter. I will continue to search for Fan’s collection, in the hopes that someone has it without realizing the importance. 

Fan’s son, Forrest John (Toasty) McKenzie, served in WWII and Korea and married Anna Mae Mason, daughter of William W. and Anna E. Schultz Mason of Hall, in 1946. William was the son of John T. Mason spoken of earlier in this book. They had three boys, with the twin of Dan, dying shortly after birth. The eldest son Rod currently flies an airplane for Paul Newman. Don owned and operated McKenzie Gem in Philipsburg. Anna Mae retired from her janitorial job at the new high school, after working there 19 years, and had worked 36 years at the post office. She died  at the Granite County Medical Center Nursing Home on January 22, 2013 (29).

John R. McKenzie was born in Scotland, one of nine children; seven sisters and one brother. The family immigrated to Canada in 1872 and he married Miss Mary Smith of Hampden, Quebec, Canada on December 3, 1878. To this marriage was born seven children. The family arrived in Philipsburg on November 1, 1891. John and Mary celebrated their Golden Wedding Anniversary, at their home in the western section of the city on December 3, 1928, with all the living children able to attend. 

John was seventy nine years and eight months when he died on February 5, 1931, at the family home. Survivors were: his wife, Mary; daughters: Mrs. George (Mary) Burks of Deer Lodge, Mrs. J.R. (Christine) Villars of Spokane, Mrs. Ray (Margaret) Alexander, of Portland; sons, John M. of New York, William H. of Helena, and Allen S. of Philipsburg. Preceding him in death was Roderick K., in 1910. The funeral was held at Merrill’s Mortuary and he was interred in the Philipsburg cemetery with pallbearers: M.C. Ross of Missoula, George M. McKenzie of Butte, Forrest J. McKenzie, Jess Harrington, Angus Murray and Henry Kruse of Philipsburg. 

Research reveals the marriage announcement for Allen McKenzie to Miss Isabel Gardner, of Great Falls, in Great Falls on January 2, 1918. The couple set up housekeeping in the J.W. Holmes Apartments in Philipsburg. Isabella died in 1969 and Allen died in 1974. Allen ran for State Representative in the 1928 election and lost to M.R. Henderson 613 to 748. He then served as Post Master of Philipsburg, for many years. They are both buried in the Philipsburg cemetery (30).

The head stones for all the other McKenzie’s of this family are spelled MacKenzie: Alexander, died May 20, aged nine weeks and four days, son of John and M. Matilda (there is no year on the headstone); Forrest J. born September 18, 1909 and died September 11, 1971, Montana Sgt 35 Fighter Air Force WWII-Korea; John R. 1851-1931; Mary 1858-1936; Roderick Kenneth July 16, 1881-June 9, 1910. Obviously they wanted their Scottish ancestry to be carved in stone, the same as many of the MacDonald family. 


 Their was an annex of the Kaiser House, connected by a second story walkway which had boarding rooms upstairs and an area for salesmen to display their wares downstairs that was sold by Herman and Mary Kaiser to George A. Stephens. An article in The Philipsburg Territory stated the sale was in 1928 and they go on to say that George ran the Stephens Hotel, for one year and then traded it to Tom O’ Connors, for the ranchland located on the western hillside of the Ross’ Fork of Rock Creek. Contrary to the statement of Stephens‘, buying the Hotel in 1928, I found the following two news articles. First in 1909: 
 The new Stephens Hotel will be under the charge of Mrs. F. J. McDonald. It is Mr. Stephens desire to be a first class place. Mr. and Mrs. McDonald will live at the hotel.”
Then the second article in 1916: 
The Stephens Hotel Dining Room was re-opened Tuesday by E.J. Edwards, a hotel man from Idaho. He will be making a specialty of Sunday dinner (31). 
This demonstrates to me Stephens owned the Hotel before 1909. Old timers, such as Sanders and Hess, verify that Stephens traded the Hotel to O’ Connors for the ranch about 1929. The area, known now as the Stephens reservoir, is part of the Bauer ranch on Ross’ Fork of Rock Creek. The Stephens Hotel was actively run as a boarding house and restaurant for a number of years. A few of those years the Boarding House was operated by my maternal Grandparents: Theodore and Mary Stevens who were no relation to George and the names were spelled differently. 

My aunt Theodora (Goldie) Stevens attended Granite County High School in 1936 and then married Wilbur (Pee Wee) Crossman from the lower valley, on June 12, 1937. They had a son Charles (Chuckie) before they divorced. Goldie died of breast cancer in May of 1980, in Medford, Oregon. She was survived by her husband Guy Delp, Chuckie and two grand daughters: Margie and Trish, and was buried in the Steven’s family plot, in Missoula, Montana.  


I found references to the George Stephens family, as early as 1900, when he bought some of the stock of the John Neu Grocery Store and C.T. Huffman bought the remaining grocery stock from Neu. This same article in the Mail identified George as a former City Marshall (32).

In 1905, there was: 
a small roof fire in Jacky dwelling on Montgomery occupied by G.A. Stephens and Family. Florian Winninghoff was at work nearby and saw the blaze. He was on the roof with a hose and had the fire out before firemen arrived.
Research revealed the family was living in Berkeley, California, with their daughter Edna and where Edna wed W. Warrell Townes on June 11, 1927, at Mr. and Mrs. George A. Stephens’s home, in Berkeley. 

