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Blackfoot Valley Dispatch
Lincoln , Montana
July 28, 2016     Blackfoot Valley Dispatch
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July 28, 2016

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JULY 28, 2016 BLACKFOOT VALLEY DISPATCH PAGE 7 Ellen and Pat Mulcare on their wedding day. Pat & Ellen sometime in the 1990's. (Photos courtesy Ellen Mulcare) I'm here. So, I'm going to go back and I'm going to go to summer school this sum- mer.'" After putting Afton on the train to Anchorage, where she could fly out to Seattle and then take the train home to Lincoln, Ellen returned to the base. "I stayed for the summer. In the meantime, they had a little officers' bar, and this guy I married tended bar," she said. "My friend Myrtle and I would go in there once in a while and have a steak, and I met Pat [Mulcare]. Ellen and Pat went on several dates that summer, but then Pat was discharged and returned to Oregon, where he was from. Ellen had intended to stay on in Alaska and teach, but she had trouble finding a posi- tion. Meanwhile, Pat kept calling her. "I was going to work there at the base and I couldn't seem to get on. They didn't need teachers, they had teachers. I thought well, heck. I'll get married. So I drove back by myself. I didn't have a lot of fiats that time, and I didn't have any holes in my gas tank. But it was quite an experience." Ellen and Pat married in Lincoln in 1953. "Wow, what a party," she recalled. After the wedding, Ellen joined Pat in Oregon, where she contin- ued work- ing toward her teaching degree. But - a Montana girl at heart - she found she missed home. "I got to thinking 'God I want to go back to Mon- tana.' I knew my folks wanted to sell, so I talked Pat into going back with me, and talked my folks into letting us buy the place from them." In 1955 Ellen and Pat took over the Lincoln Hotel and began raising a family, all the while helping to build the town of Lincoln along- side contemporaries such as Cecil Garland. "We'd sell a lotor two, and then build more," Ellen said. "Every year Pat would find something more to build on. I'd just get one note paid off, and he'd start on some new project. I became a book- keeper, having to figure out how much I still owed." Ellen remembers the middle years of the twenti- eth century as some of the best in Lincoln. 'Tkfter WoddWar II was over and the power came in and people had ajob... things began to pick up," she said. "That was wonder- ful." Among other business ventures, Ellen and Pat built the original Handi-Mart filling station on the comer of Stemple Pass Road and Highway 200, and Pat was one of the founding mem- bers of the First Bank of Lincoln. Ellen has been known all of her life for her inde- pendence and love of the great outdoors. An avid and accomplished hunter, she was still filling elk tags in her eighties. She was also an ac- tive board member of such organizations as the Upper Blackfoot Historical Soci- ety and the Bluebird Trails Society. For Ellen, that famed independence is a matter of course. "I learned many, many years ago that if you want to do it, do it yourself," she said. "Not everybody is go- ing to come and help you." Widowed after 54 years of marriage and still stub- bornly independent despite having bowed to necessity and moved from her home of 41 years to a retirement community in Helena, Ellen remains Lincoln's reigning matriarch. "I think I'm about the oldest old timer left," she said of the generation who helped build Lincoln. Last week she reflected on why she chose to spend her long and eventful life in Lincoln. "The type of things Lin- coln offers are what I love," she said. "To hunt, fish, and get up in those mountains and think to yourself 'you know, this stump I'm sit- ting on, no man has ever sat on before.' Each time I'd go hunt, I didn't care if I even saw anything. I just loved seeing the country. I have walked the complete circumference of that valley during my hunting experi- ences." "It's changed a lot, but the land is still there. It's the land I love." On the rails Two cyclists pass workers installing a guard rail along the approach to the bridge over the Blackfoot River on Stemple Pass Road Tuesday morning. Guard rails are being installed on both sides of the bridge, and on the two bridges over Poorman Creek to the south as part of the road resurfacing project. Concerns about the lack of guard rails leading to the bridge, Which have been raised at Community Council and Government Day meet- ing in recent years, were highlighted~in 2014 when the driver of a northbound missed the corner and the car o~d/~ up on its roof along the river bed.(Photo by Roger Dey) Adoptable from Paws Up Safe Home My name is Boomer I am a 4-year-old, wet, St. Bernard. I'm powerful, friendly, love to run and think rm a lap dog. I don't get along chickens and cats and need a big fence with a heavy gate to keep me safe. Looking for someone to work with me who has a lot of room for me to run and play. Stop by and check out Boomer and more than 40 other dogs, cats and horses available for adoption at Paws Up (please call first). Photos posted on Paws Up Safe Home Facebook page. Volunteers and donations always welcome! [Contact Paws Up Safe Home, Potomac ~ 406-244-2552 or email Follow Paws Up on 362-3092 Open 11am--9pm Every Day Serving Lunch & Dinner Daily Sub Daily Specials Homemade Soup Hand Dipped Milk Shakes Burgers, Fries, Pizza, Wings, Homemade Soup, Sandwiches, Salads, Milkshakes, Ice Cream Movie Rentals Party/Meeting Room c., Pizza 362- 3093 Wild Jacks Casino 362-3094 Gamblers Drink for Free 6 a.m.-10 p.m. Sun-ThtL~ * 6 a.m. - 11 p.m. Fri & Sat