We are searching data for your request:
Upon completion, a link will appear to access the found materials.
Helena I, a wooden motor yacht was built in 1906 by Van Siant Brothers, of Port Republic, N.J., and acquired by the Navy from Dr. W. G. Hall, Trenton, N.J., in May 1917. Assigned to the 7th Naval District, she was taken to Key West, Fla., and commissioned there 7 September 1917, Otis Curry, QM 2/c in command.
Helena I operated as a harbor and coastal patrol boat in the vicinity of Key West until being decommissioned and sold 27 August 1919. Before she could be delivered to her new owner, however, the boat was wrecked 11 September 1919 in a hurricane, and was stricken from the Navy List 4 October 1919.
"I have experienced this in others and in myself, for I walked not in the way of righteousness. &hellip But the Almighty God, who sits in the court of heaven, granted what I did not deserve."
The first Life of Constantine describes its subject as "resplendent with every virtue that godliness bestows." This praise-filled biography came from the hand of Eusebius, bishop of Caesarea in Palestine, and perhaps Constantine's greatest admirer. It is the classic image that prevailed in Eastern Christianity for more than a thousand years.
Historians now debate whether "the first Christian emperor" was a Christian at all. Some think him an unprincipled power seeker. What religion he had, many argue, was at best a blend of paganism and Christianity for purely political purposes.
Certainly, Constantine held to ideals we no longer share. He knew nothing of religion without politics or politics without religion. Yet he clearly believed he was a Christian, and he looked back to a battle at the Milvian Bridge, just outside the walls of Rome, as the decisive hour in his newly found faith.
Of Constantine's early years, we know only that he was born in Illyria, a region in the Balkans. His father, Constantius Chlorus, was already a Roman official on the rise. Helena, the daughter of an innkeeper and Constantius's wife, gave birth to Constantine around A.D. 280 in Naissus, just south of the Danube. By the time Constantine was 31, he was in line to become emperor of the western empire&mdashand more.
Cyprian elected bishop of Carthage
Decius orders empire-wide persecution
Antony takes up life of solitude
Christianity made state religion of Roman Empire
In the spring of 311, with 40,000 soldiers behind him, Constantine rode toward Rome to confront an enemy whose numbers were four times his own. Maxentius, vying for supremacy in the West, waited in Rome with his Italian troops and the elite Praetorian Guard, confident no one could successfully invade the city. But Constantine's army was already overwhelming his foes in Italy as he marched toward the capital.
Maxentius turned to pagan oracles, finding a prophecy that the "enemy of the Romans" would perish. But Constantine was still miles away. So, bolstered by the prophecy, Maxentius left the city to meet his foe.
Meanwhile, Constantine saw a vision in the afternoon sky: a bright cross with the words By this sign conquer. As the story goes, Christ himself told Constantine in a dream to take the cross into battle as his standard.
Though accounts vary, Constantine apparently believed the omen to be a word from God. When he awoke early the next morning, the young commander obeyed the message and ordered his soldiers to mark their shields with the now famous Chi-Rho.
Maxentius's troops fled in disarray toward the surging Tiber. The would-be emperor attempted to escape over the wooden bridge erected to span the stream, but his own army-turned-mob, pressing through the narrow passage, forced him into the river, where he drowned by the weight of his armor.
Constantine entered Rome the undisputed ruler of the West, the first Roman emperor with a cross in his diadem.
Once supreme in the West, Constantine met Licinius, the ruler of the Balkan provinces, and issued the famous Edict of Milan that gave Christians freedom of worship and directed the governors to restore all the property seized during the severe Diocletian persecution.
Eusebius in his Church History recorded the Christian jubilation: "The whole human race was freed from the oppression of the tyrants. We especially, who had fixed our hopes upon the Christ of God, had gladness unspeakable."
Constantine's faith was still imprecise, but few questioned its authenticity. In 314 Constantine sent a message to the assembled bishops at the Council of Arles. He wrote about how God does not allow people "to wander in the shadows" but reveals to them salvation: "I have experienced this in others and in myself, for I walked not in the way of righteousness. &hellip But the Almighty God, who sits in the court of heaven, granted what I did not deserve."
For a decade, though, he wavered. For example, on the Arch of Constantine, which celebrates his Milvian Bridge victory, pagan sacrifices usually depicted on Roman monuments are absent. Then again, there are still no Christian symbols, and Victory and the Sun God are honored.
He had no desire to impose his newfound faith as a state religion. "The struggle for deathlessness," he said, "must be free." He seemed to begin where his father left off: more or less a monotheist opposed to idols, and more or less friendly toward Christians. Only through the years did his Christian convictions grow.
Public relations expert
In 323 Constantine triumphed over Licinius and became the sole ruler of the Roman world. The victory enabled Constantine to move the seat of government permanently to the East, to the ancient Greek city of Byzantium (now Istanbul). He enlarged and enriched the city at enormous expense and built magnificent churches throughout the East. The new capital was dedicated as New Rome, but everyone soon called the city Constantinople.
Christians were more populous and vocal in the East than they were in Rome, so during the last 14 years of his reign, "Bullneck" could openly proclaim himself a Christian. He proceeded to create the conditions we call "state-church" and bequeathed the ideal to Christians for over a thousand years.
In 325 the Arian controversy threatened to split the newly united empire. To settle the matter, Constantine called together a council of the bishops at Nicea, a city near the capital. He ran the meeting himself.
"You are bishops whose jurisdiction is within the church," he told them. "But I also am a bishop, ordained by God to oversee those outside the church."
Presiding at the council, Constantine was magnificent: arranging elaborate ceremony, dramatic entrances and processions, and splendid services. He was also a gifted mediator, now bringing his skill in public relations to the management of church affairs.
Unfortunately he could not follow abstract arguments or subtle issues and often found himself at a great disadvantage at these councils.
Constantine waited until death drew near to be baptized as a Christian. His decision was not unusual in a day when many Christians believed one could not be forgiven after baptism. Since the sins of worldly men, especially those with public duties, were considered incompatible with Christian virtue, some church leaders delayed baptizing such men until just before death.
He gave his sons an orthodox Christian education, and his relationship with his mother was generally happy, but he continued to act as a typical Roman emperor. He ordered the execution of his eldest son, his second wife, and his favorite sister's husband. No one seems to be able to explain fully his reasons.
While many of his actions cannot be defended, he did bid farewell to the old Roman gods and make the cross an emblem of Victory in the world.
The Cessna 172 started life as a tricycle landing gear variant of the taildragger Cessna 170, with a basic level of standard equipment. In January 1955, Cessna flew an improved variant of the Cessna 170, a Continental O-300-A-powered Cessna 170C with larger elevators and a more angular tailfin.  Although the variant was tested and certified, Cessna decided to modify it with a tricycle landing gear, and the modified Cessna 170C flew again on June 12, 1955.  To reduce the time and cost of certification, the type was added to the Cessna 170 type certificate as the Model 172.  Later, the 172 was given its own type certificate.   The 172 became an overnight sales success, and over 1,400 were built in 1956, its first full year of production. 
Early 172s were similar in appearance to the 170s, with the same straight aft fuselage and tall landing gear legs, although the 172 had a straight tailfin while the 170 had a rounded fin and rudder. In 1960, the 172A incorporated revised landing gear and the swept-back tailfin, which is still in use today.
The final aesthetic development, found in the 1963 172D and all later 172 models, was a lowered rear deck allowing an aft window. Cessna advertised this added rear visibility as "Omni-Vision." 
Production halted in the mid-1980s, but resumed in 1996 with the 160 hp (120 kW) Cessna 172R Skyhawk. Cessna supplemented this in 1998 with the 180 hp (135 kW) Cessna 172S Skyhawk SP. [ citation needed ]
The Cessna 172 may be modified via a wide array of supplemental type certificates (STCs), including increased engine power and higher gross weights. Available STC engine modifications increase power from 180 to 210 hp (134 to 157 kW), add constant-speed propellers, or allow the use of automobile gasoline. Other modifications include additional fuel tank capacity in the wing tips, added baggage compartment tanks, added wheel pants to reduce drag, or enhanced landing and takeoff performance and safety with a STOL kit.  The 172 has also been equipped with the 180 hp (134 kW) fuel injected Superior Air Parts Vantage engine. 
