Home View All Databases Search Places Store New Site
Help My Account

Montana Timeline

Montana Timeline

1740s French explorers are believed to have explored the Montana region around this time period. Before the white settlers arrived, Montana was the home to many Indian tribes including: the Arapaho, Assiniboine, Blackfeet, Cheyenne, Crow, and Gros Ventre. Some other tribes including the Sioux, Mandan, and Nez Perce hunted in the region.

1803 Eastern Montana became United States territory throught the Louisiana purchase.

1805 Meriwether Lewis and William Clark traveled across Montana during their exploration.

1806 Lewis and Clark returned to Montana and explored parts of the region.

1807 Fur trading became important in the area.

1841 St, Mary's Mission was established by Jesuit Missionaries. It was the first permanent settlement in Montana.

1846 A treaty with Great Britian made the northwestern part of Montana part of the Untied States.

1847 Fort Benton was built by the American Fur Company. The town that was formed there is Montana's oldest continuously populated town.

1862 Gold was discovered in Montana. As a result a number of prospectors rushed to the area.

January 1864 Henry Plummer, an active outlaw in the Montana mining communities, was executed by a vigilance committee. These committees were the first form of government in the area.

26 May 1864 Montana became a territory. Sidney Adgerton became the governor.

1866 Nelson Story drove thousands of longhorn cattle from Texas to Montana. This started the cattle industry in Montana.

25 June 1876 The Cheyenne and Sioux Indians wiped out part of the Cavalry Regiment serving under Lieutenant Colonel George A. Custer during the battle at Little Bighorn.

1877 Chief Joseph led his tribe of Nez Perce Indians through Montana as they were fleeing from United States troops. They were captured 40 miles from the Canadian border.

1883 The Northern Pacific Railroad came to Montana. It opened up the market in the east.

1884 Montana first asked for statehood.

8 November 1889 Montana became the 41st state. Joseph K. Toole became the governor.

1880s-1890s Miners came to Butte from all over Europe and found gold, silver, and copper. Butte Hill became known as "the richest hill on earth."

1910 Glacier National Park was created in Montana.

1916 Jeanette Rankin was elected by Montana to the United States House of Representatives. She was the first woman to serve in Congress.

1939-1945 During World War II Montana's meat and grain were in demand.

1940 Fort Peck Dam was completed. It had provided many jobs during the Great Depression, and when it was finished it provided the much needed water for irrigation.

1951 Oil was discovered in the Williston Basin.

1955 The Anaconda Aluminum Company opened in northwestern Montana. Aluminum soon became important to the state's economy.

1960s The Anaconda company spent $50 million to improve the operations at the Butte mines.

1966 The Yellowtail Dam was completed.

1970s As energy shortages developed throughout the United States, the coal and oil industries expanded rapidly in Montana.

1973 The current state constitution went into effect.

1975 The Libby Dam was completed. It produces 525,000 kilowatts of power.

1980s The production of fuel leveled off as the need dropped.

1985 The Science and Technology Alliance agency was completed. It helped to research and look for new uses for raw materials.

1990s Montana had a gain in the amount of tourists coming to the state.

2000 Judy Martz became the first woman to be elected governor of Montana.

Works Cited
Harry W. Fritz and Katherine Hansen. "Montana." Worldbookonline.com.


I recently signed up for your service and I love it, especially with all the added items. I am referring this website to all my friends who do genealogy! - Linda J.

Thank you so much for this, i've searched and searched for info on my great uncle, and yours is one of the very few sites where he's mentioned. Yours has more detail than any other. - Anita S.

I love your site, esp. the small newspaper collection and the search of external sites such as findagrave.com. - Mary H.


Signup for the World Vital Records weekly newsletter. The newsletter covers:

Genealogy and family history industry news and updates

WorldVitalRecords news and information

Information on new and upcoming databases to be added to the site

Upcoming conferences and events

Get your free weekly genealogy newsletter



Return Policy   Link to this page   Bookmark this page

Copyright © 2006-2007, World Vital Records, Inc.