George A. Stephens died at St. Ann’s Hospital in Anaconda on July 29, 1937, from injuries he suffered when he was struck by a truck while walking on the Skalkaho Highway on July 28, 1937. George was walking with Clyde Daniels of Philipsburg, one mile west of the bridge over the west Fork of Rock Creek, when the truck, which was hauling stulls, approached them. Hoyt Stevens, driver of the truck, said that he sounded the horn to warn the two men, and that they immediately separated, going to the opposite sides of the highway. Mr. Stephens suddenly turned and attempted to return to the other side of the road when he was struck by the truck (33). According to Sheriff Gus McDonald, who investigated the accident “He suffered fractured ribs, fractures of both arms and legs and a scalp injury.” 

The published obituary stated George was born in Missouri, on December 28, 1870, living around Philipsburg for forty four years. Twenty of those years were spent ranching on Ross Fork of Rock Creek. His son Carl was with him at the time of his death, and Roy arrived on Sunday. They both were residing in California. He was survived by his wife Mrs. Edna E. Stephens of Palo Alto, California and his two sons named above and a daughter Edna Townes of Fresno, California, plus seven brothers and four sisters. The body was cremated after a short funeral service in Great Falls, with his ashes sent to relatives in California. 

The Coroner’s jury, conducted by Arthur Longfellow, of Deer Lodge and County Attorney D.M. Durfee, gave an open verdict of death, secondary to shock and injuries. Witness’s called for the inquest were: Dr. L.P. Martin, Sheriff Angus McDonald, Hoyt Stevens, Clyde Daniels, Frank Haacke, Lewis Evert and Robert Bowers (Sic-this should be Bauers), of Philipsburg and Dr. F.J. Malloy of Anaconda (34). 

A petition for letters of administration of the estate of George A. Stephens, deceased, was filed in the office of the Clerk of Court; the petition listed the assets of the estate at $12,500.00. S.P. Wilson was nominated as administrator by Carl S. Stephens and Roy W. Stephens, sons of deceased. The hearing on the petition would be held before E.J. Donnelly, Clerk of the Court, on Monday, August 16, 1937 (35). 

Mrs. George Stephens died at her home in Palo Alto, California in March, 1939. She moved there with the children in 1923, according to her obituary. Her ashes were put with George’s and they were buried in the Palo Alto crematorium. Survivors were her children: Carl, Roy and Edna. Further reference involving the Stephens family is in the Amerine Chapter in Book II. 


Another progressive pioneer was Lou Shodair, who had an early Grocery store in the city with ads dispersed through-out the Philipsburg Mail, stating such things as:
Live and dressed poultry at Shodair’s”, Swiss Cheese at Shodair’s”, Lindberger Cheese at Shodair’s, Green Groceries at Shodair’s.
Then in 1895 was a notice stating
parties indebted to L.W. Shodair were asked to call and settle their accounts with County Attorney Moore and save collection costs (36). 

In the same paper it stated Mr. and Mrs. Lou Shodair had left for the coast to spend a couple or more months in California. Obviously by December they had returned as Lou was elected to the office of Prelate in the Philipsburg Lodge No. 20, Knights of Pythias, on December 16 (37).

Another article in the Philipsburg Mail stated that Mr. and Mrs. L.W. Shodair went by train to visit Yellowstone National Park. They would spend some time on a visit to Dr. and Mrs. W.H. Allen, at Horr, Montana, and were to be joined by Miss Mabel Browning, at that place, and she would take a tour of the park in company with them (38).

L.W., was elected to the Philipsburg City Council prior to 1897 and submitted his resignation for his position as Alderman at the May 3, City Council meeting, with Charles Boyd, elected by the Council to serve the remainder of Shodair’s term and the City Council minutes of May 17, stated the name of Alderman Boyd be substituted for that of Lou Shodair on all committees. 

The 1897 election, was very contentious, with a lot of verbal insults between the Independent Citizen’s and the Citizen’s Fusion parties. Valentine Jacky ran against M.E.H. Gannon for Mayor and was represented by factions who had caused lots of ill-feelings when pitted against one and other. Valentine won the election (39). 

Lou was serving as City Clerk, when he signed the notice stating the annual city election would be held on the fifth day of April, 1897, to elect one Mayor for the un-expired term of one year; one Alderman for the first ward for two years; one Alderman for the second ward for two years; one Alderman for the third ward for two years. A social event sponsored by the Kings Daughter’s of the Presbyterian Church, was held at the home of Mr. and Mrs. L.W. Shodair, to say farewell to Miss Addie Arnold, who was returning to her home in Missouri, published in the December 18, 1897, Philipsburg Mail.

Then research found in 1912: 
L.W. Shodair, a former merchant of Philipsburg, was a visitor in the city, Monday evening, having come over from Butte to see about improvements in his building, occupied by the Crystal saloon and lodging house and incidentally, to visit some of his old time friends. Mr. Shodair for some years has resided in Los Angeles, California, coming to Montana occasionally on business during the summer. The recent fire on West Park Street in Butte brought him to Montana this time. He owns a block across the street from the fire and had a large plate glass window broken and sustained other damage, the adjustment of which required his presence….Mrs. Shodair did not come with him this time (40).

I found where a fire in Philipsburg, threatened an entire business block on January 3, 1920, when the Crystal Saloon caught on fire. The fire was discovered by Chris Larson, who alerted Fay Easterly, the proprietor of the soft drink parlor on the bottom floor. A space about two feet wide saved the Banquet Hotel, along with the iron shutters on the windows. All the furniture from the saloon was removed, except the stove, but the upper floor was a total loss. Mr. Easterly’s loss was about $2,000 and the loss to the building was estimated to be about one third of the building. Louis Shodair owned the building and it was assumed that Mr. Shodair would be able to remove the second story and put a flat roof over the storage room, making the building a one story. 

