Martha Rebecca Fehlman


(June 30, 2002)

Martha Rebecca Fehlman died June 30 at the Powell Nursing Home.

She was born Jan. 1, 1905 in a log cabin at Big Piney. She was the oldest of three children of Mae (Bess) and George Whitman. Her father came from Texas in March 1888 traveling across the plains with 25 people and 400 head of horses.

She lived on a homestead at LaBarge until she was 7 and ready for school. Her folks moved to Big Piney. They had no electricity and no running water. They burned coal and had kerosene lamps. Her father brought the first automobile to the area. She graduated from Big Piney High School in 1923.

In 1921 she and her sister Mae had a candy store and ice cream parlor. They later added groceries. This was the beginning of a collection of recipes she used to write two cookbooks. She wrote "Martha's Wyoming Cookbook" in 1977 and a "Wyoming Centennial Edition" in 1990.

She married Byron H. Fehlman Nov. 7, 1925. They lived a short time in Moab, Utah, and Casper before moving to Frannie in 1931, where they lived in the Standard Oil of Indiana camp.

Two children were born; Joan in 1929 and Byron in 1935.

In 1940 they bought a piece of prairie land in Cody and built the Covered Wagon Motel, now known as the Carriage House Motel. She sold the motel in 1972 and moved to Powell where she resided for 30 years.

She was a member of the Cedar Chapter Order of Eastern Star for over 50 years. She liked to china paint, oil paint, sew and play bridge. She raised beautiful roses that many people in Powell enjoyed for years. She belonged to Union Presbyterian Church.

A native of Wyoming, she loved the state and was proud to have spent her life here.

She is survived by her daughter Joan Bartels of Worland; son Byron H. Fehlman and wife Sue of Tucson, Ariz.; sister-in-law Charlene Whitman of Pinedale; grandchildren Mark D. Bartels and wife Elizabeth of Little Rock, Ariz.; Scott J. Bartels and wife Patricia of Las Vegas, Nev.; Krista L. Luhrs and husband John of Ketchican, Alaska; and Clint Bartels and wife Jennifer of Rifle, Colo.; 11 great-grandchildren; nieces and nephews. Her parents, husband in 1964, brother Arnold Whitman and sister Mae Cly and brother-in-law Charles Clyde preceded her in death.

Graveside services will be held at 10 a.m. July 8 at Riverside Cemetery in Cody, with Pastor Tim Trippel officiating.

Miratsky-Easton Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.