Between the s and s, the town had Chinese restaurants, laundries and a house of prostitution on a block between Anderson and Prostitutte streets, billlings short distance from the Northern Pacific Railroad tracks. Between andthe town was home to an estimated 30 to 40 Chinese residents, about 10 percent of the population. In the census, Big Timber recorded only eight Asian-born residents in the town of 1, Town Connection Moschelle lived in Big Timber for four years, graduating from high school there in
It was during that time that he heard tales billnigs the Chinese-run businesses and the supposed network of underground tunnels that connected them. Between andthe town was home to an estimated 30 to 40 Chinese residents, about 10 percent of the population.
Salon co-owner Sara Hunt said when she was growing up in Big Timber, she heard stories about the former Chinese settlement in town. Other students came from across the country, including Michigan and Missouri. As of June 10 the dig had produced 25, artifacts.
chinrse Town Connection Moschelle lived in Big Timber for four years, graduating from high school there in Immigration laws initially prevented Chinese women from coming to the U. He postulated that the windows may have been next to underground cribs for prostitutes surrounding a basement bar.
The railroad also brought in Chinese laborers, many of whom were farmers that had fled civil strife in their own country in the mid s and were seeking wealth in America. Hard Labor of Love Sarah Erwin, 18, of Billings is one of the students who paid to help out at the Big Timber dig site while earning college credit.
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Then this spring, Merritt recruited 10 students for the field work that started on Chindse 25 and ended on June 13, Among the more fascinating finds for Moschelle was an intact bluing ball, a marble-sized piece of blue cobalt used in a Chinese laundry to brighten clothes. Part of the dig is taking place directly behind the Shear Chaos boutique, hair and nail salon.
The fire was ignited by a spark from the Northern Pacific Railroad, which paid for the damages. In the census, Big Timber recorded only eight Asian-born residents in the town of 1, By the s, the brothel was closed.
And an old manhole cover in front of what used to be the Blakeslee Hotel next door also le into what appears to be an underground passageway. Between the s and s, the town had Chinese restaurants, laundries and a house of prostitution on a block between Anderson and Billins streets, a short distance from the Northern Pacific Railroad tracks.
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The balls were also believed to ward off evil spirits and bring good luck when gambling. Prostotute to five single-white females lived at the residence.
A Montana State University Billings student, Erwin heard about the dig from her history professor and quickly ed up. Inthe Northern Pacific relocated an Irish settlement called Dornix Gaelic for large, smooth stones that was located near the confluence chjnese the Boulder and Yellowstone rivers. Chinse there was little information about the former inhabitants, which piqued his curiosity.
So last year, he and fellow UM graduate students Chris Merritt and Brent Rowley used ground penetrating radar in the parking lot to mark out possible dig sites and excavated a 1-foot by 2-foot test pit that turned up artifacts.