Next, the February 20, 1920, Philipsburg Mail, announced L. W. Shodair, sent the Philipsburg Fire Brigade a check for $50, showing his appreciation for their work when the fire damaged his building, a few weeks before. 

Then research revealed an article, headlined “L.W. Shodair Makes Donates (sic) to Home”, in 1937 stating: 

Of much interest to old time residents in the city is the announcement made this week by trustees of the Montana Children’s Home and Hospital at Helena, that Louis W. Shodair, of Los Angeles, had donated $50,000 to the home. The money will be used to furnish a new unit at the hospital on the grounds of the present unit. Mr. Shodair is a former resident of Philipsburg, having lived here some forty years ago. He was engaged here in the mercantile business. Mr. Shodair left Philipsburg to make his home in Butte, at which place he erected the Shodair Block on West Park Street. He left Butte about twenty years ago for southern California where he has since made his home (41). 

In 1957, Mr. and Mrs. William McLeod took their son Billy to Helena, where the young boy was admitted to the Shodair Hospital. Billy had been stricken with polio several years before and had been in a cast since surgery. The cast was to be removed and he would be a patient at the hospital for a month, being x-rayed and receiving treatments. This hospital is still in operation in Helena and continues to be named Shodair Children’s Hospital. 

As of this time, I have been unable to find an obituary for Mr. Shodair. 

Politics: The County of Granite and city of Philipsburg 

The county of Granite was carved out of Deer Lodge County and a very tiny sliver of Missoula County, when House Bill No. 110 was passed by the Montana Legislature in 1893. The officers appointed to conduct business in the newly formed county were: John H. Cole Sr. as Sheriff; Arthur A. Fairbairn as Treasurer; George A. Reck as Clerk and Recorder; William Albright as Assessor; Wingfield Brown as County Attorney; Josiah Shull as Clerk of District Court; Mrs. Abbie W. Wilkinson as Superintendent of the County Schools; Dr. William Ray as Coroner; R.M. Ferguson as Public Administrator; George Wilson as County Surveyor; and George B. Cain, E.C. Freyschlag and George W. Morse as County Commissioners (42). 

George Cain was a resident of Granite and George Morse was a resident of New Chicago. Wingfield Brown is discussed in Book II, with his brother, F.D. "Sandbar".  John Cole is discussed through out the book. 

A.A. Fairbairn, County Treasurer was defeated in 1894 by republican John Nixon, but Nixon died while still Treasurer-elect. Fairbairn was appointed to the position by the County Commissioners in May of 1895 (43).

Earlier that year the Fairbairn family welcomed a ten pound baby boy on March 19 (44). In January 1897, A.A., who had been serving as treasurer of the Philipsburg Fire Brigade, for the past two years, requested severing his connection with the brigade secondary to the frequent colds and breathing problems he was encountering. The group discussed the issues and re-elected him treasurer with the understanding that if he showed up at any fires they would fine him $10.00. The group felt it was as necessary to have executive officers as it was to have fire fighters (45). 

 Research revealed an article, in 1902, concerning Notary Public A.A. Fairbairn, which determined he was still around after his terms as County Treasurer. He also ran for a four year term as County Commissioner in 1906 and won with a plurality of eight votes against Joseph Henderson. The last news article I found, A.A. was employed by the Olympic Forest Reserve in the Government Spruce Division and living in Siemsenry, Washington, in 1918 (46). 

 A.A. Fairbairn, aged about seventy years, died at Deaconess Hospital, in Billings, July 10, 1933. He was working as the cashier of the Roundup Division of Montana Power. A native of England, he came to Montana as a young man. As described through out this chapter, he was very active in the politics of Granite County and Philipsburg. An intimate friend, John G. Morony, was one of the founders of Montana Power, and he probably was instrumental in A.A. getting the position in Roundup. The funeral was held at the Methodist Church in Roundup, on July 14, 1933. Survivors were two sons: James of Seattle and Howard of Oregon. Although the obituary does not state anything about his wife, I assume he was buried beside her in the Roundup cemetery (47). 

 Except for Fairbairn, Wingfield Brown and George Morse, the other original County officers either left the county or were not active in business or politics in their later years, as I found no further mention of their endeavors. They are not buried in the Philipsburg cemetery. 

One of the reasons for them leaving politics may be explained by the following occurrence. Mingling finances and politics, George W. Morse and George B. Cain, caused the appointment of a committee to investigate the business of the Granite County Commissioners, in 1894. The committee was comprised of C.F. Jacky, D.N. McDonald, M.B. Scott, W.C. Bradshaw and M. E. H. Gannon. Following is a condensed version of the committee’s report:

