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Missoula in Missoula County, Montana — The American West (Mountains)
 

Fort Missoula

 
 
Fort Missoula Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Barry Swackhamer, May 10, 2018
1. Fort Missoula Marker
Inscription.  Fort Missoula, established in 1877 to provide military control over western Montana’s Indian tribes and protect local settlers, was the only permanent military post west of the Continental Divide. There was little conflict, but the fort’s non-combative service was long and diverse. From 1888 to 1898, the black 25th Infantry Regiment was stationed at the fort. Twenty of the men explored potential military applications of the bicycle, riding 1,900 miles from Missoula to St. Louis in forty days. During the Spanish-American conflict in 1898, volunteers known as Grigsby’s Cowboys were garrisoned at the fort. Citizens protesting its closure in 1904 prompted U.S. Senator Joseph Dixon of Missoula to successfully lobby for the fort’s reconstruction. Eighteen Mission style buildings from this period (1904 to 1912) form the core of the present complex. The fort served as a technical training center during World War I, and between 1933 and 1941, it became the nation’s largest regional headquarters for the Civilian Conservation Corps. During World War II, it was the nation’s largest civilian detention camp interning Japanese Americans, Italian nationals
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taken from merchant and luxury ships in New York’s harbor, and World’s Fair employees. Italian internees affectionately dubbed the fort “Bella Vista.” After World War II, the fort served as a medium security army prison. Closed in 1948, the fort had a military service that long outlasted other early Montana forts. The army began to sell and lease portions of the property, but adaptability and strong community involvement has assured the buildings at Fort Missoula an active future. Most of the district’s buildings are now administered by the Northern Rockies Heritage Center.
 
Erected by Montana Historical Society.
 
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Forts and Castles. In addition, it is included in the Montana National Register Sign Program series list.
 
Location. 46° 50.544′ N, 114° 3.366′ W. Marker is in Missoula, Montana, in Missoula County. Marker can be reached from the intersection of Fort Missoula Road and F Street (Capt. Shattuck Lane), on the right when traveling west. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Missoula MT 59804, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Fort Missoula, Montana (a few steps from this marker); Company Officers' Quarters (within shouting distance of this marker); Veuve Hall
Fort Missoula Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Barry Swackhamer, May 10, 2018
2. Fort Missoula Marker
(within shouting distance of this marker); Fort Missoula Officer's Row (within shouting distance of this marker); Missoula's First Flight (within shouting distance of this marker); Commanding Officer's Quarters (within shouting distance of this marker); Post Commander's Residence (within shouting distance of this marker); Fort Missoula 1910 Era Barrack Buildings (about 500 feet away, measured in a direct line). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Missoula.
 
Also see . . .  Fort Missoula Alien Detention Center - Historical Museum at Fort Missoula. Fort Missoula is currently the largest intact WWII internment site with most major buildings of the era still in use, including the Post Headquarters with its courtroom, the hospital, commissary, officer and staff housing, barracks and other support structures. (Submitted on September 15, 2018, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California.) 
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on September 15, 2018. It was originally submitted on September 14, 2018, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California. This page has been viewed 178 times since then and 11 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on September 14, 2018, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California.

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Apr. 17, 2024