“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)


Bannack Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, May 12, 2018
1. Bannack Marker
Inscription. Montana's first gold rush began near here at Grasshopper Creek in the summer of 1862. Prospectors John White and company camped along the insect infested banks as they looked for a shortcut to the Deer Lodge valley. They panned the gravel - as was their habit - and found color, touching off Montana's first gold rush. Miners swarmed to the new placers and a rip-roaring new settlement called Bannack quickly sprang up. The Civil War divided the town into Jeff Davis Gulch and Yankee Flats. By fall its population was 500, eventually rising to 5,000. Upon creation of Montana Territory in 1864, Governor Sidney Edgerton designated Bannack the temporary capital and called the first legislature there in December. But gold discoveries at Alder Gulch stole Bannack's fickle residents and the territorial capital moved to Virginia City. Bannack was the scene of several vigilante hangings in 1864, including that of its infamous sheriff, Henry Plummer. It was the Beaverhead County seat until 1881 when few people remained. Those who did mined for gold with different methods until 1954 when the state of Montana acquired most of the town. It became a state park, earning status as a National Historic Landmark in 1961.
Erected by Montana Department of Transportation.
Bannack Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, May 12, 2018
2. Bannack Marker
Marker on the left
45° 7.536′ N, 112° 44.826′ W. Marker is near Dillon, Montana, in Beaverhead County. Marker is on Interstate 15 at milepost 55 near Rebich Lane, on the right when traveling south. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Dillon MT 59725, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 11 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Old Trail to the Gold Diggin's (a few steps from this marker); Clark Pocket Compass Monument (approx. 9.4 miles away); William Clark (approx. 9.4 miles away); Reliable Landmarks (approx. 9.4 miles away); Mapping the Way (approx. 9.4 miles away); Distant Features (approx. 9.4 miles away); Sacajawea (approx. 10.3 miles away); The Lewis and Clark Expedition (approx. 11.1 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Dillon.
More about this marker. This marker is located at a roadside pullout on Southbound Interstate 25, south of the Rebich Lane exit.
Additional keywords. gold rush
Categories. Settlements & Settlers
Bannack circa 1900 image. Click for full size.
Montana Historical Society
3. Bannack circa 1900
Credits. This page was last revised on November 1, 2018. This page originally submitted on October 6, 2018, by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California. This page has been viewed 71 times since then and 16 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on October 6, 2018, by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California.
Paid Advertisement We are suspending advertising until they remove an ad for a certain book from circulation. A word in the book’s title has given rise to number of complaints. The word is inappropriate in school classroom settings.