World records Edit
From December 4, 1958, to February 7, 1959, Robert Timm and John Cook set the world record for (refueled) flight endurance in a used Cessna 172, registration number N9172B. They took off from McCarran Airfield in Las Vegas, Nevada, and landed back at McCarran Airfield after 64 days, 22 hours, 19 minutes and 5 seconds in flight. The flight was part of a fund-raising effort for the Damon Runyon Cancer Fund.  
Cessna has historically used model years similar to a U.S. auto manufacturer, with sales of new models typically starting a few months prior to the actual calendar year.
The basic 172 appeared in November 1955 as the 1956 model and remained in production until replaced by the 172A in early 1960. It was equipped with a Continental O-300 145 hp (108 kW) six-cylinder, air-cooled engine and had a maximum gross weight of 2,200 lb (998 kg). Introductory base price was US$8,995 and a total of 4,195 were constructed over the five years. 
The 1960 model 172A introduced a swept-back tailfin and rudder, as well as float fittings. The price was US$9,450 and 1,015 were built. 
The 172B was introduced in late 1960 as the 1961 model and featured a shorter landing gear, engine mounts lengthened three inches (76 mm), a reshaped cowling, and a pointed propeller spinner.  For the first time, the "Skyhawk" name was applied to an available deluxe option package. This added optional equipment included full exterior paint to replace the standard partial paint stripes and standard avionics. The gross weight was increased to 2,250 lb (1,021 kg). 
The 1962 model was the 172C. It brought to the line an optional autopilot and a key starter to replace the previous pull-starter. The seats were redesigned to be six-way adjustable. A child seat was made optional to allow two children to be carried in the baggage area. The 1962 price was US$9,895. A total of 889 172C models were produced. 
The 1963 172D model introduced the lower rear fuselage with a wraparound Omni-Vision rear window and a one-piece windshield. Gross weight was increased to 2,300 lb (1,043 kg), where it would stay until the 172P. New rudder and brake pedals were also added. 1,146 172Ds were built. 
1963 also saw the introduction of the 172D Powermatic, powered by a 175 horsepower (130 kW) Continental GO-300E, increasing cruise speed by 11 mph (18 km/h) relative to the standard 172D. In reality this was not a new model, but rather a Cessna 175 Skylark that had been rebranded to overcome a reputation for poor engine reliability. The ploy was unsuccessful and neither the Powermatic nor the Skylark were produced again after the 1963 model year.  
The 172E was the 1964 model. The electrical fuses were replaced with circuit breakers. The 172E also featured a redesigned instrument panel. 1,401 172Es were built that year as production continued to increase. 
The 1965 model 172F introduced electrically operated flaps to replace the previous lever-operated system.  It was built in France by Reims Cessna as the F172 until 1971. These models formed the basis for the U.S. Air Force's T-41A Mescalero primary trainer, which was used during the 1960s and early 1970s as initial flight screening aircraft in USAF Undergraduate Pilot Training (UPT). Following their removal from the UPT program, some extant USAF T-41s were assigned to the U.S. Air Force Academy for the cadet pilot indoctrination program, while others were distributed to Air Force aero clubs. 
A total of 1,436 172Fs were completed. 
The 1966 model year 172G introduced a more pointed spinner and sold for US$12,450 in its basic 172 version and US$13,300 in the upgraded Skyhawk version. 1,597 were built. 
The 1967 model 172H was the last Continental O-300 powered model. It also introduced a shorter-stroke nose gear oleo to reduce drag and improve the appearance of the aircraft in flight. A new cowling was used, introducing shock-mounts that transmitted lower noise levels to the cockpit and reduced cowl cracking. The electric stall warning horn was replaced by a pneumatic one.
The 1967 model 172H sold for US$10,950 while the Skyhawk version was US$12,750.  A total of 839 172Hs were built. 
The 1968 model marked the beginning of the Lycoming-powered 172s.
The "I" model was introduced with a Lycoming O-320-E2D engine of 150 hp (112 kW), an increase of 5 hp (3.7 kW) over the Continental powerplant. The increased power resulted in an increase in optimal cruise from 130 mph (209 km/h) TAS to 131 mph (211 km/h) TAS (true airspeed). There was no change in the sea level rate of climb at 645 ft (197 m) per minute.
The 172I also introduced the first standard "T" instrument arrangement. The 172I saw an increase in production over the "H" model, with 1,206 built. 
For 1968, Cessna planned to replace the 172 with a newly designed aircraft called the 172J, featuring the same general configuration but with a more sloping windshield, a strutless cantilever wing, a more stylish interior, and various other improvements. However, the popularity of the previous 172 with Cessna dealers and flight schools prompted the cancellation of the replacement plan, and the 172J was instead introduced as the 177 and sold alongside the 172. The 172J designation was never used for a production aircraft.
The next model year was the 1969 "K" model. The 1969 172K had a redesigned tailfin cap and reshaped rear windows. Optional long-range 52 US gal (197 l) wing fuel tanks were offered. The rear windows were slightly enlarged by 16 square inches (103 cm 2 ). The 1969 model sold for US$12,500 for the 172 and US$13,995 for the Skyhawk, with 1,170 made. 
The 1970 model was still called the 172K, but sported fiberglass, downward-shaped, conical wing tips. Fully articulated seats were offered as well. Production in 1970 was 759 units. 
The 172L, sold during 1971 and 1972, replaced the main landing gear legs (which were originally flat spring steel) with tapered, tubular steel gear legs. The new gear had a width that was increased by 12 in (30 cm).  The new tubular gear was lighter, but required aerodynamic fairings to maintain the same speed and climb performance as experienced with the flat steel design. The "L" also had a plastic fairing between the dorsal fin and vertical fin to introduce a greater family resemblance to the 182's vertical fin.
The 1971 model sold for US$13,425 in the 172 version and US$14,995 in the Skyhawk version. 827 172Ls were sold in 1971 and 984 in 1972. 
The 172M of 1973–76 gained a drooped wing leading edge for improved low-speed handling. This was marketed as the "camber-lift" wing.
The 1974 172M was also the first to introduce the optional 'II' package which offered higher standard equipment, including a second nav/comm radio, an ADF and transponder. The baggage compartment was increased in size, and nose-mounted dual landing lights were available as an option. 
The 1975 model 172M sold for US$16,055 for the 172, US$17,890 for the Skyhawk and US$20,335 for the Skyhawk II .
In 1976, Cessna stopped marketing the aircraft as the 172 and began exclusively using the "Skyhawk" designation. This model year also saw a redesigned instrument panel to hold more avionics. Among other changes, the fuel and other small gauges were relocated to the left side for improved pilot readability compared with the earlier 172 panel designs. Total production of "M" models was 7306 over the four years it was manufactured. 
The Skyhawk N, or Skyhawk/100 as Cessna termed it, was introduced for the 1977 model year. The "100" designation indicated that it was powered by a Lycoming O-320-H2AD, 160 horsepower (119 kW) engine designed to run on 100-octane fuel, whereas all previous engines used 80/87 fuel. But this engine proved troublesome  and it was replaced by the similarly rated O-320-D2J to create the 1981 172P.
The 1977 "N" model 172 also introduced rudder trim as an option and standard "pre-selectable" flaps. The price was US$22,300, with the Skyhawk/100 II selling for US$29,950. 
The 1978 model brought a 28-volt electrical system to replace the previous 14-volt system. Air conditioning was an option. 
The 1979 model "N" increased the flap-extension speed to 110 knots (204 km/h). 
The "N" remained in production until 1980 when the 172P or Skyhawk P was introduced. 
There was no "O" ("Oscar") model 172, to avoid confusion with the number zero. 
The 172P, or Skyhawk P, was introduced in 1981 to solve the reliability problems of the "N" engine by replacing it with the Lycoming O-320-D2J.
The "P" model also saw the maximum flap deflection decreased from 40 degrees to 30 to allow a gross weight increase from 2,300 lb (1,043 kg) to 2,400 lb (1,089 kg). A wet wing was optional, with a capacity of 62 US gallons of fuel. 
The price of a new Skyhawk P was US$33,950, with the Skyhawk P II costing US$37,810 and the Nav/Pac equipped Skyhawk P II selling for US$42,460. 
