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 Interesting Facts About Montana 

  • Montana proudly hosts two National Parks: 
    • Yellowstone National Park, located in southern Montana and northern Wyoming, was the first national park established in the United States in 1872.  
    • Glacier National Park, located in northwestern Montana, along the Canadian border, was established in 1910 as America’s 10th national park. 
  • The world’s first International Peace Park was established in 1932 when Glacier National Park in Montana and Waterton Lakes National Park in Alberta, Canada, were combined. In 1995, UNESCO listed the two parks as a joint World Heritage Site for their diverse and plentiful plant and wildlife species, and outstanding scenery. 
  • Carved by glaciers more than 10,000 years ago, Flathead Lake is the largest freshwater lake between the Mississippi River and the Pacific Ocean. It is 28 miles long, between 5 and 15 miles wide and encompasses almost 200 square miles. 
  • The National Bison Range was established in 1908 in western Montana to preserve wild bison from extinction. In addition to elk, deer, antelope, bears and other animals, roughly 500 bison live in the wildlife refuge. 
  • The coldest temperature in the 48 contiguous states ever recorded was -70 degrees Fahrenheit in Rogers Pass on January 20, 1954. In January of 1972, Loma, Montana, broke the national record for the greatest temperature change within a 24-hour period by recording a 103-degree climb from -54 degrees Fahrenheit to 49 degrees Fahrenheit. 
  • In 2000, 50 of Montana’s 56 counties were designated “frontier counties” by the National Center for Frontier Communities using a matrix that measures population density as well as distance and travel time to a service/market center.  
  • In 2010, Montana was home to an average of 6.8 people per square mile. 
  • Eleven tribal nations live on seven Indian reservations in Montana. A twelfth tribe, the Little Shell Band of Chippewa, lives within the state without its own land. 
  • Montana’s large gold and silver mines gave rise to its nickname, the Treasure State, and its state motto, “Oro y Plata” (Spanish for “Gold and Silver”). 
  • Most of Montana was acquired by the US during the Louisiana Purchase of 1803. 
  • Fort Benton on the Missouri River was built in 1847 by Major Alexander Culbertson of the American Fur Company for Blackfeet trade. It has the reputation of being the most important of all the fur-trade forts. Purchased by the government in 1869 and became a military fort. It is the oldest continuously populated town in the state.  
  • Thousands of people relocated near Grasshopper Creek in Southwest MT, following the discovery of gold in 1862. 
  • The famous battle, “Custer's Last Stand”, took place in 1876 along the Little Bighorn River after the US Army came to move the Native American Sioux tribe to reservations.  
  • Montana has approximately 100 different species of mammals-- more species than any other state in the US. 
  • Montana is the largest landlocked state in the U.S. It borders four states, including Idaho, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wyoming. 
  • Montana is the only US state to share borders with three Canadian providences: Saskatchewan, Alberta and British Columbia 
  • Montana has more than double the number of cows than it does humans. 
  • Montana has the largest grizzly bear population in the lower 48 states. 
  • Montana boasts the largest herd of migratory elk in the nation. 
  • Montana was the first state to elect a woman to Congress. Jeannette Rankin was elected in 1916 and then again in 1940, and was the only member of Congress to vote against U.S. participation in both world wars. 
  • Montana has more bookstores per capita than any other state.  
  • Famous people from Montana, including daredevil stuntman Evel Knievel, actor Gary Cooper, Pearl Jam's Jeff Ament, comedian Dana Carvey and actor Jesse Tyler Ferguson from "Modern Family." 
  • Montana holds the world record for the greatest temperature change in 24 hours. In 1972 in the city of Loma, the temperature went from minus 54 degrees Fahrenheit to 49 degrees F: a 103-degree change.  
  • Montana is the only state with river systems that empty into the Hudson Bay, Pacific Ocean, and the Gulf of Mexico.  
October 07, 2021 — Captains & Cowboys