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Collection 296 - Eliel Brothers Records, 1896-1931

Creator: Eliel Brothers (firm)

Provenance Note: Financial record books created and maintained by the Eliel Brothers mercantile establishment of Dillon, Montana were donated to Special Collections by Lambert and Eirene Eliel of Mesa, Arizona on July 31, 1968. This collection was reported to the National Union Catalog of Manuscript Collections in 1979 and assigned control number 79-651.

Historical Note: Lambert, Leonard, and Adolph Eliel were merchants from Indiana who operated a mobile trading store along the Union Pacific railroad as it extended its branch line to Montana in the latter half of the 1870s. Sometime prior to 1880 the Eliel brothers operated a store in Evanston, Wyoming, and but they moved their operation north from Corrine, Utah as the rail line construction continued. In 1880, when the tracks reached Beaverhead County, Montana, the Eliel brothers established their permanent store in what would later become Dillon, Montana. In addition to building their business in Dillon, they continued to operate branch stores in Dewey, Montana and Gibbonsville, Idaho for several years. In 1882, Frank Eliel joined his three older brothers in the business. The Eliel Brothers store was a general mercantile operation that first incorporated in 1910 with Adolph, Frank, and Leonard as its board of directors and other family members as shareholders. The store continued operation until 1965 when Lambert Eliel Jr. sold the business and moved to Arizona.

Content Description Note: The Eliel Brothers records consist of three financial record books that document the transactions of the company from 1896 to 1931. Volume one is an account ledger that summarizes transactions by individual and corporate vendors and customers from 1896 to 1919. Volume two is also an account ledger documenting transactions from 1919 to 1929. Volume three is a "combined record book" that contains laid in documents and written entries that detail incorporation applications, shareholder meeting minutes, and board of director meeting minutes from 1910 to 1931. An additional folder contains loose documents pertaining to financial statements, shareholder information, a draft of the original 1910 incorporation charter, and a photograph of the Eliel Brother's branch store in Gibbonsville, Idaho.

Updated: 11/19/09