In 1982, the "P" saw the landing lights moved from the nose to the wing to increase bulb life. The 1983 model added some minor soundproofing improvements and thicker windows. 
A second door latch pin was introduced in 1984. 
Production of the "P" ended in 1986, and no more 172s were built for eleven years as legal liability rulings in the US had pushed Cessna's insurance costs too high, resulting in dramatically increasing prices for new aircraft. [ citation needed ]
There were only 195 172s built in 1984, a rate of fewer than four per week. 
The 172Q was introduced in 1983 and given the name Cutlass to create an affiliation with the 172RG, although it was actually a 172P with a Lycoming O-360-A4N engine of 180 horsepower (134 kW). The aircraft had a gross weight of 2,550 lb (1,157 kg) and an optimal cruise speed of 122 knots (226 km/h) compared to the 172P's cruise speed of 120 knots (222 km/h) on 20 hp (15 kW) less. It had a useful load that was about 100 lb (45 kg) more than the Skyhawk P and a rate of climb that was actually 20 feet (6 m) per minute lower, due to the higher gross weight. Production ended after only three years when all 172 production stopped. 
The Skyhawk R was introduced in 1996 and is powered by a derated Lycoming IO-360-L2A producing a maximum of 160 horsepower (120 kW) at just 2,400 rpm. This is the first Cessna 172 to have a factory-fitted fuel-injected engine.
The 172R's maximum takeoff weight is 2,450 lb (1,111 kg). This model year introduced many improvements, including a new interior with soundproofing, an all new multi-level ventilation system, a standard four point intercom, contoured, energy absorbing, 26g front seats with vertical and reclining adjustments and inertia reel harnesses.
The Cessna 172S was introduced in 1998 and is powered by a Lycoming IO-360-L2A producing 180 horsepower (134 kW). The maximum engine rpm was increased from 2,400 rpm to 2,700 rpm resulting in a 20 hp (15 kW) increase over the "R" model. As a result, the maximum takeoff weight was increased to 2,550 lb (1,157 kg). This model is marketed under the name Skyhawk SP, although the Type Certification data sheet specifies it is a 172S.  
The 172S is built primarily for the private owner-operator and is, in its later years, offered with the Garmin G1000 avionics package and leather seats as standard equipment. 
As of 2009 [update] , only the S model is in production. 
Cessna introduced a retractable landing gear version of the 172 in 1980 and named it the Cutlass 172RG.
The Cutlass featured a variable-pitch, constant-speed propeller and a more powerful Lycoming O-360-F1A6 engine of 180 horsepower (130 kW). The 172RG sold for about US$19,000 more than the standard 172 of the same year and produced an optimal cruise speed of 140 knots (260 km/h), compared to 122 knots (226 km/h) for the contemporary 160 horsepower (120 kW) version. 
The 172RG did not find wide acceptance in the personal aircraft market because of higher initial and operating costs accompanied by mediocre cruising speed, but was adopted by many flight schools since it met the specific requirements for "complex aircraft" experience necessary to obtain a Commercial Pilot certificate (the role for which it was intended), at relatively low cost. Between 1980 and 1984 1,177 RGs were built, with a small number following before production ceased in 1985. [ citation needed ]
While numbered and marketed as a 172, the 172RG was actually certified on the Cessna 175 type certificate. 
Special versions Edit
The FR172 Reims Rocket was produced by Reims Aviation in France from the late 1960s to the mid-1970s. It was powered by a Rolls-Royce built, fuel-injected, Continental IO-360-H(B) 210 hp (160 kW) engine with a constant-speed propeller.  Variants included the FR172E until FR172J.
The Reims Rocket led to Cessna producing the R172K Hawk XP, a model available from 1977 to 1981 from both Wichita and Reims. This configuration featured a fuel-injected, Continental IO-360K (later IO-360KB) derated to 195 hp (145 kW) with a two-bladed, constant-speed propeller. The Hawk XP was capable of a 131-knot (243 km/h) cruise speed.
Owners claimed that the increased performance of the "XP" didn't compensate for its increased purchase price and the higher operating costs associated with the larger engine. The aircraft was well accepted for use on floats, however, as the standard 172 is not a strong floatplane, even with only two people on board, while the XP's extra power improves water takeoff performance dramatically. 
While numbered and marketed as 172s, the R172J and R172K models are actually certified on the Cessna 175 type certificate. 
Model introduced in July 2014 for 2015 customer deliveries, powered by a 155 hp (116 kW) Continental CD-155 diesel engine installed by the factory under a supplemental type certificate. Initial retail price in 2014 was $435,000.  The model has a top speed of 131 kn (243 km/h) and burns 3 U.S. gallons (11 L 2.5 imp gal) per hour less fuel than the standard 172.  As a result, the model has an 885 nmi (1,639 km) range, an increase of more than 38% over the standard 172.  This model is a development of the proposed and then cancelled Skyhawk TD.  Cessna has indicated that the JT-A will be made available in 2016. 
In reviewing this new model Paul Bertorelli of AVweb said: "I’m sure Cessna will find some sales for the Skyhawk JT-A, but at $420,000, it’s hard to see how it will ignite much market expansion just because it’s a Cessna. It gives away $170,000 to the near-new Redbird Redhawk conversion which is a lot of change to pay merely for the smell of a new airplane. Diesel engines cost more than twice as much to manufacture as gasoline engines do and although their fuel efficiency gains back some of that investment, if the complete aircraft package is too pricey, the debt service will eat up any savings, making a new aircraft not just unattractive, but unaffordable. I haven’t run the numbers on the JT-A yet, but I can tell from previous analysis that there are definite limits." 
The model was certified by both EASA and the FAA in June 2017.  It was discontinued in May 2018, due to poor sales as a result of the aircraft's high price, which was twice the price of the same aircraft as a diesel conversion. The aircraft remains available as an STC conversion from Continental Motors, Inc.  
In July 2010, Cessna announced it was developing an electrically powered 172 as a proof-of-concept in partnership with Bye Energy. In July 2011, Bye Energy, whose name had been changed to Beyond Aviation, announced the prototype had commenced taxi tests on 22 July 2011 and a first flight would follow soon.   In 2012, the prototype, using Panacis batteries, engaged in multiple successful test flights.  The R&D project was not pursued for production.
Canceled model Edit
On October 4, 2007, Cessna announced its plan to build a diesel-powered model, to be designated the 172 Skyhawk TD ("Turbo Diesel") starting in mid-2008. The planned engine was to be a Thielert Centurion 2.0, liquid-cooled, two-liter displacement, dual overhead cam, four-cylinder, in-line, turbo-diesel with full authority digital engine control with an output of 155 hp (116 kW) and burning Jet-A fuel. In July 2013 the 172TD model was canceled due to Thielert's bankruptcy. The aircraft was later refined into the Turbo Skyhawk JT-A, which was certified in June 2014 and discontinued in May 2018.    
Simulator company Redbird Flight uses the same engine and reconditioned 172 airframes to produce a similar model, the Redbird Redhawk.  
Premier Aircraft Sales also announced in February 2014 that it would offer refurbished 172 airframes equipped with the Continental/Thielert Centurion 2.0 diesel engine. 
A variant of the 172, the T-41 Mescalero was used as a trainer with the United States Air Force and Army. In addition, the United States Border Patrol uses a fleet of 172s for aerial surveillance along the Mexico-US border.
From 1972 to 2019 the Irish Air Corps used the Reims version for aerial surveillance and monitoring of cash, prisoner and explosive escorts, in addition to army cooperation and pilot training roles. 
History of Saint Helena
The island was discovered in May 1502 by João da Nova, a Spanish navigator in the service of Portugal. The exact date of the discovery traditionally has been given as May 21, which in the Eastern Orthodox Church is the feast day of St. Helena, Roman empress and mother of the emperor Constantine. Other evidence suggests, however, that it was May 3, the Roman Catholic feast day of the True Cross, of which St. Helena was the reputed discoverer. The existence of the island was known only to the Portuguese until 1588, when the English navigator Captain Thomas Cavendish visited St. Helena on his return from a voyage around the world. The island soon became a port of call for ships en route between Europe and the East Indies (present-day Indonesia).
