Biographies of Old Settlers Days grand marshals

Wednesday, August 21, 2019
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DEAN GILBERT

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GEORGIA HOGENSON

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CAROL WOODLEY

Old Settlers Days has three grand marshals this year. Following are biographies of each of them.

GEORGIA HOGENSON

Georgia Wilson Hogenson was born July 9,1934, to George F. Wilson and Hettie Stephenson Wilson. She was born at Mrs. Robertson’s Maternity Hospital in Livingston. She joined sisters Margie, 10, and Irma, 7. Margie died of cancer in 1937.

Her father was born in Glendive in 1892 and lived there until enlisting in the Army to serve in World War I. Her mother was born in 1906 in Goren, Missouri. After spending time in the Wilsall area in 1915, Hettie’s dad moved to Wilsall in 1917. The family arrived by train on a wet, cold, snowy, windy, muddy April day.

George and Hettie met at a barn dance in the spring of 1923 and were married Oct. 1, 1923. The family lived around Wilsall until 1941 when George accepted a job with a construction company putting small airports in undisclosed places during World War II.

Georgia started school in Wilsall and graduated with the Wilsall class of 1953. In between she attended school in North Carolina, Alabama, Wisconsin, Idaho, Polson, Drummond, and Deer Lodge. She promised herself that if she had children, they would never move while in school. She kept that promise as her four children spent all their school years in the Wilsall School.

Georgia spent the summer of 1950 helping her sister Irma at the Lovely Ranch. Irma was married to Kenny Lovely. One day a tall, blond, blue-eyed Norwegian stopped by looking for his cousin Kenny Lovely. He was Roy Hogenson who worked at the Buck and Eva Sasse Ranch a few miles away. In the spring of 1953, Georgia attended an Alumni Ball in Clyde Park. Roy was there and asked her to dance a number of times. They dated for several months and were married Nov. 19, 1953, in Wilsall.

They ranched with Joel Hegre for six years on the Nancy Brown Ranch on Upper Cottonwood. Their children — Linda, Juliann, John and David — were born while they were there. They bought their house in Wilsall and Roy worked logging and construction until he was appointed postmaster of the Wilsall Post Office in 1966.

He retired in 1986 and they enjoyed camping, fishing and a little traveling.

Roy passed away in 2008. Georgia is still in the family home and enjoys playing cards, having coffee with friends and attending church. She has 27 grandchildren, 37 great-grandchildren and one great-great-granddaughter.

Georgia says, “God is good, through many sorrows and great joy; God always provides and supplies all our needs. Yes, God is good!”

CAROL WOODLEY

Carol Hunter Woodley was born in Livingston, Nov. 8, 1935 the daughter of Thomas “Tom” and Nancy “Betty” McHenry Hunter. Her family lived at Elton for about nine months after she was born at her dad’s Uncle Charlie Francis’s ranch.

In 1936-37 the folks leased the land on Cottonwood Bench from an insurance company that had repossessed it. They were able to purchase the land by cutting down the Juniper trees for posts and selling them to make the down payment. Carol’s siblings, Mary Karell, Margery “Marge” Chapman, Tom Hunter and Suzanne “Suz” Walker were all raised on the ranch.

They rode saddle horses to grade school at the Sumner School. The winter of 1948-49 was very similar to this last winter. The snow was deep and riding to school was hard. Once they left the house, their folks never knew what they were doing until they got back home.

When Carol was old enough, she helped her dad move the cattle to the Bush place near Sedan. She always had to be in the back of the herd to keep the calves from laying down and getting lost. A few times they would put the calves on the horse and carry them until “momma” came back to look for them.

Carol joined the Wilsall Wranglers 4-H club. She started with sewing project which she sewed and ripped until the fabric was about wore out. She worked outside most of the time so wore a hat or cap and blue jeans. Her dad helped her find a nice Shorthorn steer from his herd the first year. That was the beginning of a new adventure in learning about caring for an animal to take to the Park County Fair.

Carol drove a “Model A” car to high school in Clyde Park and graduated in 1954. She met Carrol W Noyd, “Big Carrol,” at the Montana Grain Elevator when she had to go get diesel fuel for her dad’s Caterpillar. She and Carrol dated during her senior year. They were married in June 1954 and lived at Clyde Park about a month before he took the job of managing the Montana Grain Elevator at Benchland, Montana. Their son David, and daughters Debra and Leslie were born in Lewistown and twins, Marlon and Marcy were born in Great Falls. In 1965 they moved to Loma, Montana, and worked for General Mills. Big Carrol passed away in November 1969 of a massive heart attack and is buried in Clyde Park so he could always be near the Crazy Mountains.

