The Chronicles Of Grant County

Montana Street

lake mcdonald glacier national park david mark pixabay november 20 2015 50Lake McDonald is the largest lake within the Glacier National Park in Montana. According to the National Park Service, this lake is ten miles long and nearly 500 feet deep. (The photograph was provided courtesy of David Mark through Pixabay, November 20, 2015.)

Lake McDonald is the largest lake within the Glacier National Park in Montana. According to the National Park Service, this lake is ten miles long and nearly 500 feet deep. (The photograph was provided courtesy of David Mark through Pixabay, November 20, 2015.)

Montana Street in Silver City gets its name from the State of Montana. In the Spanish language, "montaña" means "mountain." Much of western Montana is in the Rocky Mountain range. Please note that a roadway with a similar name, La Montana Drive, located to the southwest of the Town of Silver City, is named after a mountain in the area rather than the State of Montana.

The Glacier National Park is located within the borders of Montana. "Numerous Native American tribes utilized the area around and within what is now the park for hunting, fishing, ceremonies, and gathering plants," according to a statement from the National Park Service. "When the first [European]…explorers began arriving in the region, the Blackfeet controlled the prairies on the east side of Glacier [National Park], while the Salish, Pend d'Oreille, and Kootnei lived in the more forested west side."

Like a number of western states, including New Mexico, portions of Montana are governed by Native American nations. "The original 1855 Blackfeet Indian Reservation encompassed most of the northern half of the state of Montana," according to a statement from the Blackfeet Nation. "The present reservation is located in northwest Montana, bordered by Glacier National Park to the west and Canada to the north. Spanning 1.5 million acres, the Blackfeet reservation is one of the largest in the United States."

Prior to statehood, Montana was part of several different territories established by the Federal government. Hard to believe today, but the bulk of Montana used to be part of the Louisiana Territory and the Missouri Territory. At different times, parts of the state were also included in the Oregon Territory, the Washington Territory, the Nebraska Territory, and the Dakota Territory. In 1863, the lands now part of much of Montana, all of Idaho, and the bulk of Wyoming were consolidated together as Idaho Territory. Initially, this new territory was to be called "Montana Territory." Instead, "Idaho" was chosen as the new territory's name. The year later, the Montana Territory was created out of Idaho Territory. In 1873, a small spit of land where the border of Montana met the boundaries of Idaho and Wyoming – officially part of Dakota Territory – became part of Montana. The boundaries of Montana Territory became the borders of the State of Montana when it was admitted to the Union in 1889.

Montana has two nicknames, one official nickname and one likely more common nickname. Officially, Montana is the "Treasure State." That name originated from the various minerals – treasure – mined in the state. A more common nickname associated with Montana may be "Big Sky Country."

According to the Montana Department of Commerce, "In 1962, the State Highway Department was having a promotion and needed a name. One of the men working there had read a book called The Big Sky, written by a Montanan author, A. B. Guthrie, Jr. This book was about trapping and the outdoors. Mr. Guthrie gave the State Highway Department permission to use the name, and Montana has been 'Big Sky Country' ever since."

grizzly bear bozeman montana sage scott pixabay june 29 2017 50The grizzly bear is the state animal on Montana. This grizzly bear was seen near Bozeman, Montana. (The photograph was provided courtesy of Sage Scott through Pixabay, June 29, 2017.)

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