The Dutch may have occupied St. Helena about 1645–51, but in 1659 the English East India Company took possession of the island. After a brief Dutch occupation in 1673, the East India Company was confirmed in its ownership. By 1673 nearly half of the inhabitants were imported slaves, but between 1826 and 1836 all slaves were freed. The remoteness of St. Helena made it attractive to the powers of Europe as a place of exile for Napoleon I, and he was confined at Longwood House on the island from October 1815 until his death in May 1821. During that period the island was placed under the jurisdiction of the British crown. Subsequently the East India Company resumed control until 1834, when the authority of the crown was restored. St. Helena remained reasonably prosperous as a busy port of call until about 1870 thereafter steam started replacing sail in seafaring, and the Suez Canal opened (1869), changing the pattern of sea routes.
In the early 1960s a telecommunications centre was developed on the island of Ascension, and employment there of workers from St. Helena restored a degree of prosperity. St. Helena was given some measure of self-rule through an Order in Council and Royal Instructions in 1966 (effective January 1967) that provided for local executive and legislative councils this order was replaced by a new constitution that became effective in January 1989. The territory’s relationship with Great Britain continued to evolve, and in July 2009 both parties approved a new constitution that came into effect on September 1. It included a bill of rights and limited some of the powers of the governor while giving more authority to members of the elected councils.
This article was most recently revised and updated by Lorraine Murray, Associate Editor.
Helena I SP-24 - History
Located at the junction of State Highway 45 and State Highway 58, approximately sixteen miles south-southeast of Cherokee, the county seat, and six miles west of Goltry, Helena is a small, incorporated town in the southeastern corner of Alfalfa County. Since the arrival of non-Indian settlers in September 1893, wheat farming has comprised the primary local economic activity. Alfalfa County was created from Woods County in 1907.
Soon after the Cherokee Outlet opened, dispersed communities began to emerge in southwestern Woods County. A postal designation was received by Helen S. Monroe for Helena in June 1894. About four miles to the southwest a settlement called Carwile coalesced. When the Arkansas Valley and Western Railway surveyed its route through the region, it bypassed Carwile and approached Helena. Several business enterprises moved nearer the proposed railway, where, circa 1896, H. H. Anderson had opened a store on John Neal's homestead. In 1902 the Northwestern Townsite Company, E. S. Wilhite, agent and former Carwile merchant, bought Neal's land, laid out the town about one-half mile from the existing store and post office, and in 1903 held a lot sale. A bank, the first enterprise to move from Carwile, opened in April 1903 and became the Helena State Bank. Soon, according to one observer, "almost the entire town of Carwile folded their tents and journeyed to the townsite of Helena" in August. In December 1903 voters chose to incorporate the village of 160 souls. On January 6, 1904, the Arkansas Valley and Western Railway (part of the St. Louis and San Francisco Railway system) trackage reached Helena, and the line reached Carmen that year.
By mid-1905 an estimated seven hundred residents supported two banks, two schools, and two newspapers. Farmers accessed four elevators, a flour mill, and two lumberyards. The census at 1907 statehood credited Helena with 521 inhabitants, a number that jumped to 760 in 1910. A portrait of Helena in 1909 would reveal Baptist, Christian, Methodist, and Presbyterian churches, two banks, and three dozen prosperous businesses and service providers. The Woods County High School, one of only two in Oklahoma Territory at that time, occupied a $90,000 building constructed in 1903 and opened in 1904 for four hundred students. In 1910 the building became the campus of Connell State School of Agriculture, but in 1918 the state gave the building to the city for a public school. Helena's population hovered between six and seven hundred for the first four decades of the twentieth century, peaking in 1940 at 776. The Helena Free Press, the Helena Herald, and most recently the Helena Star have printed the news.
State government institutions have always bolstered the town's income. The Western Oklahoma State School for White Children, an orphanage, occupied the former high school building from 1923 through 1944. From 1945 to 1948 and from 1956 through mid-1982 the State Training School for Boys operated on the property, which adjoins Helena at the west corporate limits. Reconfigured in July 1982 as James Crabtree Correctional Center, a medium-security prison, the complex has housed more than eight hundred adult men offenders and continued in that function at the end of the twentieth century. In the 1990s the facility operated a farm and also maintained a quail hatchery for the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation. During the 1990s the prison's wild horse training program annually brought mustang owners and buyers to Helena.
While other Alfalfa County towns lost railroad access in the 1930s and 1950s, Helena remained on the line of the Burlington-Northern Santa Fe Railway, successor to the Frisco. Nevertheless, the community experienced some of the decline typical of rural small towns of northwestern Oklahoma. Oil prospecting in the 1930s opened a small field that has continued to produce. The population peaked in 1940 at 776. During the 1940s and 1950s a bank and two dozen retail and wholesale businesses operated. After the state school relocated, the population dropped to 580 in 1960, but its return prompted an increase to 769 in 1970 and to 710 in 1980. The advent of the prison complex boosted the count to 1,043 inhabitants in 1990. The consolidated Timberlake School District, serving 340 students from a wide geographical area in the corner of the county, placed its high school and one elementary school in Helena.
In the mid-1990s residents operated two dozen retail businesses and a bank and attended five churches. Agriculture supported a Farmers' Co-Op Association elevator. Living only twenty-six miles from Enid, some residents could commute to jobs there. Helena entered the twenty-first century with a population of 443 and in 2010 had 1,403 living there.
"Helena, Empire City of Woods County," Daily Oklahoman (Oklahoma City), 25 June 1905.
"Helena," Vertical File, Research Division, Oklahoma Historical Society, Oklahoma City.
C. M. Holton, "Early Days in Helena Township," Helena (Oklahoma) Star, 1 October, 12 November, and 19 November 1953.
Our Alfalfa County Heritage: 1893–1976 (N.p.: Alfalfa County Historical Society, 1976).
No part of this site may be construed as in the public domain.
Copyright to all articles and other content in the online and print versions of The Encyclopedia of Oklahoma History is held by the Oklahoma Historical Society (OHS). This includes individual articles (copyright to OHS by author assignment) and corporately (as a complete body of work), including web design, graphics, searching functions, and listing/browsing methods. Copyright to all of these materials is protected under United States and International law.
Users agree not to download, copy, modify, sell, lease, rent, reprint, or otherwise distribute these materials, or to link to these materials on another web site, without authorization of the Oklahoma Historical Society. Individual users must determine if their use of the Materials falls under United States copyright law's "Fair Use" guidelines and does not infringe on the proprietary rights of the Oklahoma Historical Society as the legal copyright holder of The Encyclopedia of Oklahoma History and part or in whole.
Photo credits: All photographs presented in the published and online versions of The Encyclopedia of Oklahoma History and Culture are the property of the Oklahoma Historical Society (unless otherwise stated).
The following (as per The Chicago Manual of Style, 17th edition) is the preferred citation for articles:
Dianna Everett, &ldquoHelena,&rdquo The Encyclopedia of Oklahoma History and Culture, https://www.okhistory.org/publications/enc/entry.php?entry=HE011.
© Oklahoma Historical Society.
Oklahoma Historical Society | 800 Nazih Zuhdi Drive, Oklahoma City, OK 73105 | 405-521-2491
Site Index | Contact Us | Privacy | Press Room | Website Inquiries
Coffee at a cost
The distillery’s Midnight Mist Coffee Liqueur is a Kahlúa-like concoction of rum and coffee grown on the fertile island’s rocky slopes. Picked by hand, St Helena coffee beans are among the world’s most expensive, which you can buy in gift shops (£10 for 200g) or taste by the cup at the coffee shop in Jamestown Harbour. Even haughty Napoléon was a fan, drinking a few cups a day and describing it as the only good thing about St Helena.
The beans are considered special because they are pure descendants of the green-tipped Bourbon arabica seeds imported by the British East India Company from Mocha, Yemen in 1733. Limited amounts of this black gold are found abroad, with some occasionally being offered by Harrods and the Sea Island coffee merchants in London, and Starbucks Reserve in Seattle. It’s possible to take a tour of the cultivation, harvesting and roasting process at the Rosemary Gate plantation.
