Fellow Montanans, do you know how your hometown got its name? Unless you live in Bozeman or Billings, the history behind your city could be a mystery. In fact, not many people know the meaning behind these 10 Treasure State towns.
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Glasgow shares a name with the city in Scotland -- and that's no coincidence. When James Hill, who was responsible for creating many communities along the Hi-Line, was founding the community in 1887, he and another local railroader spun a globe, and their fingers landed on Glasgow, Scotland. And that's how this little railroad city got its name.
Manhattan was originally called Hamilton in 1865. Then, in 1883, it was renamed Moreland for the Moreland Irrigation Canal. But around this time, Henry Altenbrand and several other New York businessmen were scouting for the perfect place to grow malting barley for beer-making. They settled on Moreland, which they promptly renamed Manhattan.
Montana's towns certainly shares a lot of names with a lot of foreign places, and this one is no exception. Much like Glasgow, Matla was named by a Great Northern official whose finger came to rest on the island of Malta in the Mediterranean Sea.
Libby is a great name for a town, but it also makes a beautiful name for a female. And, in fact, this town -- and Libby Creek -- happens to be named after early settler Stephen Allen's daughter. Her name was Elizabeth, but everyone called her Libby.
Ever wondered how our state capital got its name? In 1864, a group known as the Four Georgians tumbled upon gold in what is now Helena’s main street. They staked their claim and called it Last Chance Gulch. Eventually, it became clear that a name was needed for the new town, and the Four Georgians named it Crabtown after John Crab, one of the founders. Luckily, it didn't stick, as many miners began to call it Saint Helena instead. Eventually, it was shortened to Helena.
There's actually quite a dispute on how Troy got its name. Most people think it's named after the Troy weight system, which was used to weigh silver and gold. But some say it was named for Troy Morrow, the son of a family that was providing him with room and board while he surveyed the area for track and laid out the town site. Either way, it's a beautiful place to visit or live.
If you've ever passed through this charming town on your way to Yellowstone, you may have wondered how it got its name. The name Gardiner comes from Johnson Gardiner, a fur trapper who operated in the area in the early 1830s. He named today's Gardner River Gardner's Hole, and in the late 1800s, the town was named after the river.
8. Two Dot
Two Dot is a tiny community in Wheatland County. Its name comes from the cattle brand of the late George R. Wilson, who donated the land for the town.
Ekalaka is fun to say, isn't it? It was named after a woman in the Sioux tribe who married a scout named David Harrison Russell.
Ever wondered who would name a city in Montana after a South American snake? The answer is Marcus Daly, who founded the city. Daly filed for a town plat for Copperopolis, but that name was already used by another mining town in Meagher County. Instead, Daly accepted the name Anaconda, which was suggested by the United States postmaster of the time, Clinton Moore.
We definitely have some uniquely named cities here in the Treasure State. Here are some
facts about our history you might not know.