“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Dillon in Beaverhead County, Montana — The American West (Mountains)

A Tribute to Sidney Edgerton

Montana's Unsung Hero

A Tribute to Sidney Edgerton Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Barry Swackhamer, May 12, 2018
1. A Tribute to Sidney Edgerton Marker
Inscription.  Sidney Edgerton arrived at Bannack from Ohio in September 1863 to begin his appointment as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Idaho Territory. The massive territory encompassed Idaho, all of Montana, and the western half of Wyoming, with the capital at Lewiston, Idaho. Edgerton became convinced that the region's gold discoveries created the need for government closer at hand. Carrying two thousand dollars' worth of gold dust sewn into his clothing, he undertook the treacherous journey to Washington, D.C., where Congress was considering creating a new territory. Edgerton advocated that Montana's western boundary fall along the Bitterroot Mountains, rather than on the proposed Continental Divide. Thus, it was Edgerton who won the Bitterroot and Flathead Valleys and the future wealth of Butte for Montana. After Congress created Montana Territory on May 26, 1864, President Abraham Lincoln appointed Edgerton its first governor. However, Lincoln failed to appoint a territorial secretary, the only official authorized to spend federal money. Edgerton kept the territory afloat with is own personal funds. On February 2, 1865, the territorial legislature
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established Edgerton County as one of Montana's original nine counties. The county name did not last long. Edgerton was a strong, outspoken Republican abolitionist, whose belief is equal rights was unpopular with the territory's Democratic majority. Edgerton resigned as territorial governor, departing for Akron, Ohio, in September 1865 where he practiced law util his death in 1900. In December 1867 the territorial legislature voted 7-0 to change the name of Edgerton County to Lewis and Clark County. Bitter partisan politics denied Edgerton the recognition he deserved as the "Father of Montana."
Erected 2015 by Montana National Register Sign Program.
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Settlements & Settlers. In addition, it is included in the Montana National Register Sign Program series list. A significant historical date for this entry is May 26, 1864.
Location. 45° 9.744′ N, 112° 59.928′ W. Marker is near Dillon, Montana, in Beaverhead County. Marker is on Bannack Road near State Highway 278, on the left when traveling east. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 4200 Bannack Road, Dillon MT 59725, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 14 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Bannack (here, next to this marker); Bannack Historical District (here, next to this marker); a different marker
A Tribute to Sidney Edgerton Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Barry Swackhamer, May 12, 2018
2. A Tribute to Sidney Edgerton Marker
Right of center below the log cabin
also named Bannack (within shouting distance of this marker); Nez Perce Camp (about 800 feet away, measured in a direct line); Grasshopper Creek (approx. half a mile away); The First Electric Gold Dredge (approx. half a mile away); The Way It Used To Be... Way Back (approx. 10.2 miles away); Sacajawea (approx. 13.3 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Dillon.
More about this marker. This marker is located near the picnic tables at the entrance to the exhibit buildings in Bannack State Park.
Also see . . .  Sidney Ederton - Wikipedia. Sidney Edgerton (August 17, 1818 – July 19, 1900) was an American politician, lawyer, judge and teacher from Ohio. He served during the American Civil War ... as colonel in the Ohio Militia. Edgerton was one of the Squirrel Hunters, expert shots from Ohio. ... During this time, Edgerton served as a U.S. Congressman. In 1863, Abraham Lincoln appointed him the first Chief justice of the Idaho Territorial Court. Edgerton lobbied for the creation of separate territories, out of the Idaho
Sidney Edgerton image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Wikipedia
3. Sidney Edgerton
Territory, and in 1864, Abraham Lincoln appointed Edgerton as the first Territorial Governor of Montana. During his term as Territorial Governor, he was an alleged member of the infamous Montana Vigilantes, and was reputedly among its founders.
(Submitted on October 5, 2018, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California.) 
Credits. This page was last revised on December 24, 2019. It was originally submitted on October 5, 2018, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California. This page has been viewed 413 times since then and 21 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on October 5, 2018, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California.

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Feb. 21, 2024