Saturday, June 16, 2012



Born: 08 June 1847, Holstein, Germany- Died: 06 July 1927 Deer Lodge, Montana


Written by Mrs. Granville (Allis Belle) Stuart, for WPA Montana Writers Material, December 18, 1940-Original file at Montana State University

In the very early days, Nick Bielenberg was out on the range when he learned of a big wedding; Eph Thomas was marrying one of Morgan Evans daughters. This was a real affair. The bride was to wear white satin gown, veil and orange blossoms and a preacher would perform the ceremony. Everything was imported from “The States.” This was in the early sixties. When Nick arrived in Deer Lodge everybody in town had gone to the wedding. His partner, Harvey McKinstry had gone and he had dressed up in the company party clothes and Nick had to take second best which wasn’t so good. He fixed up as best he could, Nick was a very large man and average size would not do. He about had to have his own clothes. His horse was played out and he had to go to Con Kohrs ranch for a fresh one and by the time he arrived the party was in full swing.

The first thing that struck Nick’s eye was a very pretty young girl, a stranger. Nick was spellbound. He had never in his life seen a girl so beautiful. She was a dainty piece of humanity. She was like a beautiful Dresden doll. He wanted to be introduced at once but not in the clothes he wore. He hunted up Harvey McKinstry and after much pleading induces him to trade clothes, just long enough to allow him to be introduced to the new girl and try for a dance with her.

All dressed up in the black broad cloth Nick was a swell looker, and he soon received an introduction to the little beauty but had to wait for several dances before she was disengaged. The admiration was mutual and Nick persuaded Miss Annie Bogk to go to supper with him. While having such a good time McKinstry was fuming in the background, motioning to Nick to come out whenever he could catch his eye but Nick oblivious to it all. Finally McKinstry wrote a note on a piece of brown paper. “You damn horse thief if you don’t come out here with my clothes, I’ll help Con Kohrs hang you”

Nick stayed with the girl until the party was over.

The next big wedding was the Bride in white satin and orange blossoms and a Minister to perform the ceremony was Annie Bogk and Nick Bielenberg, one of the happiest marriages imaginable. Nick would tell the story and wind up with, “I ran the risk of getting hung to get my wife.”

No comments: