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

Ravalli County Montana Historical Markers

 
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By Barry Swackhamer, May 11, 2018
Historical Events panel
Montana (Ravalli County), Darby — Trapper Peak
(Two panels make up this marker.) At 10,157 feet in elevation, magnificent Trapper Peak rises higher than any other peak in the 200 mile-long Bitterroot Mountain Range that extends along the Idaho-Montana border from the Snake River . . . — Map (db m123595) HM
Montana (Ravalli County), Hamilton — 337 West Main
With material and manpower redirected to winning the fight against fascism, commercial and domestic construction practically ceased during World War II. After the war, pent up demand led to a mini construction boom. With very few lots left on the . . . — Map (db m123588) HM
Montana (Ravalli County), Hamilton — Carnegie Library
Hamilton’s Ministerial Association opened the first free library in Ravalli County in April 1903 in a room donated by the Ravalli County Bank. Three months later, Hamilton voters levied a one mill tax to support the library, and the enterprise . . . — Map (db m123589) HM
Montana (Ravalli County), Hamilton — City Hall
Town halls originated in twelfth-century Italy, where bells were rung to call public assemblies. Missoula architect A. J. Gibson’s city hall design references this history. Allusions to Italy include such Italian Renaissance features as a . . . — Map (db m123555) HM
Montana (Ravalli County), Hamilton — Daly Mansion
Riverside served as the summer residence of Margaret Daly, widow of copper magnate Marcus Daly, from its completion in 1910 until her death here in 1941. Daly himself had begun buying Bitterroot Valley land in 1887, eventually owning 28,000 acres. . . . — Map (db m123551) HM
Montana (Ravalli County), Hamilton — First National Bank
“No year has favored the business section like 1910. And best of all, the buildings are of a better class than last year,” enthused the Ravalli Republic. Part of this boom, the First National Bank building replaced two wooden . . . — Map (db m123590) HM
Montana (Ravalli County), Hamilton — Hamilton Commercial Historic District
Hamilton was born of the Anaconda Company’s voracious appetite for lumber, nurtured on the Bitterroot apple boom, and sustained by medical research. Copper King Marcus Daly—whose Big Mill cut millions of board feet annually to feed his mines . . . — Map (db m123553) HM
Montana (Ravalli County), Hamilton — Telephone Exchange
State officials turned out on January 21, 1937, for the grand opening of Hamilton’s new telephone system. The event marked the modernization of telecommunications in the Bitterroot Valley. Ivan C. Gustafson owned this property and built the . . . — Map (db m123554) HM
Montana (Ravalli County), Hamilton — United States Post Office
When construction began on Hamilton’s post office in August 1940, the worst of the Depression was over. Nevertheless, the building is a legacy of the New Deal, when the number of federal construction projects soared to put people to work. Montana . . . — Map (db m123552) HM
Montana (Ravalli County), Stevensville — "Removal" of Salish from Bitterroot Valley, 1855-1891
In the Hellgate Treaty negotiations (1855), Xwetxxcln (Plenty Horses or chief Victor) and the Selíš people rebuffed efforts of US officials to get them to abandon the choice lands of their ancestral Bitterroot Valley. After Xwetxxcln died, settlers . . . — Map (db m123513) HM
Montana (Ravalli County), Stevensville — An Ancient Cultural LandscapeSalish-Pend d'Oreille Place names in the Bitterroot Valley
From time immemorial, the Bitterroot Valley has been a central part of the aboriginal territory of the Salish people. Although the tribe is now based on the Flathead Indian Reservation north of Missoula, the Bitterroot remains a place of great . . . — Map (db m123550) HM
Montana (Ravalli County), Stevensville — Calvin and Magdalene Cook House
Calvin and Magdalene Cook came to Montana from Kansas in 1880 and settled near Stevensville. Like many early settlers, the Cooks’ intent was to farm. After more than a decade of farming, however, business opportunities in Stevensville beckoned and . . . — Map (db m123449) HM
Montana (Ravalli County), Stevensville — Denayer House
The DeNayer House is a fine example of transitional Queen Anne/Colonial Revival style architecture. The combination hipped and gabled roof and irregular floorplan are characteristic of the Queen Anne style while corner pilasters and clapboard siding . . . — Map (db m123509) HM
Montana (Ravalli County), Stevensville — First Baptist Church
The Stevensville Baptist congregation first organized as the Etna Baptist Church of Christ at the nearby Etna schoolhouse in 1882. In 1884, the growing membership purchased land in Stevensville and hired talented Missoula architect Thomas W. . . . — Map (db m123451) HM
Montana (Ravalli County), Stevensville — First State Bank Building300 Main Street — 1909
The First State Bank Building was built on the site of the first Ravalli County Courthouse. It is a well-preserved example of the classical-revival commercial style of early 20th century architecture. The First State Bank significantly . . . — Map (db m123444) HM
Montana (Ravalli County), Stevensville — Fort Owen State Monument
Fort Owen’s log and adobe walls witnessed dramatic changes as the Bitterroot Valley emerged from remote wilderness to settled agricultural community. The Jesuit fathers who had established St. Mary’s Mission nearby in 1841 closed their doors in . . . — Map (db m123510) HM
Montana (Ravalli County), Stevensville — Gleason Building202 Main Street — 1910
