The Big Sandy Mountaineer -

Pioneer Days at Big Sandy, Montana


December 4, 2019

As the year 1911 started to draw to a close and Christmas approached the theme, "Peace on Earth, Good Will to Men", was forgotten and the Army moved in to settle cattle and sheep trouble, which blazed u over the use of the Fort Assinniboine military reservation for grazing purposes.

The previous year a petition had been presented to Congress requesting permission to graze stock on the military reservation, claiming that the drought of 1910 left the range in such poor condition that stock was starving to death and no water was obtainable.

Military authorities cancelled all permits and Lieutenant Husington of the Fourteenth Infantry was sent from Fort Harrison to Fort Assinniboine to order all stock off the reservation.

Several sheep outfits refused to move after being ordered to and Lieutenant Husington and a detachment burned their camp wagons, and after several thousand dollars' worth of hay stacked on the reservation on Box Elder Creek was burned out the reservation was cleared of stock.

Facilities were meager, the country was still sparsely settled, but the Yuletide season was remembered.

December 23 a Christmas program was held at the Prairie Home School. The first school on the prairie, under the direction of Miss Medene.

December 25th the children of the Big Sandy School had a Christmas tree and program. Gifts were exchanged and a Grand Ball was held after the program.

1912-The first part of December a meeting of the ladies of Big Sandy was held and plans were made for exercises to be held Christmas night; with a program, popcorn, candy, peanuts, Santa Claus and presents. An excellent program was presented by the little folks at the Oliver Opera House.

C. T. Hansen's Store had a complete line of Xmas goods including toys, cut glass, hand painted china and silverware. McNamara and Marlow's Store had Santa Claus as their guest and carried a complete line of Xmas gifts. Lundeen Bros. were selling Christmas candies for 15c a pound and apples for $1.50 a box.

1912 ended with a new business in the commun ity. Frank Worstell advertised that he had a new water wagon and would deliver Mountain Water to any residence for 35c a barrel.

1913 Christmas shoppers were offered a variety of merchandise to choose from. The Wa-Hoo had Bond, Lillard, Bourbon, and Monogram Rye and Imported and Domestic Wines. At Lundeen Brothers a Royal customed tailored suit for men could be purchased for as little as $16 and there was a choice of silverware, aluminum, fancy china, leather goods, gloves, mittens, neckties, suspenders, dolls, skis, hand sleighs, Winslow skates, cast aluminum ware, crockery, electric supplies, domes and portables, and gas and kerosene parlor lamps. The Big Sandy Garage, J. E. Miller, prop., was taking orders for Fords, the universal car. Alex Hershe had a full line of jewelry and clocks. Mrs. F.W. Collins was selling finished and unfinished embroidery work, kimonas, dressing sacques, house dresses, and pantaloons skirts. McNamara and Marlows Store had dolls, doll carts, pianos, dishes, sleds, rocking horses, spinning wheels, guns, drums, rubber balls, Xmas tree trimmings, bells, Xmas candles, and fancy Xmas boxes. C.T. Hanson offered toys, shoes, overshoes, mittens and outing flannels. At the City Studio, the customers received on photo free with each dozen.

53 business and professional men of Big Sandy extended Seasons Greetings to the population in 1914 Christmas issue of the Bear Paw Mountaineer. There were: Wiley and Elliott, Orpheum Theatre; McNamara and Marlow; A.G. Waite, Lawyer; Collins Blacksmith Shop; Wah-Hoo, George Stevens, Prop.; J.C, Knight, Well Driller; New Grand Opera House, R. S. Tingley; Mahood and Myers Garage; Pear Paw Café, C. H. Kono, prop.; Lundeen Brothers; B. s. Meat Market, P.H. Schwartz; C. T. Hansen Store; City Butcher Shop, Harry Brassington, prop., The Paris Hat Shop, Mrs. F. W. Collins; B.S. Tailor shop, B.D. Harmon; Hugh O. Schrammeck, real estate; G. D. Eckart, real estate, Martin Balazic, shoe shop. Emery D. Harndern, attorney; City Hospital, Dr. Worstell; Dr. C.L. McLellan; C.N. Alkire, veterinarian; Montana Hotel, G. Hokanson; John Ulin, contractor; John Norden, draying; Sidney Smith, auto livery; Hiram Day, blacksmith; St. Anthony and Dakota Lumber Co.; White Barber Shop; Northern Montana State Bank; H.H. Lehfeldt, real estate; Bear Paw Mountaineer; Big Sandy Harness Shop, C. r. Wall; Big Sandy Saloon; Eal Eck Bar, Eckhart and O'Neil; Big Sandy Café, George Shikato and Tom Matsumato; Mack Mine, Bert Mack. Brende Brothe's Hardware; Security State Bank; Campbell Land Co., George Campbell; Frank R. Ryan, dry goods; City Bakery Shop, Henry Mitchell; Big Sandy Feed Store, Seacoy and Beck; Wolverine Hotell, G. A. Hofsommer; Carssows Pool Gall; Exchange Salon and Spokane Hotel, C. B. VanAlstine; Pioneer Livery, R. S. Tingley; Alex Herch, jewelry; Oliver Opera House; The Famers Restaurant, and the Empire Cumber co.


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