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Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Sept. 17 – On this day in Montana history in 1945 Philip Douglas Jackson was born in Deer Lodge. Jackson, better known as Phil, went on to graduate from the University of North Dakota and to basketball fame as a player for the New York Knicks and later as a coach for the Chicago Bulls and the Los Angeles Lakers winning championships at all three stops.  He also wrote books including “Sacred Hoops: Spiritual Lessons of a Hardwood Warrior,” which delved into his Zen influenced philosophy of life and basketball.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Sept. 16 – On this day in Montana history in 1926 Sarah Bickford, a black woman who owned the Virginia City water system, brought suit against the city for failing to pay its bills for rental of city water hydrants. She eventually was successful and ran the mining city’s water system until her death in 1931. She was a groundbreaker for black people in the state and a respected business leader.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Sept. 15 – On this day in Montana history in 1910 The Newspaper of Chester published what it called the “Ten New Dry Landers’ Commandments” on its front page.  Among them was “thou shalt plow deep,” “thou shalt summer fallow when rainfall is less than 15 inches,” “thou shalt add organic matter to the soil.” The list ended with “he who obeys these commandments shall reap abundant crops.”

Friday, September 12, 2014

Sept. 12 – On this day in Montana history in 1907 a Great Northern Railroad Oriental Limited express car was held up and robbed near Rexford. Two men who were onboard the train climbed over the tender and forced the engineer to stop the train in the wilderness near Yaak. They blew up one of two safes in the car and reportedly netted about $40,000. George Frankhauser and Charles McDonald were eventually convicted of the crime, but not before escaping from the Lewis and Clark jail and eventually being recaptured.

Friday, August 22, 2014

Aug. 22 – on this day in Montana history in 1874 the Madisonian newspaper in Virginia City offered some tips on how to deal with the heat under a headline “Modern Health Rules.” Perhaps with tongue in cheek one of the guidelines offered was: “Clothes prevent the escape of heat from the body; wear only a loose shirt and drawers.” One never sees photos of early day miners dressed like that – and it’s probably a good thing.


Thursday, August 21, 2014

Aug. 21 – On this day in Montana history in 1884 an incident occurred that reminds us that domestic violence has long been a serious problem. A couple identified only as Mr. and Mrs. Westlake got into a family fight in Butte and Mrs. Westlake was knocked off a veranda suffering severe injuries. “Mr. Westlake, unfortunately, was not hurt,” the Weekly Herald reported. Later he tried to take his own life in jail. The headline called it “Domestic Discord.”

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Aug. 20 – On this day in Montana history in 1905 Butte was mourning the deaths of 10 people and injuries to more than 20 others after a railroad freight car crashed into a crowded trolley returning from the Columbian Gardens amusement park. Butte reporters wrote that the trolley was crushed into kindling and that many of the faces of the dead could not be recognized. “Men cried out for members of their families from whom they had been separated and mothers begged piteously concerning their children.”