 …We find that Granite County became an organized county and capable of contracting a debt on the first of April 1893. We find that George W. Morse, County Commissioner, put in a bill to the county for rent of the present court house and had allowed a warrant issued him for the sum of $495.00 less $100.00, credited the county for certain property sold the county by C.B. Cain for $1,116.50. This rent was collected for the months of April, May and June, 1893, when as a matter of fact, the county was not occupying the building owned by George W. Morse, but on the contrary, the only building occupied by the county was the First National bank, for which the commissioners allowed said Luke the sum of $115.00 from the first of March 1893 to the 18 of July 1893; the Featherman building during a portion of this time was occupied by the county as a jail. We find that during the December term of District Court, the above bills of G.W. Morse and G.B. Cain, in suits entitled: Wingfield L. Brown vs Board of County Commissioners of Granite County, numbered respectively 83 and 84, were pronounced void and illegal charges against the County of Granite and judgment to that effect entered. We find that prior to this suit against G.W. Morse that said Morse had been collecting from the County of Granite, the sum of $405.00 per quarter, from the first day of April, 1893 to December session of the Board, 1893. We find that on January 3, 1894, G.W. Morse and wife purported to convey to his brother, John W. Morse, the said property, owned by G.W. Morse and heretofore occupied by the county as a court house. The deed shows the terms of the sale as follows: Two notes executed by John W. Morse to G.W. Morse & Co., one in the sum of $4000.00, payable January 1, 1895, one for $5,000.00 payable January 1, 1896; the above notes were the consideration paid for this property; that this property was so fraudulently disposed of for the purpose of evading and nullifying the law so effectually invoked against said commissioners to prevent inter-commerce with themselves, is too apparent to require comment from your committee. We find that on said date the sum of $312.50 was allowed Thomas Campbell, attorney fees, to resist the above actions brought against the commissioners by the County Attorney. These suits were brought to prevent void, illegal claims being saddled on the county and the payment of any sum to any attorney for such purpose is an insult and outrage on the people of Granite County. We are informed by competent attorneys that the sum is a void and illegal charge against the county. We find that on the tenth day of January, 1894, the court house leased from John W. Morse, by the Board of County Commissioners of Granite County, for a period of one year, at a rental of $900.00 per quarter or $3,600.00 per year, a certified copy of this remarkable instrument is attached to this report, marked exhibit A and therefore made a part. In the lease John W. Morse is the party of the first part and the Board of Commissioners of said county, the party of the second part and we will herein quote one clause of this instrument. The stoves furniture and fixtures in the building on said premises or attached thereto are hereby expressly reserved to the party of the first part. When we consider that the stoves, furniture and fixtures of this building already belong to the County of Granite, purchased for the county by the present Board of County Commissioners, this clause furnishes considerable food for reflection. We find that on the tenth day of January,1894, the Board of County Commissioners of Granite County allowed John W. Morse, and issued him a warrant for the sum of $1,116.50 for the articles furnished to the county by George B. Cain, and which was pronounced by the District Court, in December to be a void and illegal charge against the county, how the judgment of the court could be thus set aside and the taint of fraud and illegality removed by John W. Morse and the Board of Commissioners, is a matter to be explained by the parties interested and it is beyond the comprehension of your committee. Morse claims to have furnished these articles to the county, for the court house, from June 16, 1893 to August 3, 1893. It appears that Cain, County Commissioner, furnished these articles for the purpose charged, during that time. The most remarkable feature of the whole affair however is, the Commissioners paid John W. Morse this large sum for articles expressly reserved by him in his lease and to become absolutely his property at the expiration of the year (48).
This article goes on to cite the fact the County paid $7,000, for improvements on the jail and paid a party to assess the safety of the jail, but how can it belong to the county when it in “all probability belongs to the owners of the Featherman building” (49). 

The findings then disclose gross discrepancies in the amount of money allowed the commissioners for mileage and meeting dates and ends the report by stating that while dollars had been spent for the rent of the building from Morse, the Commissioners had actually been using the Featherman building. The committee report was signed: C.F. Jacky, D.N. McDonald, M.B. Scott, W.C. Bradshaw and M.E.H. Gannon. 

There was a meeting assembled to receive the report and make resolves, with the final resolve being:

That the county attorney be requested to take steps immediately, to recover from said commissioners and their bondsmen, all moneys illegally diverted from its proper channels, by their acts, during their term of office and that the report of the committee appointed by this body be published, to the end that the taxpayers of said county may be fully informed as to the manner in which its affairs are being conducted. Signed Wingfield L. Brown, James McDonel, A.A. McDonald, William Ray, F.J. Wilson, D.S. McLeod, F.M. Durfee, Frank D. Brown, C.H. Eshbaugh, Steven Severson, D, Mulcihy, A.D. Sutherland, D.M. Durfee, W.S. Twohy, C.F. Schoonover, E.H. Campbell.

George Morse and George Cain’s, response was to write a full column letter in the Citizen Call, October 31, 1894, placing the blame for needing to hire an outside attorney on County Attorney Wingfield Brown. They stated he was so busy speaking at functions that he was never available to advise the commissioners and he charged the county for use of furnishings etc. and had not repaid the amounts, when instructed to. The commissioners had finally taken the improper charges out of his paycheck. They go on to say: 

It is a fact that Brown has neglected his official duties as a county attorney; that he has drawn a salary without having earned it…It is also a fact that if ever there was a county in Montana that has no county attorney, that county is Granite County. 

Needless to say this Board of Commissioners and the City Attorney, Treasurer and Sheriff were not re-elected. As stated in an earlier paragraph, the Treasurer, A.A. Fairbairn, was re-appointed after the Treasurer-elect, John Nixon, died before taking office.

During the District Court session for the week ending May 15, 1894:
 W.L. Brown vs. the Board of County Commissioners: the motion made herein for dismissal by counsel for the claim holder J.W. Morse was argued, and the court granted the application of said claim holder for leave to withdraw the claim…dismissing the action with costs and without prejudice to his presentation of another claim (50). 

