Susie Marr House

Virginia City Historic District

The small-scale simplicity of Susie Marr’s house belies the owner’s rich life. Marr emigrated from Scotland in 1870. In Virginia City, she managed household affairs for banker, William Morris, his wife, and their six children. In turn, Morris took care of Susie and gave her this house, which she shared with her brother, William Marr, a widower. The Marrs were Masons, an organization that formed a caring social circle and set Susie, a maid, and William, a store clerk, on an equal plane with more affluent community members. William, who ran unsuccessfully for sheriff, served stints as Virginia City’s postmaster and county clerk. Susie frequently visited her Masonic Sisters of the Eastern Star outside Virginia City and rubbed elbows with Montana’s elite as a Virginia City delegate to the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair. In 1910, when Susie was sixty-five, brother William died, and Susie’s employers, the Morrises, moved to Bozeman. Nevertheless, Susie remained in Virginia City for another twenty-five years, eventually bequeathing her house to the Masons and moving to the Helena Masonic Home, where she lived to age ninety-seven.

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