William Preston McGrady

Important Dates
BornOctober 11 1856Carroll County, Virginia
MarriedNovember 25, 1877-
August 12, 1912(Her Death)
Laura G Edwards
Child BornJune 19, 1879Elmer Jefferson McGrady
Child BornNovember 1880Mary McGrady
Child BornApril 30, 1882John William McGrady
Child BornApril 30, 1884Emma Belle McGrady
Child BornJune 25, 1885Lawrence M McGrady
Child BornMarch 10, 1887Maude E "Lizzy" McGrady
Child BornJanuary 14, 1889Margaret Rosalie McGrady
Child BornJanuary 17, 1894Fred M McGrady
Child Born1896Carrie Gertrude McGrady
Child Born1898Estel Earl McGrady
Child Born1902Walter Glen McGrady
DiedFebruary 11, 1920Clyde Park, Montana

This account is told by William and Laura's daughter Carrie when she was 87.

William Preston McGrady and wife Laura along with six (6) small children left Hillsvillet Carroll County, Virginia on an Emigrant train in May 1888 for Dillon, Montana. They were ten days on the way from the state of Virginia to Dillon, Montana. They changed trains in Chicago where they stayed one night in a hotel. It was the only time they were off the train in that length of time They were met there by my Laura's Uncle, Jessie Bird, and taken by team and a big wagon to Laurin, Montana, where a log house on Jessie Bird's farm was and where they lived for a short time. Later they moved to a two room log house on the Conrey Ranch, where William worked

Later my father bought a team of horses and wagon and hauled freight from Dillon to Virginia City, Montana. He did not pan for gold.

A gold dredg company bought the Conrey., Bird and Rogers farm and dredged for gold on Ruby Creek. My father leased the farms and we moved to the seven room house that was the Conrey Ranch, the Conrey's had moved to Alder., Montana where they owned a farm.

Several dredges were built and many men were needed$ so the little town of Ruby, Montana sprung up, a number of hotnes were built and I remember three saloons, a boarding house and later a hotel.

The children had been walking several miles to school called The Taylor School, so a one room school was built on the farm my father leased, which made it nice for our familyq we walked across the field to schoolq steDs were built over the fence to the town of Ruby.

'Shen I was about ten years old my parents bought a farm several miles from Laurin, a small town with two general merchandise stores, our Post Office was in the Johnson Store, several saloons and houses were built, here was where my father built a log cabin and where the boys sl ept, it became part of the house. We had a large apple orchard my father planted one hundred or more apple trees.

The family grew up and my mother died in 1912. The family scattered so father sold the farm and went to Wilsall,, Montana to live near my brother Elmer who lived with his family of eight children. He died there February 1920, he is buried in the Taylor Cemetery at Alder, Montana., next to my mother. Five brothers are buried there also.

The farms were filled with rocks from the dredges, what land there is left is owned by Leslie Gilman - along with the house and office left by the Conrey Placer Mining Co., also if they are standing, the log cabins-.

When Jessie Bird came to Montana from Virginia he changed the spelling of Byrd to Bird.