Medora in Billings County, North Dakota — The American Midwest (Upper Plains)
Margaret Barr was born in Ireland on September 15, 1853, and immigrated to Iowa with her family about 1864. In April 1871, she married John Lloyd Roberts from Wales, and soon became a pioneer wife to a cattle dealer and butcher.
The couple arrived at Bismarck in 1877 and by 1882 Lloyd was foreman of the Eaton Brothers’ Custer Trail Ranch south of Medora. In 1883 the family built Sloping Bottom Ranch about 10 miles south of Medora, raising sheep, cattle and horses.
In 1886, her husband John traveled to Cheyenne, Wyoming Territory, with about $2,000 to buy cattle. He was never heard from again and Margaret believed he was killed for his money. As a widow with five young daughters, she continued to operate the ranch, eventually filing a homestead claim in 1899.
Margaret exemplified the pioneer rectitude and persistence that her neighbor Theodore Roosevelt so admired. He described her as “the most wonderful little woman in the Bad Lands.”
Margaret eventually moved to Dickinson, North Dakota. She died on April 9, 1938 at the age of 84.
(Marker Number 14.)
Location. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Medora ND 58645, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Medora Education (here, next to this marker); Medora Town Hall (within shouting distance of this marker); Roberts Hall (within shouting distance of this marker); The President Returns (within shouting distance of this marker); Medora Depot & Railroad (within shouting distance of this marker); Hunting and Trapping (within shouting distance of this marker); Custer Trail (within shouting distance of this marker); Stockmens State Bank (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Medora.
More about this marker. Three different photographs of Margaret Barr Roberts appear on the marker. Her husband, John Lloyd Roberts is with her in one picture, and she is mounted on a horse in another. The photo of Margaret on the horse has a caption of “Margaret Barr Roberts was an excellent horseback rider.”
Categories. • Women •
Credits. This page was last revised on April 16, 2018. This page originally submitted on September 1, 2015, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 236 times since then and 23 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on September 1, 2015, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.