Front Room/Door to the Kitchen, Return to the Borntrager Homestead
This is the front room in the Borntrager Homestead. I love that revolving cupboard! The door goes into the kitchen.
I hope everyone who sees this photo can think of this as more than just a room full of "junk". These things used to belong to the Borntrager family, Glenn, Esther and Floyd--just a few names of people who have been in this house (their history is below).
This is a video of the livingroom, my dad was in the sunroom looking through the suitcases--we did not take anything:
If you would like to see more photos of this amazing place, check out the set I took in April! Look out for the photos I took of the old letters--they are interesting!
I've decided to post photos of the Borntrager homestead. It's not spooky, but it is haunting. This farm house (and outbuildings) are full of things left behind by the family who last lived there-the Borntragers. From all that I have found they were very spiritual people--Mennonites and from exploring their home I feel that I have also gotten to know the people who used to live there. This homestead is very near and dear to my heart and it was hard for me to return and see it all again but I feel that this place deserves to be remembered somehow. Please enjoy the photos I'll be posting in the coming weeks of the Borntrager homestead and keep in mind that everything left behind belonged to a family who hopefully enjoyed living their life on their beautiful eastern Montana farm.
Here are two videos I took (in June and April respectively) of the homestead. They can give you a better feeling for this wonderful place:
The Borntrager Homestead is my favorite abandoned homestead I have ever happened upon. I feel that in my short time exploring the property I got to know the family. I learned some of their names, saw their abandoned belongings and read their handwritten letters left behind. Even though I haven't visited the homestead for awhile now, I think of it often, wishing I could save it and everything left behind in it. It's a peaceful home, not creepy at all, formerly owned by a Mennonite family.
I always respect the homesteads I explore. This one did not have a no trespassing sign. I did not take or ruin anything, I simply took pictures to remember this place by long after it is gone.
Here is a history of the people who lived in the home.
Esther Kauffman died Feb. 12, 2006, at Brendan House in Kalispell, Mont. She was born Feb. 13, 1920, to Glen Joseph and Cora May (Chupp) Borntrager in rural Dawson County near Bloomfield.
She was baptized upon confession of faith at Red Top Mennonite Church in 1933, and on Nov. 8, 1946, was received into membership at Mountain View Mennonite Church, Creston, where she remained a lifelong member.
She was a 1940 graduate of Dawson County High School. As a young woman she lived a year in Oregon, where she worked at various jobs, mainly as a housekeeper or maid.
On May 31, 1943, she married Paul S. Kauffman at Red Top Mennonite Church, Bloomfield. They lived in the Bloomfield area, and in Glendive, in the first years of their marriage, where she worked variously in a laundry and taught school for most of a year.
In 1946 she moved to Creston with her husband. As the mother of seven children her life was full of homemaking, and her assistance as go-getter, bookkeeper and general helper in both logging and farming were indispensable.
Her sweet Christian spirit, her depth of spirituality and her commitment to Christ were appreciated. She was a good musician. The alto section in church choral groups leaned on her accuracy, and for a number of years she enjoyed singing in the Sweet Adelines.
Survivors include her husband, Paul S. Kauffman; three sons, Daniel D. Kauffman and his wife, Debbie, Kenneth G. Kauffman and his wife, Frieda, and Stephen G. Kauffman and his wife, Ginger, all of Kalispell; three daughters, E. Elaine Kauffman of Mountain Lake, Minn., Brenda M. Younger and her husband, Steven, of Stratton, Colo., and Alice L. Arneson and her husband, Richard, of Bothell, Wash.; a brother, Mahlon Borntrager of Glendive; two sisters-in-law, Effie Borntrager of Glendive and Violetta Borntrager of Mobile, Ala.; 14 grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by three daughters, Eileen, Arlene and Rebecca Ann; two sisters, Lillie Greiman and Lena Boese; and three brothers, Floyd Borntrager, Elmer Borntrager and Oscar Borntrager.
Glen was born on February 27, 1886 and passed away in April 1968.
Glen was last known to be living in Bloomfield, Montana.
Kauffman, Esther Borntrager, 85, of Kalispell, MT died February 12, 2006 at Kalispell, Flathead Co., MT of heart failure. She was born February 13, 1920 at Bloomfield, Dawson Co., MT to Glen Joseph & Cora May (Chupp) Borntrager.
Cora May (Chupp) Borntrager was born May 31, 1891 and died September 25, 1982.
Glen Joseph Borntrager was born February 27, 1886 and died April 14, 1968.
On May 31, 1943 Esther was married to Paul S. Kauffman, who survives.
Surviving are children, E. Elaine Kauffman; Daniel D Kauffman (Debbie); Kenneth G Kauffman (Frieda); Stephen G Kauffman (Ginger); Brenda M Younger (Steven); Alice L Arneson (Richard), 14 grandchildren, and 3 great-grandchildren.
Three daughters are deceased: Eileen; Arlene; and Rebecca Ann.
Also surviving is a brother, Mahlon Borntrager. She was predeceased by siblings: Floyd Borntrager; Elmer Borntrager; Lena Boese; Lillie Greiman; and Oscar Borntrager.
The funeral was held February 17, 2006 at Mountain View Mennonite Church, Kalispell, MT with burial in the Fairview Cemetery, Kalispell, Flathead Co., MT.
She was a member of Mennonite Church USA.
Borntrager, Glen Joseph, son of Joseph J. and Barbara (Moyer) Borntrager, was born at Harper, Kan., Feb. 27, 1886; died at Bloomfield, Mont., Apr. 13, 1968; aged 82 y. 1 m. 17 d. On Dec. 3, 1907, he was married to Cora May Chupp, who survives. Also surviving are 4 sons (Floyd, Elmer, Mahlon, and Oscar), 3 daughter (Lillie-Mrs. Loyd Greiman, Lena-Mrs. Alfred Boese, and Esther-Mrs. Paul Kauffman), 30 grandchildren, and 9 great-grandchildren. He was the last survivor of his family. Five grandchildren also preceded him in death. He was a member of the Red Top Church, where funeral services were held Apr. 17, with Jonas Beachy and Floyd Kauffman officiating.