As a child Grace had an adventuresome life, living on both the East and the West Coast, San Francisco before the great earthquake, traveling cross country by train, enjoying Wilkinson cousins in New York City and Curtin cousins in Decorah. She went on many hunting and fishing trips with her father and had considerable skill as a marksman. This enthusiasm for living did not decrease with her marriage. She was a gracious hostess and a loving and devoted wife. She became the eyes for two when Harry’s vision deteriorated, but with such skill that few realized he was without sight. Her enthusiasm did not diminish after Harry's death. At 81 years she traveled to Italy with Henry and his wife to spend 4 months with their family in Trieste, Italy. This was a city of 360,000 located on the Italian/Yugoslav border. From there she participated in many family travels to Yugoslovia, Venice, Milan and other areas.

Grace returned to Decorah with her family in 1966, sailing on the Italian luxury liner Cristofo Columbo from Trieste. She lived the remainder of her life in the family home at 812 Maple Avenue (now the Montgomery Mansion Bed and Breakfast). Grace died in the Decorah hospital 24 Feb 1972. All the Montgomerys are buried in the Montgomery plot in the old Montgomery area of Phelps Cemetery.

Montgomery, Michael Henry and Sarah (Richardson)

(Henry Montgomery)

Bio Photo

Sarah Lang (Richardson) Montgomery

Michael Henry Montgomery, son of Jehiel Halsey and Emily (Biggs) Montgomery, was born in Lodi, NY 25 Aug 1840. The family moved to Aurora, IL where he attended the Clark Institute. He then attended a business school and a pharmacy school in Chicago before moving to Decorah in 1867, joining his father in the family drug store. He married Sarah Lang Richardson 19 Apr 1871 in Aurora. She was the daughter of Charles Frederic and Ruth

Chever Shepard Richardson. The Richardson family were early settlers (1635) in Salem and the Woburn area of MA. They were a large family which prospered and married into families of like nature. Sarah’s Grandfather Shepard was captain of a vessel that sailed to China and the South Seas. After his early death his widow moved to Aurora and brought with her a rosewood, square, grand piano. Sarah brought this with her when she married and moved to Decorah as she and their 5 children all had special musical talents. The piano remained in the family until 1972 when it was sold to the Russel Kepharts of Decorah.

Bio Photo

Michael Henry Montgomery

Michael and Sarah had five children: Charles, Matilda, Sarah, Henry and Ruth.

Charles Frederick (27 May 1872-26 Jan 1931) married Eleanor Lessing of Minneapolis, (deceased). No children. Matilda Clark (2 Aug 1875-4 Mar 1955 in Missoula, MT) married Hogan and had 2 children Marjorie and Doris Ruth; then she married a McCoy and had no children. Marjorie married Lawrence Sandsmark, Ronan, MT (deceased) and Doris Ruth of Missoula, MT was unmarried, (deceased) Sarah Lang (18 Mar 1877-23 Aug 1967) married Frank Reum (deceased). They had 2 sons who died in infancy and Charles and Richardson. Charles Philip Reum lives in Honolulu, HI and Richardson Phelps Reum lived in Medford, OR. (deceased) Henry “Harrv" Biaas (24 Nov 1882-16 Jul 1966) married Grace Wilkinson of Chicago, IL and had 2 children. Ruth Shepard (22 Apr 1884-1 Apr 1976) married Noble Day, McGregor, IA and New Orleans, LA. No children.

The M. H. Montgomerys were members of the Decorah Congregational Church. Mrs. Montgomery was an early and active member of Fortnightly Club. M.H. was a 50 year member of the Masons, belonging to the Great Light Lodge #131; members of the Knights of Pythias in 1886


Complete OCR transcription

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