 Continuing to demonstrate politics have not changed in the past century is the following statement: “The informations (sic) filed against Commissioners Morse and Cain was thrown out of court.” (51)
Also, in the same 1894 issue of the Call, was the article stating George W. Morse vs George Coulter, decree of foreclosure for plaintiff entered for the sum of $456.76 and costs, demonstrating George Morse was continuing to use the legal process.

Another item of interest published the week of May 23, 1894 was the following gentlemen were admitted to full citizenship: Norman McLean, James Downing, M.S. Morrison, J.D. McDonald, Max Kramer, Theo. Brophy, Albert Neitz, J.P. Richards, Thomas Seymour and Wallace Devine. 

Although G.W. Morse did not fill other elected offices, he was selected as a delegate to the State Republican Convention in 1900, and appointed to the Republican Credentials Committee for the August 30, 1904, primary election. An article re-published thirty five years after it was originally written demonstrates the feeling for George in 1885:

The Colonel came up from the lower valley for a visit this week. He used to be one of the heavy stock growers of the country but of late years he has cut down his herd and is now one of the fortunate ones who has feed enough on hand to carry him through the winter. Personally, he is one of the self made men of Montana and enjoys an envious reputation of being an honorable man and enterprising citizen. He will always receive a warm welcome in Philipsburg (52). 

The ranch the Colonel owned was in partnership with John Hagg, according to John’s obituary. The Colonel, died at the age of eighty four, on December 9, 1922, in New Chicago, where he had resided since prior to 1894. George is discussed in depth in the Patriots Chapter later in this book (53). 

George’s brother, John W. Morse, died March 27, 1909 at the age of seventy five years and is buried in the Philipsburg cemetery. The December 3, 1909, Philipsburg Mail, carried the following article: 

Charlotte Morse, wife of Major John W. Morse adjudged insane and taken to Warm Springs by Sheriff Kennedy and attorney W.E. Morse. She had been in Pennsylvania since the death of her husband until she suddenly returned Monday and moved into her old home which is being rented by Senator and Mrs. George Metcalf. Mrs. Metcalf realizing when Charlotte showed up that she was not thinking correctly left the house and went to relatives until officials could come to the home and remove Mrs. Morse.
 I have been un-successful in finding John’s obituary. 

Research revealed another obituary for a G. W. Morse, who died January 23, 1934, in Park City, Utah, where he had moved to after the Combination Mines had closed down in the mid 1890’s. The article stated, he arrived in Montana in 1886 and began working at the Bi-Metallic in charge of the aerial tramway. Later he was involved in the Mercantile business with Mr. Weinstein and then a grocery business as sole proprietor. After marrying Christina Peterson he became associated with a Mr. Floshbough in the mercantile business in the mining camp of Combination. He was survived by his wife and five daughters: Mrs. Julia Morse, his sister-in-law from Drummond attended the funeral in Utah. 

The two George Morse’s were from two different families. Julia was Frank’s widow, spoken of frequently, such as when she had returned to Drummond, from Missoula after being hospitalized for several weeks. Julia Morse was also the sister of Rozenia McPhail and Mrs. Nannie Featherman. 

The obituary for Frank D. Morse stated G. W. Morse of Park City, Utah, was his brother. Frank was the president of the Drummond State Bank, Deputy Sheriff for eight years and then elected Sheriff of Granite County in 1910, for a term of two years. Born in Bradley, Maine on November 7, 1855, he came to Montana at the age of twenty two and located in Philipsburg where he was in the lumber business, then moved to Elk, Montana where he managed a general store for the firm of Morse & Brogan. Next he mined in Bear Gulch and then took up a homestead near Drummond. He added to that homestead until it reached 1,600 acres. He was a staunch republican, and on May 5, 1883, married Miss Julia Gasper in New Chicago. At the time of his death on November 1, 1922, he was survived by his widow and two sons: Verdine B. and Frank M. who were engaged in the mercantile business in Hall. He had one sister: Mrs. James W. Rodgers of Helena and two brothers: Melvin Morse of Bangor, Maine and George W. Morse of Park City, Utah. Frank was interred in the Valley cemetery after a funeral service at the Methodist Church in Drummond, with Rev. Allan Haldeman officiating (54). 

Frank D. Morse’s grand daughter, Fern Elizabeth Morse Olson, died May 25, 2008, in Polson, Montana. Her obituary mistakenly stated her grandfather was the first sheriff of Granite County. He did not become sheriff until 1910 (55). 

Returning to the politics of the County, an issue that created a great deal of controversy was the election held in 1896, for county offices. The individuals elected were: County Commissioners: E.H. Dunshee, James R. McDonel and D.W. Hennessy; Sheriff: F.J. McDonald; County Clerk and recorder: Daniel Arms; County Treasurer: James K. Pardee; County Assessor: William Neu; Clerk of District Court: A.A. Fairbairn; County Attorney: H.W. Rodgers; County superintendent of Schools: Mary Smith; County Surveyor: E.A. Cralle; Public Administrator: R.M. Ferguson; and Coroner: William Ray (56).

Not only Granite County, but also Flathead, Ravalli, Teton and Valley counties were created in an off election year, and held elections for those seats in 1893 . The issue ended up being considered by the Attorney General and the following was his long awaited decision, in 1897: 

The county commissioners elected last fall in your county are not entitled to their seats next November. The election of county commissioners in your county last November was unauthorized by law and those who received the majority of votes do not secure any rights thereby to hold office. At the time of the adoption of the constitution an ordinance was also adopted providing for an election to be held through out the territory on the first Tuesday in October 1898, for the ratification or rejection of the constitution, and also providing for the election of the different officers named in subdivision 9 of this ordinance….This being so, and a general election taking place in closer proximity to the first of January 1899, than that of a year ago, the election of county commissioners for your county to succeed those in office should take place next fall rather than last fall. It is now understood that a test case will be made by those who supposed they were elected last fall, but it is the popular opinion that the decision of the Attorney General (Nolan) will be endorsed by the Supreme Court (57). 

