Samuel T. Hauser Mansion

The history of this magnificent home, one of the earliest of the great mansions built on Helena’s west side, is finely interwoven with the history of Montana. Pioneer entrepreneur and financier Samuel T. Hauser built the twenty-nine-room residence in 1885, the same year President Cleveland appointed him territorial governor. The Roman Catholic Diocese of Helena purchased and presented the home to Bishop John P. Carroll in 1913. After Bishop Carroll’s death in 1925, three succeeding bishops occupied the mansion. When the 1935 earthquakes displaced the Sisters of Charity in Helena, the home became the convent of this long-established teaching order. The bedrooms were at this time partitioned into thirty-two sleeping rooms. In 1969, the Diocese sold the home to former Governor Tim Babcock and his wife, Betty, who completely restored the stately home to its former grandeur. Gables, dormers, and porches embellished with carved wood and windows with stone trim of locally quarried porphyry highlight the fine design. Interior appointments include black walnut wainscoting and parquet floors of cherry, walnut, and oak. An intricately carved oak stairway graces the grand hall and one of the nine fireplaces features a ceramic hearth depicting Hauser family scenes. Two exquisite stained glass panels, crafted in Germany by the designer of the St. Helena Cathedral windows and installed by Bishop Carroll in 1915, remain intact. In 1975, the mansion received a Burlington House Award for American Homes on the basis of taste and ingenuity in interior furnishing.

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720 Madison Avenue, Helena, Montana ~ Private