Blog Archive – Nancy Watts

From the Library Archives: The Power Mercantile company by Nancy Watts -      The Power Mercantile company at 301 W. Broadway was built in 1913 as an extension of their Main Street building. (now vacant, formerly Sears, and later the Mini-Mall). The Midland Bowling Alley was in the basement.      “Manager W.D. Symmes, of the Power Mercantile company, gave out the pleasing announcement yesterday that arrangements have…
From the Library Archives: History of the Ford Garage by Nancy Watts - The Ford garage at 519 W. Broadway (now Duane Sparks Chevrolet) was built in 1915-1916 “The phenomenal growth of Lewistown was matched by the growth of the automobile… E.R. Roehl, manager of the new Ford garage, began business in Lewistown in the fall of 1912, selling his first Fords from the railroad car in which…
Jailhouse Rock – from the Library Historical Archives by Nancy Watts - The two-story stone Fergus County jail (now the Fergus County Extension office) was built in 1904 before the current courthouse (built in 1907). “Notice is hereby given that the board of County commissioners of Fergus County asked for bids for the construction of the stone work for a two-story stone jail building to be built…
Telephone Building – From the Library Historical Archives by Nancy Watts - The Dial Exchange Building (Telephone Building) at 114 5th Ave North was built in 1912 by the Mountain States Telephone and Telegraph Co. The architect was Mountain Bell, Denver Office, and it was constructed by C.E. Walker of Denver, Colorado. “A deal was consummated last Friday whereby the Lewistown Billings Mutual Telephone Company transferred all…
Jailhouse Rock – from the Library Historical Archives by Nancy Watts - The two-story stone Fergus County jail (now the Fergus County Extension office) was built in 1904 before the current courthouse (built in 1907). “Notice is hereby given that the board of County commissioners of Fergus County asked for bids for the construction of the stone work for a two-story stone jail building to be built…
From the Library archives: The First Presbyterian Church by Nancy Watts - There were two First Presbyterian Churches built in Lewistown. One was built in 1892 on the corner of Janeaux and 5th Avenue South and the other in 1912 at 215 5th Ave South (where it is now). The first church: “…the [Presbyterian] trustees proceeded to buy lots on the corner of 5th Avenue and Janeaux…
St. Leo’s Catholic Church by Nancy Watts - The first St. Leo’s Catholic Church was built in 1887-1888 on Miller Street. When the Milwaukee Railroad decided to build a depot on Dawes Street (where the Yogo Inn is now) they wanted to close Janeaux Street. Since this would block access to the Catholic Church, Father van den Broeck protested and he reached an…
St. Joseph’s Hospital (now Fountain Terrace Condominiums) by Nancy Watts - “Sister Philomene of the Order of the Daughters of Jesus, arrived in Lewistown in 1903, spending the next three years operating a school to raise money to build a hospital. [Peter] Tuss won the con­tract and began laying stone in October, 1906, finish­ing his part of the job two years later. John F. Plo­vanic eventually…
The Milwaukee Depot by Nancy Watts - The Milwaukee Depot (now the Yogo Inn) was built in 1913 at 211 E. Main, Lewistown, Montana. In 1903 the first train into Lewistown was owned by the Montana Railroad. The Montana Railroad built a depot at the end of 1st Avenue South and Brassey Street. When the Milwaukee Railroad from 1907-1910 bought and took…
Central Feed building by Nancy Watts - The Central Feed building was built in 1916 at 220 E. Main as the Lewistown Mercantile Co. In 1930 it was the Nash-Finch Company then in 1952 it was called the Ryan Lewistown Co. In 1967 it became Central Feed. It is now the Central Feed Grilling Company and Big Spring Brewery. “The General Brokerage…
Brooks Building by Nancy Watts - The Brooks Building at 203-207 W. Main was built in 1913 by Piper Construction Co. The architects were Wasmansdorff and Eastman. The original owners were Henry and John Brooks. Willard’s Grill and the Willard Rooms (Charles B. Willard, Proprietor) were located in this building in 1914. Later it was the Majestic Bar and Hotel and…
The Diamond Block by Nancy Watts - The Diamond Block at 417-421 W. Main was built in 1907 by Wells and Ellsworth. John Kent was the architect. The building was divided into 3 parts: the left part was occupied by the Sutter Bros Jewelry and the Art Music Store (Emil Saxl); the center was occupied by the Democrat Newspaper and the right…