 It appears strange to me, anyone would believe they would be elected over a year before they were to take office, in the first place, let alone not read the constitution created before the counties were established. 

The Philipsburg City Government was as contentious as the County. During 1894, it was run by N.B. Ringling as mayor; David Pizer, alderman first ward; G.V. Sherman, alderman second ward; and J.A. Spencer, alderman third ward (58). J.A. Spencer is discussed in the Patriots Chapter and I will discuss the others here.

The Citizen Call, May 16, 1894, published the following opinions during the Democratic Convention for city government in 1894, in regards to A.B. Ringling running for alderman first ward.  
Before the convention closed Mr. Ringling withdrew his name and Valentine Jacky was nominated, but he also withdrew. As it was too late to make further nominations for this ward, it was surrendered to the independent nominee, David Pizer, a republican, who has been pledged the support of the Ringling faction, who claim to be democrats, but who, notwithstanding they were invited, refused to go into the democratic meeting and take the chances in securing the nomination for their leader and dictator N.B. Ringling…This action alone should send him to the bottomless pit of defeat, and banish him forever and eternally from the minds of conscientious and fair minded men. He has proven himself a vacuum in mid air in a post hole and the angels whose white wings are to guide the action of the people next Saturday, please give us defeat rather than any alliance which will make N.B. Ringling and a democrat the same.

In the same issue, was published the following ballot: For Mayor: James McDonel Democrat and N.B. Ringling, Independent and signed by M.H. Bryan, Town Clerk. Ringling won this election. In 1897, N.B. was elected to the High School Board and appointed as president with Dr. W.I. Power vice-president and M.H. Bryan as clerk. Then, Ringling ran for sheriff as a candidate of the Peoples party, in the 1904 general election, against J.D. Kennedy and Findley McDonald, receiving only fifty six votes (59). 

N.B. Ringling was in the headlines of the January 26, 1906, Philipsburg Mail, with the sale of mining claims in Butte. He held half interest in two placer mining claims near the Pittsmont shaft, for over twenty three years, and though it was considered of little value he had continued to hold onto the claims. The Amalgamated Copper Company, were co-owners of claims only 500 feet away. Mr. J. J. Stewart of Butte, agreed to pay N.B. $100,000. A cash payment was made as a down payment and the remainder was to be paid in four quarterly installments ending in 18 months. Although N.B. felt the price really too low he had the need to provide comfort to his aging mother, so agreed to the price. 


N. B.’s brother, A.B. Ringling, was involved in the re-organization of the Philipsburg Silver Cornet Band and served as their secretary and as a trustee. In the same issue of the Mail, is the announcement, 

A.B. Ringling was elected president of the newly organized stockmen’s association. Vice president was Albert Shuh (Schuh), Treasurer A.A. McDonald and Secretary C.H. Eshbaugh. Next A.B. was re-elected as Chief of the Fire Brigade and because the treasury was in negative territory a committee was formed of Ringling, Fairbairn, and A.S. Huffman to revise the Fireman’s Hall rental schedule. 

This was where most of the town dances and social functions were held (60). Continued research reveals he was elected as an alderman, evidenced when he “made a motion that the appointment of Mayor (Allison) be ratified, all voting aye except Ald. J.K. Pardee, who declined to vote” and he was elected president of the City Council at the May 3, 1897 Council meeting. He was also involved in mining in the Frog Pond basin as I found the following: “Mrs. A.B. Ringling left last week for the Frog Pond basin, where her husband is engaged in mining. Mrs. Ringling contemplates remaining all winter” (61). 

There are no Ringling’s buried in the Philipsburg cemetery and the reason is that the family plot is in the Mount Moriah Cemetery, in Butte. Nicholas Berhoud Ringling, “Montana’s oldest mining engineer and resident of Granite County for the last fifty years”, died on his ninety first birthday, at a friend's home at Georgetown Lake, on February 6, 1940. Born in St. Louis Missouri on February 6, 1849, he was educated in Missouri and then attended Washington University. Next he traveled to Freiburg, Germany and attained a mining degree at their world famous mining school. In 1875, he moved to Butte and was an associate of Marcus Daly in the early 1880’s and ran a mining office with a partner named Kellogg. N.B. came to Philipsburg about 1890, opening a mining office and then, became involved with Hope Mining Company. During the years he acquired many mining properties and in his later years spent his time working the claims. He was a very large, handsome man as evidenced in two pictures from the Tex Crowley collection (62). His athletic build served him well as a fencer and boxer. He trained in his early years under a renowned English Boxing champ named Tom Allen. His horses, racing dogs and game cocks were the finest in the area and he made a handsome sight when he drove the streets in his Connolly Buggy. Because he never married, he lived alone in his residence on the upper end of Broadway, after his mother and two brothers died.

A picture of him with the Barr Family and their daughter Kathryn Hoben shows a very large dapper man, dressed in a fur coat. Funeral services were held in Anaconda on February 8, with burial in the family plot at Mount Moriah cemetery, in Butte (63). 