The city of Helena, Montana, is founded after miners discover gold
The first major Anglo settlement of Montana had begun just two years before in the summer of 1862, when prospectors found a sizeable deposit of placer gold at Grasshopper Creek to the west. When other even richer deposits were soon discovered nearby, a major rush began as tens of thousands of miners scoured the territory in search of gold. In 1864, four prospectors spotted signs of gold in the Helena area while on their way to the Kootenai country, but they were eager to reach the reportedly rich gold regions farther to the north and did not to stop. But after striking out on the Kootenai, they decided to take “one last chance” on finding gold and returned. When the signs turned out to mark a rich deposit of placer gold, they staked their claims and named the new mining district Last Chance Gulch.
Eventually, Last Chance Gulch would prove to be the second biggest placer gold deposit in Montana, producing some $19 million worth of gold in just four years. Overnight, thousands of miners began to flood into the region, and the four original discoverers added to their fortunes by establishing the town of Helena to provide them with food, lodging, and supplies. But unlike many of the early Montana mining towns, Helena did not disappear once the gold gave out, which it inevitably did. Located on several major transportation routes, well supplied with agricultural products from an adjacent valley, and near to several other important mining towns, Helena was able to survive and grow by serving the wider Montana mining industry. In 1875, the city became the capital of Montana Territory, and in 1894, the capital of the new state of Montana.
Helena makes history come alive
It was the lack of local research at the Norwegian island of Andøya that led to Helena’s research. Her background in history and Scandinavian languages, as well as her love for nature, came in handy when the traces of Iron Age activities in the landscape unfolded before her eyes. Helena was eager to give the islanders a voice, their own history, and it sparked off a creative journey that later would lead to a self-published book on the subject. The cheerful joys and appreciation from the locals kept her fueled to keep up the work. Today, she has published an impressive 80-page book about pre-historic life on an Iron Age farm at Andøya.
We met with her over a corona-free Zoom-meeting a warm December’s day to discuss her latest book, what made her write it, how her interest in history came to be, how she has found her way bringing history to life and what her future plans are.
First off, tell us a bit more about yourself?
-My name is Helena, and I am a historian and a teacher living on the island of Andøya in Northern Norway. As of now, I work as a teacher while dealing with some personal projects of my own.
Helena is an ambitious person with many irons in the fire. Her energy, passion, and love for what she is doing can be touched upon. She describes how she appreciates being busy, researching and learning new things, and how the locals are aware of this too because of all her constant projects. She laughs when she says that those who know her say “I do not know how she got time for it all”.
But her ambition level and passion for many things is not only shown through her projects, but also in her resumé from the university.
-I majored in history, but I started off with studying Scandinavian language and cultures. Later, I studied science of religion, practical pedagogical education, cultural project management, and some archaeology as well. You could say I have been studying whatever makes it easier for me to understand the Iron Age, like runes, mythology, a bit of archaeology… everything that could fit for an Iron Age researcher.
Originally, Helena was born and raised in the Netherlands. Her move to Northern Norway was decided after a back-packing trip through Scandinavia where she fell in love with the Norwegian nature and warm-hearted people. After working at farms in Norway for about a year she finally said yes to Norway: this was now her new home.
-I studied at the University of Oslo where I met my husband. We later moved to Tromsø, and then to my husband’s home island, Andøya. The idea was to stay for a year, but we fell in love with the nature and all the possibilities it gave us, and we decided upon staying. I feel like I see and experience everything, the nature and the mountains, as a tourist. There was no nature where I grew up. In Netherlands, we do not have this kind of nature it is flat and lack remarkable elements.
“We fell in love with the nature and all the possibilities it gave us, and we decided upon staying”
Helena continues to tell us how it was her early accounts with Swedish literature that made her become interested in nature and the stories of the north. She describes to us how she loved Selma Lagerlöf’s The Wonderful Adventures of Nils as a child. It is a story about a boy who gets cursed for being mean and he gets scaled down to the size of a hand by the farms gårdstomte. By a series of events he ends up traveling Sweden on the back of a goose and the whole story paints wonderful pictures of the Swedish landscape. Other pieces of literature who had a big impact on Helena was Astrid Lindgren and her character Pippi Longstocking as well as Ronia, the Robber’s Daughter and The Brothers Lionheart. The latter two is set in a medieval nature setting with one foot in reality and the other in fantasy.
–Ronia, the Robber’s daughter is my favorite book of all times, Helena tells us.
Why history, and why Iron Age?
The love for the Swedish literature did not only have an impact in Helena’s view on nature, but also made her grow an interest for the Islandic sagas about the Vikings, one of the reasons she decided to become a historian.
“To understand the Iron Age people, you must study how they made use of their landscape and how they lived in symbiosis with nature”
-Ever since I was a child I have been interested in history. I cannot remember one moment in my life where my passion for history has not been present. The iron age caught my attention as it combines nature and history with a sense of adventure. To understand the Iron Age people, you must study how they made use of their landscape and how they lived in symbiosis with nature.Helena have made all the paintings and taken all the photos in her book.
Helena then goes on with describing how important history is to her and how it can be used to strengthen society. How it can be used as a tool to both education and self-expression. Helena has a belief that everyone is entitled to history, and how history is not meant to be hidden in archives but to be told. She is not only a historian with passion for written sources, her passion of teaching also shines through while talking about history.
-I have found ways to highlight history though re-enactment and make them come to life. When I started with Instagram two years ago, I noticed the response was much better when I put history in a living context through re-enactment. The everyday life is easily forgotten, but it is those things that make people interested and exited. It is was make history come alive.
“I have found ways to highlight history though re-enactment and make them come to life”
Helena tells us about how putting items into a re-enactment context make the items more accessible to people and bring history alive.
-If I take a picture of, let’s say, a bow, it is just a picture of a bow. But if I hold it and am wearing Viking clothes in a context it might have been used in, all off a sudden the bow is made useful as an actual tool and its practical functions is showed off.
By doing such, Helena experiences how people immediately get drawn into history. She has a great way of turning dead things alive by making use of them. This is a sort of experimental archaeology, one could say, Helena continues, where you introduce people to certain time periods in pre-history. By “doing it the Viking way” people are given a new relationship to the period, and it is much easier to relate and imagine how life could have been for the Iron Age people.
-At the same time, I make people interested, it is also a great way to create a relaxed approach to history where I get to be creative. I am a bit nerdy when it comes to historical correctitude, like what kind of fabrics people made their clothes of, how they used their tools, for example. At the same time, I want history to be fun. It costs a lot of money, time, and skill to make everything correct. I rather have fun with it and make history more accessible, that is my main goal.
Why did you choose to become a historian and not an archaeologist?
-Good question! I have always been interested in the islandic sagas such as the Edda, but also the stories and the mythology. Since these are written sources I naturally guarded towards history. These sources are extremely complicated to interpret, it takes a historian’s eye to make it through and fully understand them. While interpreting them, you also have to make use of your critical thinking as a historian.
“if I knew back then I would have ended up on an island with so much archaeological material but hardly anything done, I would have picked archaeology”
Helena then goes on with explaining how she feels like the archaeology in the Netherlands have outplayed its part long ago. The reason for this is that there is hardly anything left in the ground, almost everything is already excavated. When she was younger and started her academic path, she did therefore see no reason in digging into the archaeological field. She also had the notion archaeology was very factually. You found a house you wrote down that you found a house and that is it.
-Today, I know archaeology is much more complex, and if I knew back then I would have ended up on an island with so much archaeological material but hardly anything done, I would have picked archaeology. The archaeological research done at Andøya is rather outdated and scarce. They need to be refreshed and I can clearly see the need of new excavations to write history here. There are some stray finds here and there as well as limited samples, people have even found a Cufic coin at their home from the Iron Age period, but there has never been a full excavation in modern times. I would deeply appreciate if more research could be done here, the place is wonderful, and the locals deserves it.
What inspired you to write the book?
-So little has been done and there are so much exiting things here! I felt the need to tell the story and make it available for more people, because it is such an exciting place. By writing the book I feel I can put everything into a context and hopefully make archaeologists aware of this place. I want to inspire others. You do not write a book to become rich, but because you love what you are doing. I also experienced the importance of, not only doing something for myself, but creating something that could spark other people’s interest.
“I want to inspire others. You do not write a book to become rich, but because you love what you are doing”
Especially the locals have been important in the process, Helena tells us. Without their consent and their engagement, she probably would not have continued her work with the book. She describes how the locals, the people living in the area and making use of its present-day resources, were important to keep her motivation up. Writing someone else’s history is not an easy task, it takes a whole lot of respect and co-operational work. But her work was not only greeted with interest and enthusiasm.