The Attix Clinic by Nancy Watts - The Attix Clinic (now 618 Coffee) at 618-620 W. Main was built in 1916. The architects were Wasmansdorff & Eastman; it was originally built to have 5 floors but due to economic conditions at that time the added floors were never built. “Dr. Attix was a native of Detroit Lakes, Minn., where he was born…
Weaver Block by Nancy Watts - The Weaver Block was built in 1916 at 314 W. Main. (now empty, formerly The Leader store and in later years The 3 B’s Store). James A. and Samuel C. Weaver of Lewistown and Edward M. Weaver of Kendall, were the sons of James B. Weaver. Samuel was born in 1873 and died in 1919.…
The Woodman Building by Nancy Watts - The Woodman Building (Serv-Ur-Self Furniture) at 515 W. Main was built in 1916. The architects were Link and Haire.  The first businesses to occupy the building were the Lewistown Grocery and the Democrat News/Fergus County Democrat. “Martin L. Woodman arrived in Central Montana in 1882 and was engaged in farming for many years. He married…
The Abel Building by Nancy Watts - The Abel Building was built in 1909 at 507 W. Main by the Abel Brothers, John F. and Wm. M. (Today it is the Never Open Antique Store).  “John and Wm Abel of the firm of Abel Brothers, butchers, whose shop [Central Meat Market] is located on lower Main Street, last week purchased of M.…
Fergus County Realty Building by Nancy Watts - Fergus County Realty Building (News-Argus) was built in 1914 at 521 W. Main. The Post Office occupied the right side of the building and the Arro Confectionery occupied the left side. “The postoffice at Lewistown is to be moved July 1 to new quarters on the south side of Main Street, between Fifth and Sixth…
The Fitzpatrick Building by Nancy Watts - The Fitzpatrick Building (Creel Furniture) at 603 W. Main was built in 1913 by Frank Pierce. Link and Haire were the Architects. The original owner was J.B. Fitzpatrick from Great Falls. “J.B. Fitzpatrick of Great Falls bought the Mrs. Mary Weistaner property, consisting of four lots, two facing Main Street with a frontage of 100…
The Power Mercantile Building by Nancy Watts - The Power Mercantile building (Reid’s) was built in 1901 at 302 W. Main. “Work is progressing rapidly on the Power Mercantile’s new building and the foundation is almost completed. The original 15 windows in the front of the second story have been changed and nine large windows with a lower sash 60 X 54 substituted.…
The Bank of Fergus County by Nancy Watts -   The Bank of Fergus County (originally built in 1883) at 223 W. Main (Megahertz) was rebuilt in 1904 after a disastrous fire damaged it when the Lewistown Hotel next door burned to the ground January 16, 1904. “The Bank of Fergus County Lewistown Montana will receive sealed proposals up to noon of May 26,…
The Allen and Robinson Building by Nancy Watts - The Allen and Robinson building (Midway/El Rancho Alegre) at 414-416 W. Main was built in 1903 by J.W. Foster. “John R. Cook yesterday sold to Charles Allen and Grant Robinson of Kendall, 3 lots on Main Street between Lehman’s Department Store (corner of 5th and Main) and the Golden Rule Store.” (Fergus County Argus, Jun.…
The Montana Building by Nancy Watts - The Montana Building was built in 1916 at 222-224 W. Main (now First Bank) by the Sound Construction Company of Seattle. Link and Haire were the architects. The original Montana Hardware store, built in 1892, was located on this site until it burned down in 1915. “The contractors are only waiting now to assemble their…
The Hopkins Bros Building by Nancy Watts - The Hopkins Bros. Grocery at 117 W. Main (now Big Spring Spa; in 1940’s it was Cy’s Alabam Café) was built in 1900 by Archibald Hopkins. “Archibald Hopkins, a Welsh immigrant, settled in the Cottonwood area on his arrival in Central Montana around 1875 and raised produce which was freighted to surrounding communities. By 1899,…
The Bank-Electric Building by Nancy Watts - Bank-Electric Building at 501 W. Main was built in 1913. It was designed by Wasmansdorff and Eastman and built by Serrie Bros of Billings. The former building on the lot was the Lewistown Furniture Store (formerly the W.J. Wells Co. men’s clothing store) “President Hilger of the First National [Bank]….said several weeks ago the officials…
The Slater Block by Nancy Watts - The Slater Block was located at 409 W. Main (TV Appliance). It was designed by Wasmansdorff and Eastman and built in 1914 by Piper Construction Co. Christopher Slater came with his sons, Christopher John (father of Harold Slater), Henry N., and William A. Slater, to Lewistown around 1904 and opened the Palace Meat Market at…
The Crowley Block by Nancy Watts - The Crowley Block at 311 W. Main was built in 1913. Daniel M. Crowley came to Lewistown early in the 1880s and established the Lewistown Livery Stable and also Crowley and Kemp’s Saloon next to the stable. “Crowley and Kemp have begun the erection of a first-class stable convenient of their saloon.” (Mineral Argus, Oct…
