Eagle Rock: Growing Up Rich In Idaho: Coming of age as a non-Mormon in a Mormon world.

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Several borrowers who had failed to heed her advice concerning their business transactions were refused loans when they petitioned a second time.

Nor was Minnie above giving her opinion about her customers' personal lives. One Idaho Falls woman recalled being in the bank when Minnie walked over to her, put an arm around her shoulders, and remarked pointedly, "You married a real man, but I don't like that kid your sister married! They sold their building at Broadway to Frank M. Bybee, a grocery merchant doing business next door. With plans to enlarge the Idaho Falls National Bank building, both institutions would be housed in the same location. The merger combined assets that were "in excess of three and one-half million dollars," and did business as Anderson Bros.

Officers and directors of the reorganized institution were: M.

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Full text of "Second stories revisited : historical narratives of Idaho Falls women"

Eccles, president; E. Bennett, vice president; Victor Austin, vice president; M. Johnson, vice president; M. Hitt, cashier; James E. Steele, chairman of board; G. Wright, director; J. Blair, director; C. Cline, director; Christian Anderson, director; G. Willsey, assistant cashier. In , when the bank became part of a national system, the name was changed to First Security Bank of Idaho, National Association. She retained her title, but lost some of her influence.

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Her personal prerogative concerning loans was greatly curtailed. Over the years, Minnie's once petite figure had expanded, and as the ladies in the bank recalled, "She looked like an icebox. Minnie still enjoyed shopping for fine clothes, shoes, and cosmetics. Needing a model and choosing one that not only looked like her younger self but was handy as well, Minnie scooped up her secretary and headed for the town's finest stores.

Hart remembered the luxurious furs and latest fashions in the Fair Store, "the most beautiful store in the valley.

Next, they might be off to try on shoes at the Berry and Ball, or to the Frock and Bonnet because "you just weren't dressed if you didn't have a gorgeous hat. These special shopping days always included lunch, and Minnie liked to stroll to downtown cafes where she could stay in touch with the city's other business people while she ate. After a meal she would hand her chamois skin moneybag to the young waitress and instruct her, "Just take out what you need.

Hart saw hanging in Minnie's wardrobe many of the expensive dresses and fur coats she had modeled in the downtown stores. Stacked against the wall were countless shoe boxes containing high-heeled pumps in rainbow colors. On the dressing table were the colored rouges that Minnie loved to apply in bright round circles on each cheek.


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There also were the perfumes that for a final touch Minnie sprayed on heavily, sometimes mixing two or three different scents, that caused Elizabeth Orr to remark, "You could smell her all over the bank. For the bank she chose plain, professional skirts and blouses and walked to work in oxfords that she resoled. Yet, to rediscover that elegant attire in her home was to discover a side of Minnie Hitt that her secretary had never considered. It was not her daytime outings and those afternoons spent watching untold reels of Fredrick March or Jeanette McDonald — she never missed a picture change at the Colonial, Rio.

Acquaintances and workers remembered that "Minnie loved to dance and all the men danced with Minnie. She often waited for the front doors to close behind the dancers and the back doors to open for the gamblers. Welcome in any of the town's backrooms, she could, as local stories go, be dealt into a poker game and invited to sit at a table with doctors, attorneys, or any number of other professionals— even, on occasion, some of the city fathers. Perhaps they shared a drink of alcohol that was difficult but not impossible to get in the dry 's and 30's. A little effort and a lot of skullduggery would produce a bottle or two from any one of the local stills or a bootlegger from Canada, maybe.

Raymond Burger was the physician in charge of health services at the Civilian Conservation Corps camp at nearby Swan Valley. The story goes that he ventured down to Idaho Falls and inquired of the city's leading physician who was the richest widow in town. Hastily, he was informed that the town's richest widow was already spoken for, but the second richest widow, the banker Minnie Hitt, was available. Burger courted Minnie, and in , they were married. She was sixty-nine years old, had been a widow for twenty-seven of them, and Dr. Burger was almost thirty years her junior.

If her money again was at stake, as the tongues in town all wagged, she gave it freely. She paid for the doctor to study eye surgery at Columbia University.

Why I left

The Burgers' ambiguous and often misunderstood lifestyle violated the community's sense of propriety and gave rise to rumors and half-truths. Close friends maintained that this union, like her marriage to Frank, was a compatible partnership. Minnie understood her husband's alternative ways, and he in turn treated her with kindness and respect, once nursing her through a severe illness.

Unable to establish a practice in Idaho Falls, Dr. Burger moved to southern California. Minnie remained at the bank, but each year at Christmas, friends drove her to Salt Lake City where her husband met her.


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Together they would continue on to California by train. In , at the age of seventy-four, Minnie Hitt retired from the bank and moved to Santa Monica, California. Idabel Linger reported to the Presbyterian minister in Idaho Falls that she had visited her cousin Minnie who "seemed quite happy. Barbara Frew Koster, whose father had worked for Frank Hitt years before, took charge of Minnie's personal items after her death. Sorting through the collection, she discovered an aged bundle of letters. All from Frank; all postmarked Yellowstone Park and written before they were married.

Sad that she had discovered her friend's tender secret, Barbara quietly burned each one. She explained, "Frank may have been a ne'er do well, but he sure had a way with the ladies. It is a monument to the hard work and determination of Minnie Gibson Hitt who rose to a position of prominence in the community that she had served so well. Throughout her colorful, sometimes sad but never dull career, she held fast to her belief in the ability of the citizens of southeastern Idaho to use their resources and talents to build prosperous farms and businesses. Harbor House, Edith Haroldsen.

Based on reference to the new bridge over the river, the article could have been written in November Martin, c. The Blackfoot Register, 14 July Barbara Frew, interview by Cheryl A. Cox and Lexie Ann French. Personal biographical information or any dialogue that has been attributed to Minnie and Frank Hitt was suggested by the contents of this interview.

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I-B, Vol. Given that Joseph Gulick interviewed members of his congregation for the church's history, the personal data for Minnie M. Gibson Hitt is accepted as he presented. However Birth, Death and Marriage records available through Ancestry.

By William Alexander Linn

Her death record indicates Minnie M. Burger's mother's maiden name was Blue, not Ramsey. Census records indicate her birth year could have been , The Blackfoot Register, 16 Nov Robert Anderson had been appointed Postmaster in December when the Eagle Rock post office was established, but returned to the east, leaving the job to others. Several appointees would follow until his brother. Clark, Boise: Boise State University, , The Idaho Register, 19 July ,8.

Hitt," The Idaho Register, 5 May Hart, Vera Pfost, interview by Cheryl A. Cox and Lexie Ann French, 20 Sept Cox and Lexie Ann French, 22 Aug Monson, Johnnie, interview by Cheryl A. Cox and Lexie Ann French, 1 October Hart, Vera Pfost, 20 Sept Kenney, Mozell, interview by Cheryl A. Orr, Elizabeth Jane, interview by Cheryl A.

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