FRED & IRENE WETZSTEON
There was a happy golden wedding anniversary
observance at the Corvallis Masonic hall Sunday afternoon when a large crowd
of friends and relatives gathered to salute Fred an Irene Wetzsteon whose
marriage of 50 years previous was good cause for celebration. The assemblage
visited in the hall, renewing acquaintances that had themselves become golden
from the passage of time. Grandchildren of the honored couple served as greeters,
took pictures, and handled the guest book and helped make the guests comfortable.
It was a nice party with people gathered
from all parts of the valley to do honor to Irene and Fred, while a large
number of friends and relatives who reside beyond the borders of Ravalli
County sent cards and other testimonials of greeting and affection.
Irene Mae Holmes was born in Williamsport, Pennsylvania,
June 24, 1906, but came to Montana with her parents when she was a small child.
She was reared in the Troy area, graduating from highschool there. She then
attended Kinman Business College in Spokane before enrolling at Montana State
University in Missoula. She was graduated in 1929 with a BA degree in business
administration and economics. Mrs. Wetzsteon, it is testified by one who
knows, "is an artist with a needle and a sewing machine and an excellent
cook." She also is an avid reader.
John Fredrick Wetzsteon was born August 29, 1906
at Sula, son of one of the Early settling couples who located in Ross Hole
(Sula Basin). There he attained manhood while attending and graduating from
Hamilton High School in 1923. Later, he attended Montana State University
School of Journalism at Missoula and he also worked for John R. Daily Company,
first as a delivery boy and later as a master butcher.
Mrs. Wetzsteon is a past matron of Leona Chapter
No. 31 OES, while her husband is a past patron of the same organization. He
is also a past master of Ionic Lodge No. 38, AF & AM, past grand commander
of the Grand Commandery of Montana Knights Templar, past potentate of Bagdad
Shrine temple at Butte.
Fred is also former director of the Montana Stock
Growers Association and both he and his wife have held positions in the Montana
Farm Bureau. He was twice elected as a Ravalli County Representative in the
Legislature as a Republican, in 1952 and 1954.
Following their marriage, the Wetzsteons in 1928
bought the Francis place on the East Fork, which they still own. They resided
there for the next 48 years and it is still "home" despite the fact they have
a new home on the middle road between Corvallis and Hamilton. They divide
their time between the two places but it is plain where their lasting affection
Mr. and Mrs. Wetzsteon became the parents
of a daughter, Astrid, who is now the wife of Jack Morris, an outstanding
farmer and rancher of the Corvallis district whose roots in this valley go
far back as his parents and grandparents were likewise early settlers.
They have four grandchildren. One granddaughter is a school teacher, one
is in her sophomore year at Montana College of Mineral Science and Technology
in Butte, one is a sophomore at Corvallis High School, and a grandson is a
senior at Western Montana College at Dillon.
This article cannot be complete without recognition
of other members of the Wetzsteon family who over the period of many years
of hard work and planning built a strong livestock ranching base in the Ross
Hole, and particularly to the venerable Mrs. Jacob (Mary) Wetzsteon, now a
resident of Valley View Estates in Hamilton, mother of Fred and his brothers
The Western News, December 31, 1975