The Warr-Lane Building by Nancy Watts -   Warr-Lane building 309 W. Main (now Studio Milan; earlier it was Krings Riverside Floral) was built in 1913. Link and Haire were the architects. Gagnon and Co. of Billings was the contractor. In 1892, Austin Warr (1866-1917) helped to establish the Montana Hardware Co., married Helen Lehman in 1895, and worked at the Bank…
I.O.O.F & Knights of Pythias Building by Nancy Watts - The I.O.O.F. and the Knights of Pythias Building on the corner of Main Street and 1st Avenue South was built in 1914 by Piper Construction Co. It was designed by Wasmansdorff and Eastman. Two fraternal organizations, the Odd Fellows and the Knights of Pythias joined together to erect this building. “The two orders will, it…
The Imislund Building by Nancy Watts - The Imislund Building located at 508 W. Main was built in 1906 by the Tubb Bros. “Herbert P. Imislund was a prominent Lewistown businessman, city clerk and president of the Montana and Eastern Corporation, a large investment concern.” (Montana Historical and Architectural Survey by Ellen Sievert). In 1906, “Mr. and Mrs. Imislund, who have been…
McDonald and Charters Building by Nancy Watts - PHOTO CAPTION: The McDonald and Charters building (built in 1905) is in the center of the photo where it says “Lewistown Bakery”. The Building on the right is the First National Bank (earlier called the Judith Basin Bank-built in 1899). The third building in the group is the Imislund Building, built in 1906 (behind the light pole).…
The Lewistown Public Library by Nancy Watts - The Lewistown Public Library was built in 1905 by the Tubb Brothers (T.J. Tubb, architect). Using native sandstone, (the sandstone quarry was within a mile of Lewistown) it was built from a donation ($10,000) from Andrew Carnegie. The land was part of the Stafford Addition and bought from Mr. Stafford for $600. The library went…
Judith Basin Bank building by Nancy Watts - The Judith Basin Bank building at 502 W. Main (formerly the “Home Plate” and “Flaments”) was built in 1899 at the corner of Main Street and 5th Avenue North. “Bricklaying was commenced on the new bank building Monday. The new institution will be known as the Judith Basin Bank.” (Fergus Co. Argus, Jan. 25, 1899).…
The Stafford Building by Nancy Watts - The Stafford Building at 316 W. Main was built in 1891 by George M. Stafford. George Stafford started his harness and saddlery business in 1886 in Lewistown. He was the Fergus County Surveyor and owned many lots in Lewistown (The Stafford Addition). He was married to Allis Watson. His first building at that address burned…
Lewistown Drug Store by Nancy Watts -   The Lewistown Drug Store was located at 324 W. Main on the corner of Main and 4th Ave. North (H & R Block). It is one of the oldest buildings in Lewistown, being built in 1885. The ad for the drug store on Aug. 18, 1887 stated: “the only drug store in Judith Basin;…
The Mackey Building by Nancy Watts - The Mackey Building (Montana Tavern) at 202 W. Main was owned by Thomas A. Mackey and cost $20,000 and was built with bricks from the Lewistown Brick and Tile Co. “Plans are now being prepared by Wasmansdorff and Eastman for a two-story, 50 x90 business building at the corner of Second Avenue and Main Street.…
The Knerr-Tubb building (Wiers store) by Nancy Watts - The Knerr-Tubb building (Wiers store) at 112-116 W. Main was built in 1909 by Tubb Brothers. Thomas Tubb, Christian Knerr and Levi Knerr were the original owners of the Tubb-Knerr building. “The Knerr-Tubb Block is remembered by many as the Armory Hall, where for many years, Central Montana residents “tripped the light fantastic” at charity…
Lewistown Historical Preservation Commission Awards Ceremony - The Lewistown Historical Preservation Commission will have an awards ceremony at the Library (701 W. Main) on Friday, May 11th beginning at 6:30 p.m. Awards will be given to recognize special achievement and outstanding assistance to the preservation effort in the Lewistown area. The keynote speaker will be C.J. Bailey speaking about the Croatian Stone…
Lewistown Historical Preservation Commission Awards Ceremony - The Lewistown Historical Preservation Commission will have an awards ceremony at the Library (701 W. Main) on Friday, May 11th beginning at 6:30 p.m. Awards will be given to recognize special achievement and outstanding assistance to the preservation effort in the Lewistown area. The keynote speaker will be C.J. Bailey speaking about the Croatian Stone…