 The Philipsburg City Council meetings were always published with a lot of the same controversy as the county. Council meetings included much debate, such as when a controversy occurred as many of the aldermen did not want a position of registry agent. After much debate, one of the five applicants for the position was appointed by Mayor Allison. A.S. Huffman won the appointment over Lawrence Hauck, W.M. Loring, C. H. Coy, and E.B. Hyde (64). 

 By 1900, the Mayor of Philipsburg was Charles Boyd and the absent alderman was A.A. Fairbairn, who apparently was also the Clerk of Court and was on a visit to Helmville. County officers included George Metcalf as Sheriff, John Neu as Clerk and Recorder and O. F. Featherman as County Treasurer (65).

The Philipsburg Mail was given the contract for supplying all the city’s necessary printing for the year 1900. Prior to this date, I found in 1895 the County Commissioner’s approved payment to the Mail, for only $24.60 versus The Call Publishing Company bill, for $274.52 for the month of April, demonstrating that in 1895, the Call, held the county publishing contract. Be reminded the Call was the democratic venue and the Mail was the republican news. 


Edgar Ballard was elected County Clerk and Recorder in 1904, winning the seat by a plurality of 224 votes after running against L.E. Higley, Republican and John Neu. The next year, in Butte, Montana on October 9, 1905, Edgar married Margaret Gallagher at her parent's home. Margaret was the daughter of Judge and Mrs. Peter Gallagher. They were residents of Granite and Philipsburg for many years, with Mr. Gallagher prominent in the political arena. Edgar graduated from Philipsburg High School in 1899 and Margaret was a graduate of the 1903 class.
The newly weds returned to Philipsburg on October 10 and were driven to the home of Mr. and Mrs. G. B. Ballard for an exquisite reception. Later in the evening the couple was variously serenaded by the rising generation of the city and on October 11, a reception and supper was given where the county officials were invited to attend. Since graduation Mrs. Ballard has been teaching school in different parts of the state (66). 

 Edgar’s parents were George Byron and Lavina Jane (Miller) Ballard. Lavina was born in Fairfield, Missouri on August 31, 1857. Her father died in the Civil War while fighting for the Confederate Army, and she came with her mother and two sisters to Montana in 1870. The family resided in Radersburg. Lavina and George were married there in 1874, although George’s obituary stated they were married in Keating, Montana. The newlyweds lived in Radersburg until July 1877, when George accepted a position at the Hope mine, as foreman. While the Hoist was operating the family lived “on top of the hill near the Porter Shaft.” (67)  Then when the mine began to operate through the Jubilee Tunnel, Mr. Ballard built their home on the north side of Philipsburg. 

Lavina died after a long illness at the family home on August 4, 1908. The funeral was performed at the family home, by Rev. Samuel Taylor and Rev. J.B. Stevens. Graveside services were conducted by the Eastern Star Pearl Chapter and the Bitter Root Circle of Women of Woodcraft. Pall bearers were: J.W. Hall, Angus Johnston, H.A. Featherman, John Ainsley, Z.C. Pringley and F.D. Sayrs. Survivors were: her husband, three sons, Alfred, Edgar (the current Clerk and Recorder), and Walter, daughter Mrs. J.U. Potts of Spokane and mother, Mrs. Sitten of Belgrade, plus two sisters and five step-sisters all residing in the Gallatin, Townsend and Radersburg area (68).

George B. Ballard, born in 1842, in Augusta, Maine began his venture to Montana, in 1861. He traveled by rail to St. Joseph, Missouri, then by boat up the Missouri to Omaha, where he joined a bull train and came across the plains with a party of about fifty people. His traveling companion was a schoolmate James U. Saunders, who was living in Ennis, Montana at the time of George’s death. They arrived in Virginia City, Montana in the spring of 1864 and Saunders began ranching in the Madison Valley and George took up the career of mining. After marrying Lavina Miller in 1874, at Keating, Montana, George and the family moved to Philipsburg in 1877. He was the foreman of the Hope Mine for many years. After Lavina’s death in 1908, George moved to Butte in 1909 and lived with his son Walter until 1913, when he moved to Three Forks and took up a homestead adjoining his brother James. On Sunday the 19, of March 1916, George was recuperating from an illness that had hospitalized him in Three Forks. He was staying at his brother’s ranch until his strength returned, when he got up to throw out a basin of water and collapsed. His nephew summoned help but George was already dead.

His body was brought to Philipsburg on the evening train and was laid in state at the family home occupied by his son County Clerk Edgar Ballard and family. On Wednesday the body was moved to the Masonic Temple where the burial rites were observed. He had been an active Mason for more than forty years. Pallbearers that laid his body next to Lavina were: A.S. Huffman, F.D. Sayrs, O.C. Mesereau, H.A. Featherman, A. Johnston and F.M. Kent. Survivors were: sons, James A. Ballard of Philipsburg, Edgar P. Ballard of Philipsburg, and Walter T. Ballard of Butte, who was employed at the Daly Bank and Trust; and daughter Mrs. Gussie Potts of Three Forks; and brother James S. Ballard and wife and children of Three Forks (69). 

George’s son, Edgar P. Ballard, was born February 17, 1881, in Philipsburg. As stated above, he married Miss Margaret Gallagher, of Butte in 1905, after winning the election for Clerk and recorder in 1904. Edgar ran for re-election in 1906, beating James T. Baker. In 1908, Edgar lost the election to Frank E. Wileman, by a plurality of 113 votes. In 1914, Edgar ran again against the incumbent Wileman and won by a plurality of seventy three votes. In 1916, he won against Emmett Carey and in 1918 Otis Mersereau had one vote to Ballard’s 903. Running for re-election in 1920, Edgar lost to John L. Herron by a plurality of 127 votes and in 1922, he lost to John M. Warner, by a plurality of fifty votes (70). 

