Lewistown cits in the center of Montana and was settled because of its prime location on the Carroll Trail (the shortest route between Helena and the Missouri River).
Lewistown’s architecture looks straight out of the Old West. The town is steeped in history, and the locals preserve it with their historic districts and the Pioneer Power Days festival in June.
2. Virginia City
The most colorful mining camp in Montana history once called Virginia City home. Before Helena was named the current state capital, Virginia City served as a center for trade for the Alder Gulch, the richest placer mines in the world.
This little city remains frozen in time. It’s a must-see for any tourist or native Montanan.
3. Nevada City
You’ll find Nevada City just one and a half miles west of Virginia City. Nevada City’s mining camp got its start in 1863, and it remains a historic ghost town and point of interest.
Way back when the Bitterroot Valley remained mostly untouched by settlers, Hamilton was built by people working in the lumber, agriculture and railroad industries. Calamity Jane once lived here, and many of the historic buildings have been preserved.
Stevensville, “where Montana began,” was the first permanent settlement in Montana. Jesuit Missionaries built the St. Mary’s Mission, which remains open as a museum today.
Strolling through the tiny, charming town of Augusta truly is like stepping back in time. It’s known as the “Last Original Cow Town in the West” because of its perfectly preserved buildings.
7. Fort Benton
Often called “The birthplace of Montana,” Fort Benton is one of the oldest settlements of the American West, and a portion of the town was designated as a National Historic Landmark District in 1961.
Scobey was home to fur traders, Native Americans and outlaws seeking refuge in the 1800s. In 1901, settlers began occupying the area, and a post office and other buildings were constructed around 1920.
What makes Scobey so special today is the Daniels County Museum & Pioneer Town, which is 20 acres of museum and restored historic buildings. Pioneer Days are held the last weekend in June, which are meant for the whole family to enjoy.