203 North Rodney Street

Title

203 North Rodney Street

Description

An early one-story wooden dwelling stood here by 1884, replaced by 1888 with a two-story brick residence, set slightly back from the street. The home soon found itself ensconced in a busy commercial district. Neighbors included saloons, grocery stores, and the Iowa House Hotel (since demolished), where renowned Métis revolutionary Louis Riel stayed during a brief visit to Helena in 1882. Just south, on the corner lot, was T. L. Matthews' East Side Meat Market, which advertised "Poultry, fish, and oysters. Game in season. Salt and fresh meats." In approximately 1895, Matthews purchased the brick residence and transformed it into a business block by adding a new façade flush with the street. The remodeled first floor featured large plate-glass windows, facilitating display of the market's wares. The second story became apartments. The elaborate sheet metal cornice perched along the roofline reflects the flamboyant architectural tastes of the 1890s. By the 1930s, when the Helena earthquakes hit, the meat market had become the Cash Grocery. Earthquake damage likely explains the owner's decision to stucco over the original brick in 1939.

Creator

The Montana National Register Sign Program

Type

commercial buildings
apartments
building | contributing

District

Helena Historic District

Street Address

203 North Rodney Street, Helena, Montana

County

Lewis and Clark county