From 'Echoing Footsteps', published 1967, Powder River County Extension Homemakers Council
By Mrs. Ben Geist
Ben Geist was born in Des Moines, Iowa, in 1893. When he was 3 years old he came to Rosebud, Montana, with his mother and two sisters. His father met them there and took them by team and wagon to his homestead on Tongue River. I, Mabel Steele, was born at Carrington, North Dakota, and came to Rosebud with my parents when I was only 4 years old. I later went to business college in Miles City and worked there until I married Ben Geist on December 14, 1921. We bought a home in Miles City, and on March 25, 1923, our daughter Maryalys was born. She married Pete Helfrich, who works in a bank in Billings, where they make their home with their two children. In 1929, we went into a partnership with Emil Henning. In July of 1931, a disastrous hail storm swept through this area and wiped many residents out completely, taking crops and grass. So Mr. Henning had to run his place himself, and for three years we rented the Whistling Dick place, then owned by Molly Daly Bartholomew. At the end of that time we moved back to the Henning place for 21/2 years. Upon leaving the Henning place, we moved to Victor, Montana, which is near Hamilton, and bought a business. Later we sold it and moved back to Ashland. There we opened up a cafe and Ben became the proprietor of the State Liquor Store. After the disastrous fire that almost swept Ashland off the map we eventually retired to Joliet, Montana, where we now have our home.