The Rev. Lewis J. Duncan, former mayor of
Butte, died Monday night of pneumonia, in a hospital at Rochester, Minn.
Notification of his death was received by his window and son in
Butte yesterday. His death
followed a short illness, although he had been in poor health for more
than a year. He was 79 years of age. The surviving relatives are his
wife, Mrs. Kate Duncan, who is making her home in Butte with her son and
daughter-in-law; his son, Edwin K. of Butte; a sister, Mira, of Quincy,
Ill., a half-brother, Frank Wood; also of Quincy, and another
half-brother Oliver Wood, of
New Orleans, Mo. Other relatives are a daughter-in-law, Mrs. E. K.
Duncan, of Butte, and two granddaughters, Katherine, a senior at the
Montana State college at Bozeman and Jean a senior at the Butte high
Lewis J. Duncan, the first of Butte’s
mayors to succeed himself, was born in St. Louis, Mo., May 4 1857.
The family removed to Illinois and located at Quincy. He received
his education in the public schools of Quincy and at Hanover college,
Indiana, where he took a general course.
On leaving school he entered the railway service as an
accountant, decided to make it a profession and bcame certified public
accountant. Then he took up
the study of law and was admitted to the bar in 1883.
During this period he married Miss Kate Keath, daughter of Uriah
Keath, well-known lawyer and one time collector of internal revenue for
He was always a religious turn of mind and
after two years at the bar gave up his law practice to become a
Unitarian minister. His
first parish was at Sheffield, Ill.
He then moved to Streetor, Ill., where he founded the Church of
Good Will. Shortly
afterwards he received a call from Milwaukee, where he became pastor of
the Milwaukee ethical society.
He was called to Butte to become pastor of
the Unitarian church of this city in 1902.
The illness of a daughter, who finally passed away in Milwaukee,
delayed the coming of his family to this city until 1904.
He continued to follow the clerical profession in this city until
1910, when he was elected mayor. He
served until 1914, when he and Sheriff Driscoll were removed from office
through ouster proceedings growing out of rioting that had resulted in
the dissolution of Butte Miners Union No. 11, W.F.M.
Following his removal from office he worked
in the mines and copper tanks in this district but was too frail
physically to perform this labor and accepted a call to south Dakota,
where he became manager of the Nonpartisan league.
Following the dissolution of the league he removed to
Minneapolis, where he was engaged in newspaper work for two years, after
which he devoted himself to private teaching—English, business, public
speaking, dramatics and music until ill health compelled him to retire
from active work.
The Montana Standard
J. Duncan Dies
Butte, Jan. 28—(AP)—Lewis Johnstone Duncan, mayor of Butte
from 1911 to 1915, died of pneumonia at Rochester, Minn., hospital,
friends here learned. Duncan
was 70 years old, and had been in ill health for some time.
First of Butte’s mayors to succeed himself, Duncan was born in
St. Louis May 4, 1857. His family moved to Illinois and Duncan was
educated at Quincy and at Hanover college, Indiana. He became a railway
service employee after leaving school and later was an accountant. Then
he took up the study of law.
He was married to Miss Kate Keath after he was admitted to the
bar in 1883. He gave up his law practice to become a Unitarian minister
in Illinois and came here to accept a pastorate in 1902.
He remained a clergyman until 1910 when he was elected mayor,
serving until 1914 when he was removed from office with Sheriff Driscoll
through ouster proceedings that grew out of rioting that ultimately
resulted in the dissolution of the Butte miners union.
Following his removal from office, he was employed in mines in
this district but his health was too poor to permit him to perform
manual labor. He then moved to South Dakota and later to Minneapolis
where he engaged in newspaper work for two years.
Later he became a private tutor until his failing health forced
him to give up active work. Survivors include a widow and son, a sister
and a granddaughter Katherine Duncan, a student at Montana State
Funeral services are expected to be in Minneapolis.
29,__(AP)—Funeral services will be held here Monday afternoon for Mrs.
Kate Keath Duncan, widow of Lewis J. Duncan, former Butte mayor.
She died yesterday,
just a month after the death of her husband and two days before her 76th
A son, Edwin K.
Duncan, and two granddaughters, Jean of Butte, and Katherine, a student
at Bozeman, survive.
The body will be
taken to Great Falls for cremation.