When the Gleason Building was built on the southeast corner of Main and 2nd Street, a furniture store was an opportune investment. The Gleason Furniture Company occupied the first floor of this building. Later in the 1920s, the upper floor . . . — Map (db m123387) HM
Montana (Ravalli County), Stevensville — Henry Buck/Stevensville Trading Co229 Main Street — 1906
The Henry Buck/Stevensville Trading Co. was constructed in response to the rapid influx of people putting down roots in the Bitterroot Valley during the homestead and apple boom eras. Large general merchandise stores were in great demand at this . . . — Map (db m123441) HM
Montana (Ravalli County), Stevensville — Hunter Building116 Main Street — 1888
The is one of the first and oldest brick buildings in town. In 1893 the Hunter Building was used as a saloon. Due to the Temperance movement in the early 1900s the saloon's license was revoked. After this time it went through a series of . . . — Map (db m123386) HM
Montana (Ravalli County), Stevensville — IOOF Hall217 Main Street — 1912
The Independent Order of Odd Fellows building was built during the period of optimism and growth in Stevensville. The IOOF Hall played a significant humanitarian and social roll in the community. The upper level was used for their lodge . . . — Map (db m123390) HM
Montana (Ravalli County), Stevensville — Porter & Buck Building317 Main Street — 1910
The Porter & Buck Building thrived as a grocery store until 1922. Porter and Buck Brothers served the growing population settling in the Bitterroot Valley. Beautiful glass tiles accent the transom and give it an artistic flair. The tiles . . . — Map (db m123446) HM
Montana (Ravalli County), Stevensville — Saint Mary's Mission
Established in 1841 by Pierre DeSmet, S.J., in response to requests for Black Robes by four separate delegations sent by Flathead and Nez Perce tribes to St. Louis. Fr. DeSmet and his party erected Montana's first church immediately west on the bank . . . — Map (db m123521) HM
Montana (Ravalli County), Stevensville — St. Mary's Mission Historic District
Jesuit priests and lay brothers founded St. Mary’s Mission—the first mission in the Northwest—near this site in 1841. The Jesuits closed the mission in 1850, returning in 1866. For the next quarter century, they helped the Salish adapt . . . — Map (db m123447) HM
Montana (Ravalli County), Stevensville — Thorton Building221 Main Street — 1908
The Thorton Building is associated with Dr. W.T, Thorton, a well-known physician in western Montana who started the Thorton Hospital on Main and 3rd Street. This fireproof structure was originally built as a doctor's office Since then it has . . . — Map (db m123389) HM
Montana (Ravalli County), Stevensville — Welcome to Fort Owen
In 1850, Major John Owen established this trading post on the original site of St. Mary's Mission. It was the first permanent white settlement in Montana, and welcomed Indian, trappers, gold seekers and settlers. By the late 1860s, major travel . . . — Map (db m123519) HM
Montana (Ravalli County), Sula — First ImpressionsFriend or Foe?
Not a War Party On September 4th, 1805, T chliska-e-mee (Three Eagles) the father of Chief Victor and grandfather of Chief Charlo, left camp to scout the area, fearing there might be some Indian enemies around intending to steal horses, . . . — Map (db m123624) HM
Montana (Ravalli County), Sula — Join the Voyage of DiscoveryLewis and Clark in Montana
Wherever you are in Montana, you stand in the pathway of Lewis and Clark. Their 1804-1806 expedition was a grand adventure: to investigate the people and resources of the newly acquired Louisiana Purchase and to seek a navigable passage across the . . . — Map (db m123630) HM
Montana (Ravalli County), Sula — Lewis and Clark at Ross' Hole
(Three panels, presented left to right, make up this marker) While here at Ross' Hole, (Sula, Montana) on September 4th, 1805, William Clark wrote in his journal: "Those people recved us friendly, threw white robes over our sholders & . . . — Map (db m123599) HM
Montana (Ravalli County), Sula — Mountains on the MoveThe Bitterroot and Sapphire Mountains
The spectacular Bitterroot Mountains northwest of Sula expose granite rocks of the Idaho batholith, a major geologic feature that consists of a series of igneous intrusions that pushed their way toward the surface between about 80 and 53 million . . . — Map (db m123620) HM
Montana (Ravalli County), Sula — Ross' Hole
Alexander Ross, of the Hudson Bay Company, with 55 Indian and white trappers, 89 women and children and 392 horses, camped near here on March 12, 1824, enroute from Spokane House near present Spokane, Washington to the Snake River country in . . . — Map (db m123597) HM
Montana (Ravalli County), Sula — SurvivalObtaining Vital Food, Supplies and Information
A Customary and Proper Welcome The Salish people gave the strangers many gifts during their brief encounter here at the Great Clearing. They gave their guests roots, berries, animal furs, and vital information about the trails and . . . — Map (db m123625) HM
Montana (Ravalli County), Sula — The Great Clearing
“Our people were camped in a kind of prairie along the Bitterroot River, a few miles upstream from the Medicine Tree. The place is called Ross’ Hole now; the Indians then called it Kwtít Pupxm.” --Pierre Pichette, Salish Tribal Elder . . . — Map (db m123622) HM
Montana (Ravalli County), Sula — Which Way Did Lewis & Clark Go?Rugged Mountain Crossing
This marker is composed of three panels on a common support The Mystery May Never be Solved Experts disagree on the exact route Lewis and Clark took over this divide. No one knows where they camped on that cold snowy night . . . — Map (db m109625) HM

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