-You could say I had two kinds of responses to my local history project one side was skeptical and wondering why I wanted to write about their history, the other side very enthusiastic and proud that I was interested in their history and wanted to write about it. For me, it was important to introduce all of them to my work, my ideas, and my intention. Writing a book about local history is not something you do for yourself, that is impossible, the perspective must be broader.Helena’s book can be bought online as well as in museum shops in Norway.
Another challenge is the cultural clash, Helena continues.
-Out here, people do not care as much about your academic references. Instead of checking your resumé, they would rather see proof of how you do things and what you stand for. You need to prove yourself to be worthy of both the local’s knowledge and time. And you have to bring cake and take your time. To ask for someone’s knowledge by bringing a cake would never work in the big cities, Helena laughs.
What was the biggest challenge with writing the book?
-To limit oneself, to be able to say, “I am done, that is it”. You can always work just a little more, then it will get better. What made me say “stop” was the number of pages. It was supposed to be 40, but then it was 60, and now it is 80. It is crazy how fast a book gets more expensive when you add pages. I did not want it to be too pricy. It was hard to let go and say to myself I was done, and in what order I needed to put things. What should I start and end with, and in what order should I put everything in between to make sure people would understand? You get kind of blind reading the book while working with it.
“It was hard to let go and say to myself I was done”
Helena self-published her book, and she tells us how much work that goes into everything. It took her 2,5 years to finish the book and she wrote it in both Norwegian and English simultaneously. Because she self-published it, she also had to pay for everything herself.
-When something went wrong, it could almost mean the end of the whole project, because of the costs. But I managed and tried to tell myself that we were going for something ’really good, not perfect’.
But publishing through a publisher was not an option – the subject was too slim. Helena hopes one day to be able to use a publisher and just focus on writing, but with a broader subject and not something so local. It might be easy to think that all the hard work has discouraged Helena to continue writing, but it is rather the opposite.
-The focus of this book was resources. I would love to make a whole series with politics and power structures as the next theme. It is also amazing to see people from all around the world buying my book and read about Andøya.
Helena is currently planning to develop an online rune course next year and is learning how to have an online training program.
Helena’s Seven best tips for you who want to write a book
- Find a theme that you are interested in and makes you happy, but also can make others happy. If you do so, you can find motivation and courage to keep on going from other people’s enthusiasm when things get hard.
- Have an edit system that have several versions of the same text. It will quite fast become several files and you will need to go back to older versions of your text now and then.
- Always have a backup of your work.
- Put your manuscript aside for 11 days and then start working on it again. You will see it with new eyes.
- Let readers from your target group read the manuscript and give you feedback. How do they experience the manuscript and the language? Does something need to be made clearer etc.
- If you write a local book, involve the locals. Hold presentations, show and tell them what you are working on, have Q&A: s etc.
- Have freedom in your work and decide yourself when it should be done. Have a realistic time frame, it is better to be satisfied than to be in a hurry. There will always be fault in the text so therefore it should not be perfect, just very, very good.
Do not forget you have 15 % discount on Helena’s book with promo code SA15
Photo: Cover photo: Piet van den Bemd (insta: @pietvandenbemd.
Other Photos: Helena Hals. Copyright 2020, Helena Hals.
Text: Lovisa Sénby Posse & Elfrida Östlund, 2020. Copyright 2020 Scandinavian Archaeology.
About the author
Lovisa Sénby Posse
Iron age Scandinavian archaeologist with a bachelor in Liberal arts with major in Archaeology and a bachelor in Art history with major in Nordic art, both from Uppsala University, Sweden. Exchange studies at Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland, and University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa.
Master of Arts (two years) in Archaeology with specialization in burials, ship burials, and artefact management and interpretation, also from Uppsala university, Sweden.
In my master thesis I created an analyzing method to handle large quantities of artefacts, a method descended in Art History. I also created a method with elements of theory to perform a spatial analysis on graves. This also derived from Art History. The methods were applied to ship burials at Valsgärde, Upland, Sweden.
As Editor-in-chief, I am responsible for the publication and over all work with Scandinavian Archaeology, a job I deeply enjoy. I also founded the magazine in late September 2020.
Two Montana Cities Part I Helena
The territory of Montana is in itself an empire. It was given Territorial rights in 1864, and since then has increases rapidly both in wealth and population. Fabulously rich in mines, already having an annual output of nearly $26,000,000, it is famous for it's vast areas of grazing land and becoming widely known as an agricultural country. With a total area of 93,000,000 acres of land, of which 16,000,000 are agricultural, 38,000,000 grazing, 12,000,000 timber, 5,000,000 mineral and 22,000,000 mountainous, it is the source of the Columbia and Missouri, and has an almost innumerable number of smaller streams, whose presence in the mountain canons and in the valleys give the Territory a charming picturesqueness.
Helena, Montana 1888
Within a distance of from twenty to forty miles of Helena are thousands of mining claims yet to be developed, anyone of which may prove as rich as the richest of those that are now productive. If the several agricultural valleys were places in a continuous line, they would form a belt 4000 miles long, and averaging from miles in width. Every year the number of farms increases. In the Gallatin, Prickly-Pear, Yellowstone, Bitter Root, Sun River and other valleys, one no longer sees neglected fields.
But if one were to write in detail of Montana and it's resources, he would find the task an arduous one. There are so many valleys, each with it's own claims and characteristics, so many mines and towns and districts, that a volume might be devoted to each. There is great and general buoyancy among the people, and local prejudice runs high.
Regarding Helena and Butte, however, there is almost a unanimity of feeling. The two places are looked upon as perfect illustrations of what has been accomplished in the Territory since the age of development began.
To the younger generation Helena is a Parisian-like center which he hopes in time to see. Capitalists may make their money at Butte or elsewhere, but are moderately sure to spend it at Helena and the miner or ranchman is never so happy as when he finds himself in what, without question, is the metropolis of the Territory. I know of no city in the extreme middle west that could so well satisfy one who had learned to appreciate Western life as Helena. It's climate, its surroundings, even its society, largely composed of Eastern and college bred mean and young wives fresh from older centres, are delightfully prominent features. The city has a population of nearly 15,000 and considering its great wealth, it is not surprising that it should have electric lights, a horse-car line, and excellent schools.
Helena, Looking Down Broadway
Thanks to the railways, which have had and are continuing to have so important an effect upon the country overlooked by the Rocky Mountains, Montana's isolation is now a thing of the past. Two railroad routes connect it with the East and Pacific West, and there is still the Missouri, navigable from St. Louis to the great Falls, within easy reach of Helena.
The early history of Helena, which fortunately may still be gathered from living witnesses, is a striking illustration of the fact that chance and luck were once the two most important factors of ultimate success in the Territory. None who came into Montana in early days were systematic discoverers. The majority of them knew little of the the theory of mining. What success they had was due to luck. The paying properties they found were nearly all discovered by chance.
When John Cowan and Robert Stanley grew dissatisfied with the amount of room afforded them in the overcrowded camps of Alder Bulch, they resolved to push northward to Kootanie, where rich diggings had been reported. In July, 1864, the two men and their friends reached a tributary of the Prickly-Pear. There the supply of food they had brought ran low, and further progress northward was impossible. In despair, the party made camp and began to dig for gold. Luckily finding it, they named their diggings the Last Chance Mines, and their district Rattlesnake, the latter word being suggested, no doubt, by the presence of earlier settlers than they themselves. In September Cowan and Stanley built their cabins, and thus had the honor of being the first residents of a camp that in after-years became the present city of Helena.
From the very first, Last Chance Gulch fulfilled it's first promise. Soon after Cowan's cabin was completed a Minnesota wagon train reach the valley, and brought an increase of population to the young camp, the fame of which had gone broadcast over the land. Fabulous stories were told of it's great wealth, and during the winter of 1864-5 there was a wild stampede to it from all the directions. But still the infant Helena was without a name. The first Territorial election had already been held, and on the 12th of December the first Legislature assembled at Bannak. In view of this progress, the miners of Last Chance decided that their camp must no longer go unchristened. At a meeting held in the cabin of Uncle John Somerville the name Helena was accepted, and given without dissent to the collection of rudely built huts in which the miners lived.
