The Montana Castle Built for a Horse
There is rich, and then there is "I'll build my racehorse a castle if I win this bet," kind of rich. That's exactly what happened in the late 1800's when one of Montana's wealthiest men placed a bet with his horse racing pal back on the East Coast. The story involves Copper Baron Marcus Daly and his favorite horse, Tammany. There are many accounts of the event, with this story in the Ravalli Republic quoting Daly saying before the 1893 race,
If Tammany beats Lamplighter, I’ll build him a castle.
Of course, Daly could afford it. His role as a partner, investor and innovator in expanding the copper empire in Butte and the surrounding area is legendary, and it made him extremely wealthy. It's truly an American success story (that you should remember from high school Montana history), as Irish-born Daly was basically broke when he landed in the United States at 15-years-old.
Wealthy folks have done some bizarre stuff for their beloved animals, like leaving a $3M inheritance to their chihuahua but building a really, really nice horse barn is not exactly that outlandish of a gesture. The Horse Castle near Hamilton, MT was converted to a home in 2007 according to a Zillow posting for the property (which is not currently for sale). The former horse barn is pretty spectacular.
The 5,500+ sq. foot dwelling features 4 beds/4 baths and sits on nearly 12 acres in the Bitterroot Valley, also knowns simply as "paradise" Montana. The description of the property states,
Custom details were not spared in preserving the original structure and its materials such as the original cork flooring and stable doors.
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