You might think that 217 South Wyoming would lie between Mercury and Silver Streets, and you’d be right—but in the 1880s and early 1890s there was another 217 South Wyoming, between Second and Third Streets in South Butte. South Butte was separate and distinct from Butte, with its own street address system and its own population accounting until about 1895.
That house at 217 S. Wyoming, later 919 S. Wyoming, was built at Blackfoot City and moved into South Butte in 1883 by John H. McQueeney, establishing the first residence in that neighborhood. McQueeney was born in 1843 in New Haven, Connecticut, to Irish immigrants, Patrick and Catherine (nee McHugh) who took young John (second of eight children and the only survivor in 1900) with them to Chicago in 1854. After working in various Chicago businesses including ink manufacturing, about 1880 John headed west and became a cashier with the Utah & Northern Railroad (the first railroad into Butte, in 1881). He arrived in Butte in 1883 and established a transfer company or delivery service. He did well, allowing him to expand into real estate and other investments.
|943 S. Wyoming (at Second St.): gone today. |
The pre-1891 house at right (with the bluish roof) survives.
In 1916, McQueeney’s original house at 919 S. Wyoming was gone, replaced by stables and a corral associated probably with his transfer company. The big house on the corner, 943 S. Wyoming, was lost sometime after 1957, but elements of the retaining wall survive, recalling the unusually spacious yard. In 1928, John and Isabella McQueeney's son Frederick was still living in the house at 943 and managing the McQueeney Transfer and Storage Company.
So far as I can determine, John McQueeney has no connection with the name of the McQueen neighborhood.
Thanks to Pat Armstrong for guidance and for the initial question, and for the image of the house at 943 S. Wyoming (via Jean Johanson). Additional resources: Progressive Men of the State of Montana (1901); city directories at Butte Archives; Sanborn maps.