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Near Philipsburg in Granite County, Montana — The American West (Mountains)
 

Superintendentís House

“Silver Queen City”

 
 
Superintendentís House Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, August 9, 2009
1. Superintendentís House Marker
Inscription. By 1899, this house stood at the head of Magnolia Avenue, or “Silk Stocking Row,” where the elite of Granite lived. The first floor housed the living quarters for the Superintendent of the Granite Mountain Mining Co. The second floor may have originally housed the mine office, accessed through a door in the back reached by a plank bridgeway from the hillside. No inside connection has ever existed between the two floors.

From 1889 to 1893, Superintendent Thomas Weir lived in this house. A capable manager, Weir did much to improve living and working conditions for the miners. Sweat soaked miners would emerge from the 1,000 ft shaft into winterís bitter cold, prime candidates for pneumonia. Without antibiotics, the death rate was high. Weir built a “drying house” and a hospital, had bunkhouses cleaned and fumigated, and gave his men one day off a week and good wages--$3.50 a day.

“Silver Queen City”
The Granite Mountain Lode claim was recorded in 1875, and in 1879 a piece of high-grade “ruby” silver was found. With financial backing from St. Louis investors, exploration efforts increased, without a lot of success. In 1882, the investors sent word to stop work—they would put no more money into the mine. One story goes that the pony express messenger was delayed by a blizzard

Superintendentís House Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, August 9, 2009
2. Superintendentís House Marker
and during this reprieve the big strike was made. The boom was on and before long, three mills were built to handle the flood of ore. In 1889, the Granite Mountain and Bi-Metallic Mines produced $250,000 - $275,000 a month. One mine alone produced 6,000 lbs of silver and 13.3 lbs of gold a week.

In 1892, 3,200 people lived in Granite, with another 2,000 or so at the mills nearby. Repeal of the Sherman Silver Purchase Act, which had guaranteed government purchase of silver resulted in the Silver Panic of 1893. Mines and mills closed and 3,000 people left in 24 hours. The mines later reopened but never again held the distinction they once had. The last of Graniteís residents left in the 1930s
 
Location. 46° 18.97′ N, 113° 14.762′ W. Marker is near Philipsburg, Montana, in Granite County. Marker is on Magnolia Street. Click for map. Granite is located approx. 4 miles from Philipsburg, out the dirt/gravel Granite Mountain Road. Inquire at the Pintler Ranger Station or locally. Follow the signs to Granite. Park in the parking lot, it is foot traffic only. A walking guide may be available. The marker is located on Granite Ghost Walk trail. Street names do not matter very much in Granite as they are all unsigned. Marker is in this post office area: Philipsburg MT 59858, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers

The Superintendentís House image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, August 9, 2009
3. The Superintendentís House
are within 3 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Granite Mountain Mining Company Office (about 500 feet away, measured in a direct line); Mill A and B (about 600 feet away); Granite Ghost Town (about 600 feet away); Ruby Shaft (about 600 feet away); Miner's Union Hall (approx. 0.2 miles away); Bi-Metallic Aerial Tramway (approx. 0.3 miles away); Morse Hall (approx. 2.4 miles away); Weinstein Building (approx. 2.5 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Philipsburg.
 
Additional comments.
1. Pony Express Messenger
Marker refers to the Pony Express messenger in 1882. The Pony Express ceased operation in 1861.
    — Submitted November 18, 2011, by Bill Pfingsten of Bel Air, Maryland.

 
Categories. Settlements & Settlers
 
The Superintendentís House image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, August 9, 2009
4. The Superintendentís House
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California. This page has been viewed 343 times since then and 4 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on , by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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