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Billings in Yellowstone County, Montana — The American West (Mountains)
 

I.D. O'Donnell Home

 
 
I.D. O'Donnell Home Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, September 16, 2020
1. I.D. O'Donnell Home Marker
Inscription.  Ignatius D. O’Donnell came to Montana Territory from Michigan in 1882 to seek his fortune. A pioneer in crop development and irrigation methods, O’Donnell came to be called the “Alfalfa King,” introducing both alfalfa and the sugar beet plant to the Yellowstone Valley. O’Donnell, his wife Louise, and family of six children moved into this spacious twelve-room home on New Year’s Day, 1905. The beautiful residence, designed by prominent Montana architects Link and Haire, was located on what was then the edge of town. A three-story octagonal turret, bay windows, narrow siding, stained glass, and diagonal window panes make the home a noteworthy example of Victorian period architecture. Within the home, floors and woodwork that retain their original finish and sliding pocket doors are a credit to the fine craftsmanship of builders Eames and Sawyer. In 1914, O’Donnell became supervisor of irrigation for the U.S. Reclamation Commission, which he helped organize, and in 1919 he was designated “Montana’s Best Farmer.” O’Donnell contributed to all facets of the early Billings community and when he died in 1948, his legacy extended
I.D. O'Donnell Home image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, September 16, 2020
2. I.D. O'Donnell Home
from the irrigation canals and sugar beet industry to civic enterprises such as the county fair, public library, city parks, and Rocky Mountain College. Helene Wallis, O’Donnell’s eldest daughter, resided in the home from 1905 to 1988, raising her own family here. This exceptional, well-maintained residence remains in the O’Donnell family, its turn-of-the-twentieth-century appearance remarkably unchanged.
 
Erected by Montana Historical Society.
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: AgricultureArchitectureCharity & Public WorkNotable Buildings.
 
Location. 45° 46.809′ N, 108° 31.095′ W. Marker is in Billings, Montana, in Yellowstone County. Marker is at the intersection of Clark Avenue and 1st Street West, on the right when traveling west on Clark Avenue. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 105 Clark Avenue, Billings MT 59101, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Moss Mansion (about 600 feet away, measured in a direct line); West Side School (approx. 0.4 miles away); 901 North 32 Street (approx. half a mile away); The Dude Rancher Lodge (approx. half a mile away); Pouder Furniture Building (approx. half a mile away); Austin North House
I.D. O'Donnell Home and Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, September 16, 2020
3. I.D. O'Donnell Home and Marker
(approx. half a mile away); Garfield School (approx. half a mile away); Babcock Theater (approx. 0.6 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Billings.
 
Also see . . .  O'Donnell, I. D. (Ignatius Daniel), 1860-1948 -- SNAC Cooperative. He popularized the raising of such crops as alfalfa and sugar beets and helped establish modern methods of irrigation and reclamation on a national scale. He won national acclaim in 1919 when the Country Gentlemen named him "Best Farmer in Montana"... (Submitted on February 11, 2021, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California.) 
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on February 11, 2021. It was originally submitted on February 11, 2021, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California. This page has been viewed 44 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on February 11, 2021, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California.
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Mar. 5, 2021