Friday, July 11, 2014

More family

Last night the Oregon boys arrived. They are settling in nicely. This morning there was a little game playing, before we set of for a walking tour of the Rims put on by Western Heritage Center.
Everyone found the tour interesting. There was a little Native American folklore, as well as how Billings was founded. I was pleased to finally have an answer to why Billings is laid out so strangely, not taking advantage of the beautiful Yellowstone River.

Billings is a city formed by the NP Railroad. As the railroad forged across the country the government gave them land in checkerboard fashion. Here in the valley for some reason there are two plots of land up against each other rather than corner to corner. This is now downtown Billings. The track and old depot go right along the boundary of each, one side is the Southside including Minnesota Avenue and the other side includes Montana Avenue.  Also because of the winds usually blowing west to east the industrial section was on the southeast side of the city. Poor planning didn't allow for such a large city and so rather than staying on the edge of town the industrial area became engulfed.

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