The Fitzpatrick Building (Creel Furniture) by Nancy Watts - The Fitzpatrick Building (Creel Furniture) at 603 W. Main was built in 1913 by Frank Pierce. Link and Haire were the Architects. The original owner was J.B. Fitzpatrick from Great Falls. “J.B. Fitzpatrick of Great Falls bought the Mrs. Mary Weistaner property, consisting of four lots, two facing Main Street with a frontage of 100…
The Montana Building by Nancy Watts - The Montana Building was built in 1916 at 222-224 W. Main (now First Bank) by the Sound Construction Company of Seattle. Link and Haire were the architects. The original Montana Hardware store, built in 1892, was located on this site until it burned down in 1915. “The contractors are only waiting now to assemble their…
Historic Lewistown Downtown Parade - Parade on the north side of the 300 block on Main Street. The Power Mercantile building (302 W. Main) is on the far right. Some of the other buildings are still there today. Lewistown Public Library Photo #4541. For more historic photos: http://montanamemory.org/contributors/LewistownPublicLibrary
Central Montana Genealogy Workshop Oct 14 - In celebration of their 40th Anniversary, the Central Montana Genealogy Society will be holding a Local History Workshop in the Upstairs Meeting Room of the Library on Saturday, October 14 from 1-4 pm. Talk with genealogists, historians and our local history librarian about how to go about finding Central Montana information.  Records include death, marriage,…
Ferris Wheel on Lewistown Main Street - View of a Ferris wheel on Main Street, 400 block south side. The building on the left foreground was the Mint Bar on the corner of 4th Avenue South and Main Street (401 W. Main) with the tiny office of Dr. E.A. Long, Dentist next to it. The Mint Bar was replaced by the Gem…
Circus Parade - Lewistown circus parade on Main Street from 1st Avenue South.
Lewistown, Montana - Corner of Main Street and 4th Ave North
Elks Convention 1915 - Lewistown, Montana. View of the south side of the 400 block on Main Street. Elks Convention 1915. Lewistown Public Library photo #7191. For more historical photos go to: http://montanamemory.org/contributors/LewistownPublicLibrary
Historical photo Lewistown Big Springs Water Supply - Lewistown, Montana. Photo 5317 Lewistown Public Library. For more historical photos go to: http://montanamemory.org/contributors/LewistownPublicLibrary
Lewistown Historic Fire Department - Lewistown, Montana. Fire department in front of the old City Hall. Photo #487 Lewistown Public Library. For more historical photos go to: http://montanamemory.org/contributors/LewistownPublicLibrary
Judith Mountains Camp Kiwanis - Judith Mountains, near Lewistown, Montana. Photo #7924 Lewistown Public Library. For more historical photos go to: http://montanamemory.org/contributors/LewistownPublicLibrary
Lewistown Main Street Parade - Lewistown, Montana. Parade on Main Street at the corner of 5th Avenue South. The Lewistown Furniture co was replaced by the Bank-Electric Building in 1913. Photo 3084, Lewistown Public Library. For more historical photos go to: http://montanamemory.org/contributors/LewistownPublicLibrary Photo courtesy of Lewistown Public Library
Old Fergus High School - Lewistown, Montana. View from 5th Avenue looking up Water Street with the old Fergus County High School in the background. Photo#5359, Lewistown Public LIbrary. The Lewistown Public Library has put more historical photographs, historical books and documents on the Montana Memory Project at http://montanamemory.org/contributors/LewistownPublicLibrary.  
Historical image - Lewistown, Montana. Main Street buildings in the background are on the north side of the 300 block. Lewistown Public Library photo #357. The Lewistown Public Library has put more historical photographs, historical books and documents on the Montana Memory Project at http://montanamemory.org/contributors/LewistownPublicLibrary: Provided by Preservation Officer & Local History Librarian Nancy Watts
Historical image – South side of the 400 block - Lewistown, Montana. South side of the 400 block. Lewistown Public Library photo 535. For more historical photos go to http://montanamemory.org/contributors/LewistownPublicLibrary. Provided by Historian Nancy Watts
Historical image of 100 block of Main Street, Lewistown. Provided by historian Nancy Watts - Lewistown, Montana. View of Main Street on the south side of the 100 block. All of the buildings are still existing today. From left to right the buildings are: Green Block (111 W. Main built 1909); Hopkins Block (113-115 W. Main built 1909); Hopkins Bros Grocery (117 W. Main built in 1900); Building owned by…
A Wealth of History to be Found at the Library - The Lewistown Public Library provides many historical resources for your use.

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