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Montenegrin graveyards in Montana

At the beginning of the last century many émigrés from all parts of Montenegro  and neighboring areas headed in great numbers towards the USA, and settled in the "promised land" in search of a better life. The largest number of migrants worked in the mines of Montana, Pennsylvania, Wyoming, California, Nevada, Colorado, etc. The largest colonies of émigrés from Montenegro were in Montana. One such colony, which like the majority of them was in the close vicinity of the mines, was located in Bear Creek not far from Rad Lodge. The local mining company in the era of its greatest prosperity employed a large number of our people mainly from the Niksic and Krivosija areas, the areas around Mount Lovcen and from Herzegovina. Many of these settlements, like Bear Creek, were abandoned as soon as the ore reserves were exhausted so that the main evidence of the presence of Montenegrin émigrés in these far regions today are the solitary gravestones and inscriptions on them. They speak of the unbelievably tough life in this inaccessible region of the New World in the age of immigration, of homesickness, loneliness... The life span of the miners was very short. Many perished at work, others died of tuberculosis or the infamous mining disease silicosis, while the mortality rate amongst children born in the temporary mining settlements was even greater. Amongst the second generation Montenegrin immigrants who were born in these settlements was the recently deceased well-known American publisher William Jovanovich, owner of the publishing house Brace Jovanovich. Second generation immigrants cut their thorny path to success in a country far from their native home, about which they rarely even had time to daydream about. In their later years those who were not afraid of the Communist system, which had taken over the land of their fathers, headed back to Montenegro. Many were amazed by that small country which they knew only from stories and lullabies from their earliest childhood. We recommend this link: In 1988 Bill and Corky Knebel collected the data you can find on the site which shows pictures of the miners' graves at Bear Creek; The pictures were collected for a book by Margaret Reed Reynolds, Carbon County-Montana Cemetery Records, which was published in over 200 pages in memory of the Montenegrins and all the other pioneers who never returned home. Gordan Stojovic
Montenegro.com