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

The Mullan Road

The Mullan Road Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Duane Hall, August 8, 2010
1. The Mullan Road Marker
Inscription.  From this point west to the Idaho line, US Highway 12 and I-90 follows the route of a military road located and constructed in Montana between 1859 - 62 by Captain John Mullan. The road was 624 miles long and connected Fort Benton, Montana, with Fort Walla Walla, Washington. Originally an Indian trail, Mullan mapped the road over the pass in the 1850s. In 1860, it was incorporated into the military road that would bear his name.

The Captain aside from his engineering ability, was a man of considerable insight as evidenced by the following excerpt from his final report. He prophesied “... the locomotive engine will make passage of the ... wild interior at rates of speed which will startle human credulity.” Indeed, two decades later, in 1883, the Northern Pacific Railway constructed its main line over Mullan Pass.

Mullan himself might have been incredulous had he seen the freight train that crossed this divide in 1865. Seven camels, each laden with 600 pounds of flour, made the trek from Helena to the Deer Lodge area mines. One of the less successful experiments in American transportation history, the dromedary
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carried tremendous loads, was sure footed, had great stamina, but the horses, mules and oxen of the teamsters and mule packers stampeded at the sight and smell of them. The camels were gone from Montana by 1867.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Roads & Vehicles. A significant historical year for this entry is 1859.
Location. 46° 33.61′ N, 112° 23.158′ W. Marker is near Elliston, Montana, in Powell County. Marker is on U.S. 12, 0.2 miles west of Lime Quarryhills Lane, on the right when traveling west. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Elliston MT 59728, 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. The Frenchwoman's Road (approx. 3.7 miles away); Over a Billion Years of Montana's Geological History (approx. 5.1 miles away); Marysville General Store (approx. 13.6 miles away); Marysville, Montana (approx. 13.6 miles away); A Booming Little Place (approx. 13.6 miles away); Marysville Shaffer House (approx. 13.7 miles away); Marysville School House (approx. 13.7 miles away); Methodist Episcopal Church of Marysville (approx. 13.8 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Elliston.
More about this marker. There is an identical marker on the opposite side of the highway for eastbound traffic.
The Mullan Road Marker (<i>wide view</i>) image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Cosmos Mariner, July 10, 2013
2. The Mullan Road Marker (wide view)
The Mullan Road Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Google Street View (©2014 Google), June 2012
3. The Mullan Road Marker
View to west along US 12
Credits. This page was last revised on December 24, 2018. It was originally submitted on February 23, 2014, by Duane Hall of Abilene, Texas. This page has been viewed 754 times since then and 156 times this year. Photos:   1. submitted on February 23, 2014, by Duane Hall of Abilene, Texas.   2. submitted on December 23, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.   3. submitted on February 23, 2014, by Duane Hall of Abilene, Texas.
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Sep. 25, 2023