Forsyth Residential Historic District

Founded for the railroad, Forsyth’s residential neighborhoods were platted in 1882 but much of the land lay undeveloped until the 1900s. Forsyth’s first-generation homes were simple dwellings rapidly constructed of wood or log to serve the immediate needs of the railroad workers who were Forsyth’s first residents. The historic district northeast of the commercial area was home to many of these. By the 1890s, however, the railroad crews had moved on, the population had become more diverse, and the town was more settled. The landmark vernacular Gothic style Methodist Episcopal Church, built in 1890, represents this earliest period of permanent development. A few carpenter-built American foursquare and gable-front-and-wing cottages survive from the 1890s. These dwellings follow the national folk housing trends of the era. Builders and owners added distinctive details such as bay windows, small dormers, and porches, lending each home a distinct personality. As Forsyth residents prospered, fashionable Queen Anne style residences began to lend prestige to the neighborhood. After 1901, domestic building styles became more varied when pattern books made the latest architectural plans widely available. Forsyth enjoyed rapid growth and new prosperity in the first decades of the 1900s. Stylish Colonial Revival homes and Craftsman bungalows reflect the optimism of the homestead era. Today the historic district is a dynamic mix of these later elements interspersed with the earlier carpenter-built cottages. The quiet, inviting avenues personify the enthusiasm of hard-working citizens and early town boosters.

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Roughly bounded by Cedar Street, 11th Avenue, Willow Street, 12th Avenue, Oak Street, and 14th Avenue, Forsyth, Montana ~ Private