Like many early Butte residents, Elizabeth Lochrie started in Deer Lodge. Elizabeth Tangye Davey was born there July 1, 1890. Her paternal grandfather had come to Montana in 1866 seeking gold; his son, her father, moved to Deer Lodge in 1887. Her mother May (nee Rogers) had Cornish ancestry.
In Deer Lodge, Elizabeth’s father trained horses, reportedly selling some to Marcus Daly. He was killed by a ruffian when Elizabeth was 12, and her mother was supported in part by philanthropy from some of Butte’s finest, including businessman Dan Hennessey. She also taught school in Butte, commuting from Deer Lodge.
While Elizabeth had shown interest in art from an early age, her first formal training was in about 1904, with Deer Lodge native Vonna Owings, who had studied in San Francisco and went on to become a founder of California’s Laguna Beach Art Festival. Elizabeth graduated from Brooklyn’s Pratt Art Institute in 1911 and returned to Deer Lodge where she married bank manager Arthur Lochrie.
|Lochrie home at West Granite and Emmett Streets|
By 1928, as Arthur’s career expanded, the Lochries moved to Helena and Spokane, and eventually (1931) to Butte where Arthur was president of the Miners Bank. Their Butte home at 1102 West Granite Street still stands. It formed their household, Elizabeth’s studio, and an exhibition gallery for her increasingly well-respected work.
Elizabeth Lochrie is most noted for her depictions of Native Americans and their settings, and she is a fixture in most books on western art. One of the last exhibitions in her lifetime was in the late 1970s, at the Charles Clark Art Chateau in Butte, where some of her works are on permanent display. She continued to live in Butte until a few years before her death—she moved to Ojai, California to be near her daughter, and died there in 1981.
Primary biography: A HALF-CENTURY OF PAINTINGS BY ELIZABETH LOCHRIE, By Betty Lochrie Hoag McGlynn, with gallery of paintings.