Filed Under Billings

1138 North 31st Street

North Elevation Historic District

Valued at $7,000 in 1930, this newly built residence was home to grocer Robert Milligan, his wife Ida Mae, their three children, a fourteen-year-old niece, and a live-in servant. The one-and-one-half story, front-gabled house features Craftsman bungalow-style details. These include exposed rafter tails and roof beams, triangular knee braces, clapboard siding, a covered porch entrance, single dormers, and multi-pane windows. Ida Mae Milligan sold the home to Wylie and Grace Johnston in August 1930. A division freight and passenger agent for Burlington Railroad, Wylie was an active member of several fraternal orders in town, including the Billings Masonic Lodge. He was Grace’s second husband, and before she and Wylie married in 1927, she was raising three children with the help of her parents, while working as a clerk for the D. J. Cole Department Store. Unlike most women of the era, Grace continued to work after she and Wylie married, even going on a month-long buying trip in 1928 to Chicago and New York. The home continues to stand as an excellent example of Craftsman style architecture in the North Elevation Historic District.

Images

1138 North 31st Street 1138 North 31st Street. Front view of the house, facing southwest near the front sidewalk on North 31st Street. Winter photograph. Source: Montana State Historic Preservation Office Creator: Unknown photographer Date: Jan. 2015

Location

1138 North 31st Street, Billings, Montana | Private

Metadata

Montana National Register Sign Program, “1138 North 31st Street,” Historic Montana, accessed December 3, 2022, https://historicmt.org/items/show/2755.