Not as busy today but the second building on the right in the old picture survives. So does the building on the opposite corner where the car with the bug-eye headlights is parked.
Texas Bill needs to play Baker soon.
Ken in Texas
Baker was the big new town on the Milwaukee railroad which built west in 1907/8/9 to provide service to the west. The railroad dammed up Sandstone creek to form Baker Lake as a source of Alkali free water for the steamers. There was a large coal mine developed about 20 miles west to provide coal. The Milwaukee built from the east, crossing the Missouri at Mobridge (Missouri - MO - bridge) following the winter of 1907 when they built rails on the ice and dumped thousands of yards of gravel on the ice so that in the spring they would have piles of gravel to work off of to built the concrete towers for the bridge. That bridge still stands as do most of the other large river crossing bridges. They founded a lot of towns along the railroad including the towns in western North Dakota where Herman and Freida lived , west through the bad lands and across the Little Missouri river to the farm and ranch land that started at the Montana border, built on west to Baker, when they picked up Sandstone Creek. On west to Tonquin, Plevna, Westmore & Ismay where Sandstone joined O'Fallon creek. They then followed Fallon creek to the Yellowstone crossing on the new Calypso bridge, on west to Miles City with another Yellowstone crossing and on west. It was the engineering marvel of its day, built from Aberdeen, South Dakota to Tacoma, Washington in two years. Built with no government funding to speak of and it was not a land grant railroad. It cost $250 million in 1910 dollars. Later, in 1920, they closed the mine at Westmore and electrified the line from Harlowton, Montana to Avery, Idaho and again from Wenatchee, Washington to Tacoma. The Milwaukee shut down in 1976 due to poor management and greed west of Terry, Montana but east was bought by Burlington Northern -- Warren Buffet -- and continues to be a viable railroad hauling coal, freight and grain.
The building on the right is a bank, the one across the street on the corner on the right was a bank and in the modern photo the one on the left is a bank. The vacant lot on the left was filled by the Lake Theater in 1928??, a huge theater what was the showplace of the town until VCR movies and satellite TV.
This is the Calypso bridge across the Yellowstone today. Now part of a county road.
The radiator shape and headlights resemble White. Not clear enough to tell. I'm not sure Whites used those cowl lights.
Thank you for all of the background information and the picture, or as Paul Harvey would say: "The rest of the story". Always very interesting. Bill
I second Bills comment. Thanks Stan!
Thanks, this is where the Milwaukee went west through Westmore. There are still a couple buildings left, if you look you can see the tracks -- which are still in use.
This is part of my ranch. Across the tracks below the big butte there are some old buildings, that was our house. There is more to the west that doesn't show in the pictures.
The myth perpetrated by historians today is that this country should never have been homesteaded and that only imbecels came west and were fools enough to try and make a living out here. Not so.
I have no idea how I got that big a photo to post. Anyway, this is 25 or so miles west of Baker, Sandstone creek in the foreground, Milwaukee tracks in the center, town of Westmore at the right of the photo, more ranch to the right and left of the photo. Beautiful country, Productive ranch for over 100 years.
Beautiful country and a great Model T road!
Despite its large dimensions and sharpness, Stan's picture only uses 190 kilobytes of storage, versus the 250K limit on the forum.
(Message edited by cudaman on February 28, 2016)
A truly beautiful picture, Stan. Thank you. I have saved it to one of my folders. Oh how I would like to drive a T through that delightful countryside.
Montana has no shortage of beautiful. East-to-west, north-to-south. And with a total population of 291
people in an area nearly 400 x 250 miles, there is lots of wide open "big sky" country to overwhelm the senses.
OK, maybe there are a few more than 291, but you get to thinking that number is pretty accurate when you
drive across the state ! ... which adds to the charm, I might add.
If it weren't for the stout winters, there is little to complain about in terms of environment and scenery.
Thanks for the pix, Stan. I never tire of seeing Montana.
I'll echo the others, Stan. That's a beautiful picture. Which direction are we looking at? West, I think?
I always enjoy seeing pictures of Montana like this.
Thanks for posting it, Stan.
Looks like an almost due north shot to me.
Thanks, it is about 20 degrees to the east of straight north. Montana is only slightly smaller than California with fewer than 1,000,000 people. Most of those are in the western part, especially from Whitefish down to Missoula and east to Bozeman. Billings is the largest city with about 120,000 people.
It is further from the northwest to southeast corners of Montana than it is from Chicago to New York. Several counties are larger than Connecticut.
The weak ones died or left early.
This one is looking off to the northeast from the top of the hill. The field with the hay bales is the east edge of my property.
The one below shows the hay fields to the west. The far hills to the north and the trees to the west are my boundaries, pretty much anyway.
Very nice pictures, Stan. Thank you for posting them.
In the first picture you posted above, I should have known it wasn't looking to the west since the railroad runs mostly east and west.
Ya, we know Montana is a big state, but it somehow doesn't sink in until you drive from the North Dakota border west all day, and you aren't even to the center of the state yet.
Stan, your pictures remind me of the story about the Texan who was driving around Richvale (Very small town ("Downtown" is a tractor dealer, a little cafe open ocassionaly and the Rice Grower's silos.) 15 miles west of Oroville, CA). Richvale is the home of Lundberg Rice, and lots of rice farmers. Anyway, this Texan drives up to a guy trimming the hedge in front of his house, "These rice fields all yours?" "Yep, pretty much as far as the eye can see. Say, I notice your Texas plates, what do you do out there?"
"I've got a ranch."
"Oh, how big is it?"
"Well, last time I drove my pickup across it, took me a day and a half."
The Richvale rice grower didn't blink an eye and said, "YEP! I know what that's like, I used to own a pickup like that too!"
That's why he owns all that land. He spent it on land instead of new pickups! =)
It doesn't take long to drive around this one. I have a friend that has 11 ranches in 7 counties in Montana. We were out driving around one time and he was showing me some places "close" to the home ranch -- within 35 or 40 miles. He never told me how much land he owned but said about each one how many sections it was. A section is 640 acres, the smallest one we looked at that day was "A little river place, just 4 or 5 sections." The others are bigger. We only went to four of them that day.
Mine is not that big. That's why I'm fixing carburetors and doing auctions and putting up hay and whatever else that pays something.