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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”

Fort Benton in Chouteau County, Montana — The American West (Mountains)
 

Upriver Businesses

 
 
Upriver Businesses Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, August 22, 2020
1. Upriver Businesses Marker
Inscription.  Back from the levee that was cluttered with their freight and warehouses stood the uptown merchant's establishments. Carroll and Steell founded the first mercantile in 1864. Murphy, Neil and Co., Kleinschmidt Bros. and W.S. Wetzel built here as well as the Overland Hotel and Wells Fargo Stage Office. I.G. Baker and T.C. Power set up businesses and built the Chouteau House down river near the fort. A keen rivalry began between the two business districts along Front Street. Saloons, dance halls and brothels soon filled the intervening blocks.
Location of the bridge was a compromise between the two districts. Both uptown and downtown merchants owned large-scale freighting outfits and literally sold everything. Some even owned steamboat lines. From 1864 to 1890 they competed heavily for the flourishing trade throughout Montana and Canada, and contributed the lion's share to the growth of the Northwest.
 
Erected by Fort Benton Chamber of Commerce.
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Industry & Commerce.
 
Location. 47° 
Upriver Businesses Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, August 22, 2020
2. Upriver Businesses Marker
Captions: (top left) Mud Wagons; (bottom left) Front Street, 1969; (top right) Murphy, Neil & Company, 1875; (bottom left) John T. Murphy.
48.901′ N, 110° 40.125′ W. Marker is in Fort Benton, Montana, in Chouteau County. Marker is on River Street near 12th Street, on the right when traveling north. The marker is located on the river front pathway between Missouri Breaks Interpretive Center and the historic downtown business district. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Fort Benton MT 59442, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Stage Lines (a few steps from this marker); Davidson and Moffitt Harness Shop (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Old Fort Campbell (about 500 feet away); Bank of Northern Montana (about 500 feet away); Grand Union Hotel (about 500 feet away); Stockmen's National Bank (about 500 feet away); a different marker also named Grand Union Hotel (about 600 feet away); Fort Benton Levee (about 600 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Fort Benton.
 
Upriver Businesses Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, August 22, 2020
3. Upriver Businesses Marker
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on December 4, 2020. It was originally submitted on December 4, 2020, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California. This page has been viewed 22 times since then and 2 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on December 4, 2020, by Barry Swackhamer of Brentwood, California.
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Mar. 4, 2021