Growing Up in Montana During the Great Depression (Post #3/3)

Posted: September 10, 2013 in William L."Bill" McGee
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Doing research... (Author photo)

Doing research…

In September 2013, Bill and I visited his home state of Montana. Our objective: A research trip to fill in the blanks for Bill’s family history in preparation for the eBook Growing Up in Montana During the Great Depression: A Memoir.

Destination #3 – Montana’s capital, Helena (pop 29,351, elev 4,090 feet)

The Montana Historical Society in Helena had a wealth of information on Bill’s Uncle Clyde M. Lyon and Frederick A. Lyon. We’re researching Bill’s relationship to the latter Lyon; however, in the meantime, we gathered this information about the man.

Frederick A. Lyon (sitting, right), Mary Elizabeth Lyon (sitting, left), and their seven children, Forest Grove, MT, 1897. (Author collection)

Frederick A. Lyon (sitting, right), Mary Elizabeth Lyon (sitting, left), and their seven children, Forestgrove, MT, 1897. (Author collection)

Frederick A. Lyon arrived in Montana in 1879 and, a few years later, went to Forestgrove, near Lewistown. He courageously began his career as a homesteader on what was practically desert land. His operations grew and prospered, and, by 1921, he owned 2,000 acres of valuable and productive land. He was one of the pioneers in the business of alfalfa growing in Fergus County.

Today: The site of the former Frederick A. Lyon ranch, Forestgrove, MT, 1990s. (Author photo)

The Frederick A. Lyon ranch, Forestgrove, MT, late 1800s. (Author collection)

To be continued in Spring 2014… “God willin’ and the Creek don’t rise”. 

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