Early Residents of Butte, Montana

Among the prominent citizens of Butte is Dr E. D. Leavitt, a native of New Hampshire. He is a graduate of the Wesleyan University of Middletown, Connecticut, and Harvard Medical College. After passing three years in Colorado, beginning with the Pike’s Peak excitement of 1859, in 1862 he removed to Montana, where he has ever since resided, being now a permanent resident of Butte, and giving his sole attention to his large and increasing practice. In 1888 he was nominated by the republicans as delegate to congress. In 1888 he was elected president of the Medical association of Montana. During 1888 and 1889 he has been and is at present health-officer of Butte. By Gov. Leshe he was lately appointed one of the board of territorial medical examiners. Few men in southern Montana are more widely respected either professionally or for their unselfish devotion to the interests of their adopted state.

John L. Murphy was born in Platte County, Missouri, in 1842, and educated in a private school. At the age of 17 years he went to Denver, where he was clerk in a store for a year and a half, after which he went into business for himself. He took a situation subsequently as an agent of Holladay’s express, but finally purchased teams, and began freighting across the plains to Colorado. 1864 he came to Virginia City, Montana, with a train loaded with goods, moving in 1865 to Helena, and being also largely interested in transportation throughout the territory. He is principal of a mercantile firm doing business in Helena, Deer Lodge, and Fort Benton.

A. G. Clarke, born at Terre Haute, Indiana, in 1822, remained in that state until 19 years of age, when he went to St Joseph, Missouri, to engage in mercantile pursuits. In 1864 he came to Virginia City, Montana, bringing a stock of hardware, and opening a store at that place. In 1865 he removed to Helena and established a hardware business under the firm name of Clarke & Conrad, which in 1866 became Clarke, Conrad, & Miller, but after a time Clarke, Conrad, & Curtin. Mr Clarke is also interested in an extensive dry goods business, and in stock raising.

J. S. Hammond was born in Abington, Massachusetts, in 1844, and immigrated to California with his father’s family in 1862, where he engaged in teaching in Joaquin County. He subsequently attended the state normal school, graduating from that institution in 1868, soon after which he was appointed principal of the Stockton high school, which position he held for 4 years, when he resigned to take a course of medical lectures, having been reading medicine during his years of teaching. He graduated from Cooper medical institute San Francisco in 1873, since which date he has practised his profession. I 1885 he settled permanently in Butte.

George W. Irwin was born in Chicago, Illinois, in 1844. He was the son a railroad contractor, and lived in many places east and west. In 1858 he went to Kansas, and in 1863 came to Virginia City, Montana Three years later he removed to Deer Lodge, where he was appointed U. S. Collector of Internal Revenue. In 1876 he was appointed Clerk of the U. S. District Court, which office he filled until 1881 in Deer Lodge, but the office being moved to Butte, he removed with it. In 1882 he was elected sheriff of Silver Bow County for one term. In 1889 he was appointed U. S. Marshal for Montana by President Harrison. He was a member of the vigilance committee of 1863, and has had mining interests in the territory from about that period, being thoroughly devoted to the welfare of his adopted state.

Charles S. Warren was born in La Salle County, Illinois, Nov. 20, 1817. He was son of S. B. Warren, born in Cold Spring, Putnam County, New York, in 1813, whose English grandfather settled there in 1744. C. S. Warren received a common school education, and when 15 years of age went to Colorado, but returned to Illinois the same year and entered the union army, serving; the 132d and 147th Illinois. Volunteer Infantry, being discharged as first sergeant of co. C of the latter regiment at Savannah, Georgia, Jan. 20, 1866. In April following he started for Montana, arriving in August at Virginia City by bull train. Going to Helena, Deer Lodge, and French Gulch, in Silver Bow County, he mined for 5 years. He served as deputy sheriff and sheriff for 6 years in Deer Lodge County. In 1872 he married Miss Mittie Avery, of Silver Bow, and on the expiration of his term of office removed to Butte, where he has his permanent residence, and is engaged in various enterprises. He was the first police magistrate of Butte, clerk of the district court for 5 years, and deputy internal revenue collector under T. P. Fuller. In 1877, when a volunteer company was organized at Butte to defend the settlements from the Nez Percé under Chief Joseph, he was made 1st Lieutenant of the company under Capt. W. A. Clark. He was one of the founders of the Inter-Mountain newspaper, in which he still retains an interest, and owns in the Amy, Silversmith, and Poorman mines. In 1886 he was elected department commander of the Grand Army of the Republic in Montana. He ran for mayor of Butte on the republican ticket, which was defeated; and one month later was elected a member of the state constitutional convention. He is also the Montana member of the national republican committee.

C. F. Lloyd was born at Guttenberg, Sweden, in July 1851, and came with his parents to the United States when a year old, being brought up in Wisconsin and Iowa. In 1869 he was appointed a cadet at West Point, graduating from there in 1873. He was assigned to duty in the west. being stationed at various posts until 1883, when he resigned to accept the position of manager of the Northwestern Forwarding Co. in Butte. He is the owner also of a ranche 2 miles from Butte, which he regards as his home.

James W. Forbis was born in Platt County, Missouri, in 1859, and came to Montana with his father in 1864, who was the pioneer agriculturist ot the territory, settling on a farm 4 miles from Helena in 1865 where James was brought up, receiving his education in the public schools of Helena. In 1881 he removed to Butte and commenced the study of the law in the office of Judge Knowles, one of the ablest members of the Montana bar. He was admitted to practice in 1884, and has devoted himself to the profession ever since. He served a term as member of the city council, and in 1885 was nominated by the democratic party for city attorney, but the ticket was defeated.

Hon. Lee Mantle was born at Birmingham, Eng., Dec. 13, 1854, soon after the death of his father. His mother became a convert to the Mormon faith, and came with her children to Salt Lake City, where, discovering that she had been grossly deceived by the Mormon missionaries, she renounced their religion. Her condition was an unhappy one, and her children were forced to labor for their support as soon as old enough to perform any kind of service. Lee worked on farms for his board at first, and then for small wages, never being sent to school a day in his life, all his book-knowledge being acquired by night study at home. In 1872 he went to Idaho, and drove a team for B. F. White, afterwards governor of Montana. Returning to Utah, he was given a position as line-repairer for the Western Union Telegraph Company, while in this situation learning to be an operator, and being given charge of the office at Corinne. In 1877 he came to Butte, and acted as agent for Wells, Fargo, & Co. until 1880, when he established an insurance and real estate business. He is interested in various mining companies, and was one of the founders and the manager of the Inter-Mountain the most prominent republican newspaper in Montana. He was a member of the first city council elected in Butte, and in 1880 was elected to the territorial legislature, and re-elected in 1884, being chosen speaker of the house by the unanimous vote of the republican members, who were in a majority.


Bancroft, Hubert H. Bancroft Works, Volume 31, History Of Washington, Idaho, and Montana, 1845-1889. San Francisco: The History Company. 1890.

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