Carol moved her family back to Clyde Park. Their kids attended the Clyde Park school, becoming very active as ball players and cheerleaders.

Carol joined “Parents without Partners” where she met Melvin James “Jim” Romsa. While they were married they both drove school buses for the Livingston School System.

After Romsa and she were divorced Carol worked for Bonnie Swandal doing water rights for the farmers and ranchers. She worked for the, Swandal, Douglass and Gilbert Law Firm a total of nearly 25 years.

Soon after the divorce from Romsa, Clifford “Dave” Clark and Carol were married in 1980. Dave worked for the BN Railroad and Carol continued to work for the law firm. Dave passed away from cancer.

Morris Woodley from Iowa and Carol were married and established a wood working shop.

Carol belongs to the Park County Genealogy Society, the Montana State Genealogical Society, the National Society of the Daughters of America. The Mount Hyalite Chapter of DAR in Bozeman. She serves as a member on several cemetery boards in Park County as well as the Park County Cemetery Board, and as Livingston Park Post #23 Auxiliary historian.

Carol has 12 grandchildren and 23 great grandchildren.

DEAN GILBERT

Dean Gilbert was born in 1938 to Ruth Hazlitt and Les Gilbert of Clyde Park.

They lived on the Fred Sumner Ranch. His brother Paul was born in 1936. They are fourth-generation members of Park County and the Shields River area. Their dad had a hand full of cows and tried to farm wheat for a living. Money was scarce so their dad got a job as a machinist with the Northern Pacific Railroad and They moved to M Street in Livingston. Dean’s brother Lynn was born there in 1941.

Neighbor Harold Bailey told Dean’s dad of the George Wilcox ranch that he had for sale that had good pasture and an excellent spring that was dependable. They stocked the place with sheep as the winters were rough and with sheep there were two crops, wool and lambs. They had a couple milk cows to supply the milk and chickens to produce meat and eggs. His dad continued to work in the Railroad shops. With a herd of sheep, one must have a sheepherder to keep out the predator’s and keep the sheep away from other bands of sheep across the fence. Dean got that job and kept it until his junior year in high school.

Dean’s school years started in 1943 with Mildred Fouts as his teacher at Fall Creek School. Paul and Dean walked the three miles to school. They carried our lunch in a flour sack, which was a sandwich and a can of Campbell tomato soup that could be warmed on the pot belly stove at lunch time. School was hard for Dean, because as he learned his “A B C” and numbers, his mind was with his dad breaking a horse, building fence or working with livestock. This was a lot more exciting and he would be out there if he wasn’t sitting in school. The teacher would bring him back to reality with a sharp wrap on the head with the yard stick.

When the Fall Creek School closed, Paul and Dean transferred to the Cowan School on the Shields River for 1946-48. Dean boarded with Carl and Judy Johnson while Paul boarded with Jack and Doris Taylor. His teachers were Judy Johnson and Helen Cassidy. This was 1946-47-48.

In 1949, Gilberts rented the Ed Chapel ranch where the snow wasn’t as deep. Paul and Dean could rode bicycles to attend school in Clyde Park.

After his folks found a ranch across the road from the school on Otter Creek near Big Timber, Dean finished grade school at Otter Creek and High School at Sweet Grass County High School. He earned awards during his senior year for being the highest judge of seeds and grains in Vo-Ag. He graduated in 1957 and attended Auto Mechanics trade school at Oregon Technical Institute in Klamath Falls, graduating in 1959.

His first paying job was working for the U.S. Forest Service building trails in the Crazy Mountains, and as fire control in the mountains at Troy, Montana. In 1959, Dean signed up for the Army Reserve with basic training at Fort Ord, California. His most enjoyable experience at Fort Ord was standing guard duty, watching over Monterey Bay during the night. His five years in the military service was up in 1965 after serving in California, Florida, Georgia and Montana.

Returning home after military service, Dean found that very few jobs existed. He got on a seismograph crew in Wolf Point. Paul had gone down to Georgia with neighbors and reported back that there were jobs available. Dean went to Georgia and got a job with AT&T, Southern Bell. After passing tests and a security check in 1966, he started training in basic electricity, working at Covington, Georgia and then worked up to Atlanta, Georgia.

He stayed with Southern Bell, a few years then met and married the niece of one of his coworkers, Billie Jo (Stephenson) Hynote. They were married 43 years and raised two sons. She died in 2011.

Dean transferred to Mountain Bell in Glendive, Montana, in 1970 where son Dan was born in 1971. Dean transferred to Livingston where son Judson was born 1972.

He transferred with his family to Bozeman about 1980. In 1984, AT&T announced they were going out of business and Dean went to work for a company in Denver.

When Dean’s career ended in Denver, he retired and moved back to Park County in 1991.

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