Pouring Gold - Assay Office, Helena
Helena then entered upon its eventful and prosperous career. Discovery followed discovery, and the town, unsightly with its main streets occupied by sluice boxes and gravel heaps, became the centre of a mining district that proved richer every day. In the summer of 1865 the first newspaper was printed The press was brought in over the mountains on the backs of pack-mules, and many of the earlier editions were printed on yellow wrapping paper.
In 1869 the township of Helena was entered from the general government. In a period of seven years the placer claims near Helena yielded $20,000,000, and although far removed from the outside work, the city, as a mining centre, was of great importance, and may be said to have enjoyed an uninterrupted period of success.
Helena, regarded from a local standpoint, is the geographical, commercial, monetary, political, railroad, and social centre of Montana. Its trade is larger and more extended than that of any other city or town in the Territory, and therefore its commercial supremacy is unquestioned. The Helena banks, rich in deposits and many in number, may well entitle the city to its claim as the monetary centre. The terminus of the lately completed Manitoba system, and having the Northern Pacific as an outlet to the east, west, and south, it has several branch roads to the important mining camps of of Wickes, Marysville, and Rimini, and is promised others which are to aid in developing the rich districts scattered about the surrounding country.
Helena, in the truest sense of the word, is cosmopolitan. Let one walk the streets at any hour of the day or night, and he will be sure to notice the peculiarity. Crowding the sidewalks are miners, picturesque in red shirts and top-boots longhaired Missourians, waiting, like Micawber, for something to "turn up" ranch-men, standing besides their heavily loaded wagons trappers tourists men of business. China men and Indians, Germans and Hebrews, whites and blacks, the prosperous and the needy, the representatives of every State in the Union, Englishmen and Irishmen, all make Helena their home. No traditions, no old family influence, no past social eminence, hamper the restless spirit of the busy workers. There is a long list of daily visitors, and the city is never without its sight-seers. Invalids seek it for its climatic advantages.
The site of Helena, though the railway station is a mile from the heart of the town, was most happily chosen. It could not have been better had Cowan and his confreres foreseen the future size and importance of the camp they founded. The city faces toward the north. Behind it rise the mountains of the main range, the noble isolated peaks, bare, brown, and of every varying shape and size, forming a background of which one never tires. The old camp was gathered into the narrow quarters of the winding gulch, that extends from the mountains to the open valley of the Prickly-Pear. The present city has outgrown such limitations, and from the gulch, down which the leading business street runs, has spread over the confining hills, and today proudly looks out upon the broad valley and far beyond it, to the peaks that mark the course of the great Missouri.
Directly overshadowing the city is Mount Helena. From it the view is broadest, grandest, most complete. At one's feet is the town of rapid growth. You can see the houses scattered at random over the low, bare elevations, and in the old ravine, the source of so much wealth, the scene of such strange stories, are the flat-roofed business blocks in which Helena takes such justifiable pride. It is no mere frontier town that you look upon. It is a city rather-a city compactly built, and evidently vigorous and growing. On its outskirts, crowning sightly eminences or clinging to the steep hill-sides, are the new houses of those upon whom fortune has smiled, and far out upon the levels are scattered groups of buildings that every day draw nearer toe the railway that has come from the outside word to lend Helena a helping hand.
Leaving the hotel in the very heart of the tow, and following Main Street to its upper end, wee find ourselves in the oldest part of the city. Nothing here is modern or suggestive of wealth. AT your side are rudely built log cabins, with gravel roofs and dingy windows. They are time-stained and weather-beaten now. Chickens scratch upon the roofs half-fed dogs slink away at your approach. A chinaman has taken this for his home, and has hung his gaudy red sign of Wah Sing over the low doorway and in this live those who have failed to find in Helena their El Dorado, and now are reduced to living Heaven only knows how. But in years gone past, when the city was a camp, who scoffed at a cabin of logs? These huts were the homes of the future capitalists.
Two Old timers at Helena
We pass once more into Main Street, and from it onto broadway, that climbs a steep hill-slope, and brings us to the government Assay Office. It is a plain two-storied brick building with stone trimmings, and occupies a little square by itself. Within, all is order and neatness. To the right of the main hall are the rooms where the miners' gold-dust and silver ore are melted and poured in molten streams from the red-hot crucibles. Bars and bricks of the precious metals are shown, and in the vaults they are stacked in glittering array. Every room has its interest. In one the accounts are kept by the assayer in another are rows of delicate scales, in which the smallest particles of ore are weighed to determine the purity of the moulds packed away in the strongly guarded vaults.
A Street Scene in Wickes
As the ore is received it is tested, weighed, and melted. from the retorts it is run into moulds, which, after being properly valued and marked, are placed in vaults or shipped to the government Mint at Philadelphia. An ordinary gold brick is a trifle larger than the common clay brick. One was shown us which measured 9 inches long, 3 1/2 wide, and 2 1/2 high. Its actual weight was 509 25/100 ounces, the component parts being (basis 1000) 667.2 gold, 294 silver, and 29.2 baser metals. The cash value of the mould was $7,373.
The County Court-house, costing $200,000, is one of the most conspicuous objects of the city. Besides affording accommodation for all the courts and officers of the county, it has rooms for the Governor and other Territorial officials, the Montana Library (both law and miscellaneous), the Historical Society, and the Legislature. The walls are of Montana granite, quarried near Helena, and the trimmings, of red sandstone, came from Bayfield, on Lake Superior. The building is 132 feet long by 80 wide, and with the basement is three stories high.
To the left of the main entrance is a Norman tower. From it is had one of those views for which Helena is so famous-a view of city, valley, mountains. We are nearly 5000 feet above sea-level, and the air is clear and rarefied. Swiftly flows the blood through our veins, and our lungs are all expanded. No wonder the people love their city. Never is the weather sultry, never is the heat oppressive. In winter, a month of snow and terrible cold: then an early spring, with wild flowers in March, and green grasses in April.
From the Court-house our way is through a succession of residence streets. All are wide, long, and straight. On either side grows a row of cotton-wood trees, t he leaves turning now, and some of them dropping to the ground, on this September day. Behind the trees are cottages, some of wood, others of bright red brick: and before and around each house is a bit of lawn, with a few shade trees, and a flower bed tucked away in some sunny corner. Here a riding party is ready for a canter out into the valley or to the mountain trails and there stands a pony phaeton, upstart successor of the old canvas-covered wagons that twenty years ago were the only vehicles to be seen in this far-off land.
Smelting Works - Wickes
The newer and more pretentious houses in Helena are on Madison Avenue, a wide thoroughfare nearly parallel to Main street, but having a much higher elevation and more commanding outlook. A few years ago the plateau which may now be regarded as the "court end" of Helena was without a tree or house. It now presents an entirely different appearance. Madison Avenue in itself would claim attention in any city, while the residences that face it afford striking evidence of the fact that Helena is fast outgrowing all the provincialism, and to day deserves the encomiums that one is inclined to bestow upon it.
Leaving the cottage-lines streets, we will descend the hill to Main Street once more, and crossing the city, climb to this popular boulevard. Far away, across the valley, are seen the purple peaks of the Beet Range, out of which rises a huge cone known as Bear's Tooth. At it's base the Missouri takes its plunge into the Gate of the mountains. For more than a hundred miles the view is unobstructed. Mountains are everywhere piled together here broken, snow-capped, and isolated in other directions. No wonder that the people have selected the plateau as the site of their best houses. In no other city of the far West is there to be had a more extended or a more interesting view.
Benton Avenue is another favorite residence street. Walking down its shaded length, passing the houses that are springing into existence as though by magic, we gain a still deeper insight into the life and attractions of the city. Are we interested in churches? If so, they are here, Episcopal, and Congregationalists, Baptist, Methodist, and Catholic. Scattered at random about the city, and in no instance being more than well suited to present needs, they still give Helena its proper tone, and show by their presence that a new life has crept into the old camp of reckless mining days.
