Monday, October 20, 2014

Oct. 20 – On this day in Montana history in 1908 the state was abuzz with news that one of the most notorious con men in state history had been arrested in St. Paul, Minn., for vagrancy. Starting out as a telegrapher in Kalispell, Gordon P. Brown received a $7,500 settlement – a large sum in those days – for an injury he received in a train mishap. He took the money to Washington and passed himself off as a millionaire from Montana, and spent his way into the good graces of the McKinley White House. He was a Washington darling until the money dried up, and he disappeared leaving a host of bills unpaid behind him.

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