• Red cliffs descend into the water of Bighorn Canyon

    Bighorn Canyon

    National Recreation Area MT,WY

Edith Barry

Edith Barry

Edith Barry

NPS

Edith Barry came from an old style Southern aristocratic family. Her lineage included a paternal grandfather who had been the first territorial governor of Mississippi as well as maternal grandparents who had owned a plantation along the Mississippi River in Louisiana.

By the time she met Grosevner W. Barry, Edith had lived in such locales as Mobile, Roanoke, and Pittsburgh. Her first husband had also been a doctor and they had two sons together. The first died when just over a year old, while the second, Claude would stay by her side throughout her life. In 1902 her first husband passed away. The next year she married Doc Barry. Soon she and Claude would joined him in the Trail Creek Valley.

A Daunting Figure
Edith was known by family and friends who spent time at the Cedarvale Dude Ranch as a daunting figure. She could be quite domineering when challenged. Caroline Lockhart – a difficult personality herself – referenced Edith in one of her books as “Old Satan.” On the other hand, in line with her Southern aristocratic roots, Edith was known for her magnificent cooking and genteel tastes.

The house was outfitted with antiques and luxury goods. The table at dinnertime was set immaculately with silver utensils. In many ways Edith was the perfect figure to host the “dudes” who came to Cedarvale from a refined culture back East. The success of Cedarvale probably had as much to do with Edith’s style as it did Doc Barry’s marketing skills.

Cedarvale After Doc
In 1920 Doc Barry died of a cerebral hemorrhage. Following his death, Edith’s son Claude took over the ranch. Edith assisted her son throughout the 1920’s as Cedarvale continued to host dudes. By the 1930’s the clientele had faded away, close friends now were the main visitors to the ranch. Edith would outlast Doc by 31 years. She finally passed away in 1951 at Hillsboro of old age. In the remote Trail Creek Valley she had found her final home.

Did You Know?

Young bighorn ram, photo by T. Ennis

The bighorn sheep disappeared from the area in the 1800s. In the 1970s, Montana and Wyoming state game agencies translocated sheep into nearby areas. Descendants of these sheep moved into the range along Bighorn Canyon and today the estimated population is 150 to 200. More...