This collection contains interviews about the founding and early history of Missoula, Montana. The interviews were conducted between 1970 and 1972 by grade school teacher Lenora Koelbel as research for her book Missoula: The Way It Was: A Portrait of an Early Western Town (1972; revised edition, 2004). The interviewees discuss some of the early buildings, businesses, founding families, and politics related to Missoula. Topics include the pest house, poor farm, Greenough Mansion, aldermanic government, Chinese immigration, and the red-light district. The original interviews are held as Oral History collection OH 027 at Archives and Special Collections, Maureen and Mike Mansfield Library, the University of Montana.
This collection includes 4 interviews.
Audra Browman discusses Missoula, Montana history. She talks about 19th and early 20th maps, paintings, and photographs that depict the city’s layout. She also discusses how Missoula served as a temporary state capital in 1889. Browman talks about the establishment of the Missoula city government, ... Read More
Clara M. Jones
Clara Jones reminisces about life in Missoula, Montana, during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. She talks about the pest house and the poor farm that were located in Missoula, and describes working at the poor farm when she was 17. She recalls funeral ... Read More
Frances Janes discusses various aspects of the history of Missoula, Montana, that she recalled from her childhood and her own research. She talks about large city fires and the locations of old stores and government buildings. Janes discusses the firemen’s ball and various photographs that ... Read More
Grant Higgins, grandson of Missoula founder and businessman Christopher Higgins, discusses the Higgins family legacy in Missoula, Montana and their original homestead. He talks about growing up in Missoula and recalls the town’s night life and social activities during the early 20th century such as ... Read More