Shortly after the 1922 election, the family moved to Butte, where Edgar was employed for a short time, then moved to Anaconda and in 1926, were in Deer Lodge, where he was employed as a book keeper for the C.L. Colbert Service Station.

Margaret was in Butte, visiting her parents, when Edgar, at the age of forty five, died from the effects of drinking Lysol, on July 20, 1926. The body was brought to the home of Mr. and Mrs. P.J. Ryan (Margaret’s sister), in Philipsburg and the funeral was held July 22, at the Methodist Church with Rev. Fred Anstice officiating. Pallbearers were: John Hickey, Chauncey Kennedy, Allen McKenzie, John O’Donnell, Arthur Taylor and Alex R. McDonald. Margaret and Edgar had a son William Edgar in 1909, who died the year after Edgar in 1927. Father and son are buried on either side of George and Lavina. I do not find a grave for Margaret (71).

Otis Mersereau is frequently listed through out this book as a pallbearer and receiving one vote (which he may have written in) frequently in the general elections. The only information I have of him, is that he worked as a janitor for the court house and was paid $137.50 for the month of October 1928.



[1]  New Northwest, July 8, 1881.
[2]  Philipsburg Mail, May 4, 1893; May 11, 1893.
[3] Citizen Call, December 25, 1899.
[4]  Philipsburg Mail, August 21, 1896; December 31, 1896.
[5]  ibid, April 11, 1895; Citizen Call, March 6, 1895; March 13, 1895;
[6]  ibid, September 13, 1901.
[7]  ibid, September 9, 1904
[8] ibid, March 5, 1937.
[9] ibid, January 30, 1903.
[10]  ibid, December 4, 1903.
[11] ibid, January 27, 1972.
[12]  ibid, November 23, 1934.
[13]  ibid, May 11, 1893; Philipsburg Territory, 2005 and 2007.
[14]  ibid, January 17, 1895; June 15, 1934.
[15]  ibid, June 14, 1934; June 23, 1922; November 17, 1922; February 27, 1925.
[16]  ibid, June 15, 1934.
[17]  ibid, September 6, 1907.
[18]  ibid, July 10, 1914.
[19]  ibid, December 26, 1919; January 17, 1920.
[20]  ibid, April 10, 1925.
[21] ibid, October 18, 1918.
[22]  ibid, October 8, 1937.
[23]  ibid, November 30, 1928.
[24]  ibid, December 13, 1918.
[25]  ibid, December 11, 1908.
[26]  ibid, February 15, 1914.
[27]  ibid, June 28, 1929.

Titus, McKenzie, Harrington

[28]  ibid, June 10, 1910; October 13, 1939; Bentz, 2002; Hess, 2003; Bronderslev, 2003; Sanders, 2005.
[29]  ibid, December 13, 2007.
[30]  ibid, January 11, 1918; November 30, 1928; February 13, 1931; November 18, 1928.
[31]  ibid, February 4, 1909; December 22, 1916.
[32]  ibid, October 5, 1900


[33]  ibid, December 15, 1905; June 17, 1927; July 30, 1937’ August 6, 1937.
[34]  ibid, August 13, 1937.
[35]ibid, August 6, 1937.


[36] Philipsburg Mail, January 24, 1895.
[37]  ibid, December 19, 1895.
[38]  ibid, August 21, 1896.
[39]  ibid, March 26, 1897; April 9, 1897; May 21, 1897.
[40]  ibid, September 27, 1912.
[41]  ibid, January 9, 1920; February 5, 1937; author, 2007.

Politics: the County of Granite and city of Philipsburg

[42]  Citizen Call, May 23, 1894
[43]  ibid, May 6, 1895.
[44]  ibid, March 13, 1895.
[45]  ibid, January 8, 1897.
[46]  ibid, January 14, 1902; November 6, 1906; November 29, 1918.
[47]  ibid, July 14, 1933.
[48]  Citizen Call, January 31, 1894.
[49]  ibid.
[50]  ibid, May 16, 1894.
[51]  ibid, May 23, 1894
[52]  Philipsburg Mail, August 31, 1900; September 2, 1904; December 31, 1920.
[53]  ibid, December 9, 1927; December 15, 1922; Citizen Call, May 23, 1894.
[54]  ibid, February 23, 1934; October 7, 1933; November 3, 1922.
[55]  ibid, May 29, 2008.
[56]  ibid, November 20, 1896.
[57]  ibid, October 29, 1897.
[58]  Citizen Call, May 23, 1894.

 [59] Philipsburg Mail, April 9, 1897; November 8, 1904
[60]  ibid, May 14, 1896; January 8, 1897.
[61]  ibid, March 5, 1897; May 7, 1897; December 15, 1899.


[62]  Possession of LouAnn Fessler Sichveland, 2008.
[63]  ibid, February 9, 1940.
[64]  ibid, March 5, 1897.
[65]  ibid, February 2, 1900; November 23, 1900.
[66]  ibid, October 13, 1905.


[67]  ibid, August 7, 1908.
[68]  ibid.
[69]  ibid, March 24, 1916.
[70]  ibid, November 18, 1904; November 16, 1906; November 13, 1908; November 18, 1910; November 13, 1914; November 17, 1916; November 22, 1918; November 12, 1920; November 17, 1922.
[71]  ibid, July 23, 1926.
[72]  ibid, December 14, 1928.

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