Prussian-born entrepreneur Theodore H. Kleinschmidt was 25 years old when he arrived in the gold camp of Virginia City, Montana, in 1864 with a mule team and a stock of merchandise. Only two years later, he and Samuel Hauser opened the First National Bank of Helena in a local grocery store. Kleinschmidt became one of the town’s leading financiers, with interests in public utility companies, banks, merchandising, mining, and livestock ranching around Montana Territory. He served three terms as mayor of Helena, was president of the Helena Board of Trade, director of the state fair association, and treasurer of the Society of Montana Pioneers. He built this home for his wife, Mary Blattner Kleinschmidt, and their six children in 1892. The location then was notably east of town, at a time when stylish mansions were clustered on Helena’s west side. When Mrs. Kleinschmidt died in 1904, her funeral was held here, with mourners transported by special trolley car. The home was designed by Montana pioneer W. E. Norris, born on the plains en route to Montana. In it, Norris proves his advertising claim, “Fine Residences a Specialty,” combining dignified lines with Victorian gingerbread touches.

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1823 Highland Avenue, Helena, Montana ~ Private