The Helena Board of Trade was organized in 1887, and on the 1st of January, 1888,. issued its first annual report. Many interesting facts regarding the growth of the city are given in the pamphlet. The assessable wealth of Helena in 1887, according to the Secretary of the Board, is $8,000,000, or, estimating the population at 13,000, over the $615 per capita. The assessed valuation of Lewis and Clarke County for 1887 was $11,000,000, while it's actual wealth was $75,000,000. There were 388 new buildings erected in Helena and its several additions in 1886 and '87, the total cost of which was $2,037,000.
The chief social organization in Helena is the Helena Club. Among its members are men prominent in all business circles, and in such industries as cattle-raising and mining. The club rooms are fully supplied with current literature, and are the popular resort during the late afternoon and early evening. A stranger in Helena is moderately sure of finding whomsoever he wishes to meet at the club, and I am sure the hospitalities of the organization are always gladly extended.
In her schools and other public institutions Helena is fully abreast of the times. There are five brick school-houses in the city, and money for their support is raised by direct taxation on property. School lands cannot be sold in Montana until the Territory becomes a State. Then, however there will be 5,000,000 acres available for the establishment of a fund that will relieve the tax-payers from their present burden.
Besides the public schools there are other institutions, maintained by the Catholic sisters, and a business college with an enrollment already of nearly 500 scholars.
The two library associations of Helena, namely, the City Library and the Historical Society's Library, were both destroyed by fire in 1874, but have since been replaced by collections that are large, varied, and valuable. The Law Library contains nearly 4000 volumes of reports, text-books, and laws. The last Legislature appropriated $3000 to its use. The Historical society's Library consists of original MSS., old historical works, home pamphlets and maps, and contains 5000 volumes. The society occupies two rooms in the Court-house, and last year was given $400 by the Legislature. The object of the officers is to collect and preserve such original letters, diaries, and accounts of travel in Montana and shall serve as the material from which a comprehensive history of the Territory may be gathered. The Helena Free Library contains 2500 carefully selected books of miscellaneous reading, and is supported by a city tax of one-half mill on each dollar of valuation. The income from such source was $2600 in 1886. Still another library is that belonging to the Young Men's Christian Association.
Sufferers from pulmonary troubles are often greatly benefited by living at Helena. The air is dry and bracing, and acts as a tonic to those who have not much natural energy. It would be unwise to advise all who are ill to try living a Helena. No one can select a new home for a patient without first knowing his particular troubles. But I have no doubt that one who takes his case in hand before disease does more than suggest its presence, and goes to Montana prepared to live in the open air, will be able to build up his constitution and begin life anew.
But having seen the city, let us now visit Wickes, and glance for a moment at one of the regions from which the people draw the revenue that they have poured so freely forth for the public good. Making an early start, we will drive down Main Street to the station, and taking the train there, ride down the Prickly-Pear Valley to the Junction, and then on toward the southeast to our destination. On one side ride the mountains, with cool, inviting-looking canons, hemmed in by high hills, and leading into the heart of the range on the other is the valley, extending far away to hills in the east. Grasses are brown, and the pines deep green. For an hour the Montana of old is ours to enjoy: isolated, quiet, just as nature fashioned it.
And then comes Wickes: an unsightly town a mining camp a place with many saloons and no churches wooden shanties wavering streets groups of men, flannel shirted, unshaven a background of mountains. This is the picture. We can hear the heavy pounding of the crushers in the works the air at times is heavy with the smoke of the furnaces. The town is not inviting. It is, as Helena once was, rough, uncouth, repellent almost but it is rich
Not rich in itself perhaps, but unquestionably so in its surroundings. The largest so in its surroundings. The largest works at Wickes are those of the Helena Mining and Reduction Company. The town is the creation of this company, and the works bring together the throng that greets us. The product of the smeltery in 1886 had a money value of $1,105,190,76. Nearly 500 men are employed, and ore from Idaho as well as from the mines near the town is treated. Standing anywhere in the main street, we look upon a country fairly riddled with mines. Some of them are famous producers others are but just opened. One can scarcely realize the possible future of the region. Every day brings in progress every year the output is greater. As we walk through the dimly lighted buildings, stopping now to watch the crushers and again to listen while the guide explains the process of reduction, one begins to form a just estimate of Helena's claims, for all this district is at her very doors, and the more money Wickes produces, the more brilliant become the prospects of the Territorial capital.
Marysville, nearly thirty miles from Helena, is a second Wickes in appearance, but when one remembers the wealth of the mines which have created the town, he forgets the ugliness of the streets, and ceases to notice the dilapidation of the rudely built cabins. Marysville is chiefly famous as the site of the Drum Lummon, but does not depend on this mine alone for its support. The town is the chief seat of an extremely rich district, already well developed, and is an important suburb of Helena. It is connected by rail with the latter city, and will eventually be the terminus of a branch of the Manitoba road.
The discoverer of the Drum Lummon was Mr. Thomas Cruse. In the days before he sold his property and returned to Helena a much honored millionaire, Mr. Cruse was locally known as "old Tommy," and was looked upon as a somewhat visionary man. None questioned after a time that his mine, where he lived and labored alone, was valuable, but few placed its worth so high as did the patient owner. When he refused half a million for his mine, the people of Helena called him foolish, an when he turned away from the offer of a million, they called him a fool. But the miner was wiser than his friends, and eventually received his price, $11,500,000, and a goodly number of shares in the new company. Then, as so often in the case, the old familiarity was dropped, and the "Tommy" of by-gone days became Mr. Thomas Cruse, "capitalist." A kind, thoroughly honest man, of whom all who know him are ready to say a good word, he is a familiar figure on the streets of Helena, and to-day is president of a savings-bank in he city where a few years ago he was not sure of getting trusted for enough to keep himself alive. As an illustration of the ups and downs of a miner's life he is a notable example.
Mining, fascinating as it seems to one who learns only its brighter side, must not be thought the only industry from which Helena derives it revenue. It is undoubtedly the chief occupation of the people, but fortunes have been made and are now being made in that other great Montana industry, stock-raising. In his last report, the Governor of Montana estimated that there were then in the Territory:
Sheep-raising is a most profitable business. The Montana grasses are abundant and nutritious, and a vast area of country is available for pasturage. Montana wool has a ready sale in Eastern markets. The clip for 1887 is estimated at 5,771,420 pounds. Cattle suffered severely in the winter of 1886-7, and the industry was badly crippled, although not by any means annihilated. Millions of Helena capital are invested both in sheep and cattle, and it is an open question which have been the more successful, the miners or the stockmen. "Cattle kings," as the men how have made fortunes out of stock are facetiously called, ar by no means a rarity in eh city. The possessions of many of them ar enormous. I doubt if even the men themselves know exactly how many sheep or cattle they own.
The Women’s Library Association was founded in 1888 as a means to have a proper library in the city of Helena. This group went on to found our museum in 1929. This exhibit showcases their history and achevements.
The Helena Museum is pleased to exhibit pottery excavated from the Arkansas Delta as well as a few items from central Arkansas. These artifacts are related to the Menard- Hodges archeological site in Arkansas County.
Phillips County Lumber Industry
At one point in the 1920’s, West Helena was considered a major contender for hardwood lumber capitol of the country. Dozens of major lumber companies lined the streets and produced wood for everything from barrel staves to woodie panels.
Phillips County has hosted many different Christian denominations since the 1820’s, and Helena is believed to have been the site of the first Catholic Mass west of the Mississippi River in 1541. Additionally, Phillips County has historically hosted a vibrant Jewish Community.
Phillips County has been a major commercial driver for the state of Arkansas. For many years, Helena’s motto was “Arkansas’ only Seaport.” The museum hosts many displays on the bussinesses that operated in our county.
Phillips County Education
As early as 1856, there has been a scholastic presence in Phillips County. Phillips County has seen everything from small, one-room schoolhouses to multi-story public schools that served hundreds of students. The museum hosts many displays that highlight these schools and the students that studied in them.
The Museum features smaller exhibits on the Mississippi River, focusing on the boats that stopped in Helena and other smaller river landings, the commerece it brough to the area, and the flooding that periodically ravaged the Delta.
Helena Museum of Phillips County
The Helena Museum of Phillips County works to preserve the history of the Arkansas Delta.
The Helena Museum Mission Statement
The Helena Museum of Phillips County seeks to deepen the understanding of the people, society, and culture of Phillips County, and share its historic collection with the public for the betterment of the county.