Fort Benton, Montana

You will find that the History of the West is a rich theme in Fort Benton. Known as the "Birthplace of Montana", Fort Benton is situated on the banks of the Missouri River, and is a haven for history buffs as well as canoeists seeking the solitude and unique beauty of the Upper Missouri National Wild and Scenic River. Fort Benton is also located along the Lewis & Clark National Historic trail, the Nez Perce National Historic Trail, and is the gateway to the Upper Missouri River Breaks National Monument. Fort Benton first gained fame as a robe trading post. The discovery of gold in the Montana and Idaho Territories brought countless fortune seekers, outlaws, merchants and madams to this riverside town. Whiskey followed gold, and infamous trails were forged into Canada, including the Whoop-up Trail into Alberta and the Fort Walsh Trail into Saskatchewan. As the terminus for the 642-mile long Mullan Wagon Road, Fort Benton became a crucial link between Missouri and Walla Walla, Washington along the Columbia River. Steamboats plied the Missouri River to Fort Benton for thirty years, until the railroad signaled an end to this towns’ prominence as the “Worlds Innermost Port”. This once feisty outpost played such a vital role in the expansion of the West, that it is now registered as a National Historic Landmark. (www.fortbenton.com)

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Location

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Nearby
Latitude: 47.817012 Longitude: -110.667871 Elevation: 2634 ft
the best travel advice comes from the people who live here
Stacy Bronec

Time Period Represented

1846 - present

Seasons Open

Annual

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