American Forts: West

MONTANA

Fort Andrew | Fort Assiniboine (1) | Fort Assiniboine (2) | Fort Belknap | Fort Benton (2)
Camp Big Spring Creek | Fort of the Blackfeet | Fort Browning | Fort Brulé | Fort Campbell
Canoe Camp | Fort Carroll | Carroll Landing Post | Fort F.A. Chardon | Fort Charles
Fort Clagett | Clark's Post | Fort Clay | Fort Conrad | Camp Cooke | Fort Cooke | Fort Copelin
Fort Cotton | Fort Cotton Bottoms | Fort Dauphin | Fort Andrew Dawson | Fort Fourchette
Fort Galpin | A. Hammell's Post (1) | A. Hammell's Post (2) | Fort Hawley | Fort Henry (1)
Fort Henry (4) | Fort Honoré | Fort Jackson | Janneau's Post (1) | Janneau's Post (2)
Judith Landing Post | Fort Kaiser | Kerchival City Post | Fort Kipp | Joseph Kipp's Post
Fort La Barge | Camp Lewis | Fort Lewis (1) | Fort Lewis (2) | Fort Lewis (3) | Camp Loder
Lower Portage Camp | Fort McKenzie | O. McKenzie's Post | Fort Maginnis (2) | Fort Manuel
Camp Morris | Fort Musselshell | Ophir Post | Fort Peck | Fort Piegan (1) | Fort Piegan (2)
Camp Poplar River | Poplar River Post | Reed's Fort | Camp Reeve | Camp Reynolds
Rivet's Post | Cantonment Rocky Point | Rocky Point Post | Roulette's Post | Fort Shaw
Fort Sheridan | Fort Sherman | Fort Standoff | Fort Stewart (1) | Fort Stewart (2)
Sublette and Campbell's Post | Fort Turnay (1) | Fort Turnay (2)

Southern Montana - page 2 | Western Montana - page 3

FORTS AND FIGHTS OF THE MOUNTAIN WEST
OLD FORTS TRAIL

FORT WIKI - MONTANA

Last Update: 12/AUGUST/2019
Compiled by Phil and Pete Payette - ©2019 American Forts Network

Fort Henry (1)
(1810 - 1812 ?), Bainville
A St. Louis Missouri Fur Co. trading post built by Andrew Henry.

Fort Stewart (1)
(1858 - 1860), Fort Kipp
A Frost, Todd and Co. trading post built by Malcolm Clark in the summer of 1858. Transferred to Clark, Primeau and Co. in November 1859, then bought out by the American Fur Co. in 1860 and closed. Abandoned and then burned by Indians. Located on the Missouri River about five miles above Big Muddy Creek (within the present Fort Peck Indian Reservation), about nine miles west of Culbertson.

Fort Kipp
(1859 - 1860), Fort Kipp
An American Fur Company trading post only 600 feet away from Fort Stewart (1). Named for James Kipp. Abandoned and then burned by Indians.

Fort Stewart (2)
(1861 - 1862), Fort Kipp
A trading post built by Charles Larpenteur and Robert Lemon, occupying the same site as Fort Kipp, because usable chimneys were still standing there. Sold in the spring of 1862 to La Barge, Harkness and Co..

Roulette's Post
(1862 - 1863), Fort Kipp
An American Fur Co. trading post at or near the site of Fort Kipp/Stewart (2), built by one of the Roulette brothers (probably Joseph Jr.) in late 1862 (after Fort Stewart (2) was sold). In June 1863 it was attacked and burned by Assiniboine Indians who felt Roulette had cheated them. Roulette had slipped away, but seven others were killed.

Owen McKenzie's Post
(1862 - 1863), near Brockton
A trading post built in August 1862 by La Barge, Harkness and Company, located on the north bank of the Missouri River between Big Muddy Creek and the Poplar River. Owen was the son of Kenneth McKenzie of the American Fur Company. Owen was killed in a drunken brawl with rival trader Malcom Clark in June 1863.

Poplar River Post
(1860 - 1861), Poplar
A winter post built by Charles Larpenteur and Robert Lemon.

Malcolm Clark's Post
(1860 - 1861), Poplar
An American Fur Co. winter post in direct competition with Poplar River Post.

Camp Poplar River
(1880 - 1893), Poplar
An Army cantonment, located on the south bank of the Poplar River, two miles north of the Missouri River.

Fort Assiniboine (1)
(1834 - 1835, 1835 - 1836), near Poplar
A temporary 100-foot square stockaded American Fur Co. trading post and depot on the Missouri River, somewhere near the mouth of the Poplar River, where the steamboat Assiniboine, in the summer of 1834, went aground on a sandbar, during the first known attempt to ascend the river past Fort Union. Unable to free the vessel before winter, the traders built a suitable post for the duration. The boat was not freed until the following March. The American Fur Co. used the site again during the next winter season. Exact location undetermined.

Fort Charles
(1861 - 1863 ?), near Oswego
A trading post originally built by the firm of Bruguier and Booge, located on the north bank of the Missouri River near the mouth of Prairie Elk Creek. The American Fur Co., under Robert Meldrum, took it over in 1863.

Fort Jackson
(1833 - 1834), near Park Grove
An American Fur Co. 50-foot square palisaded winter camp built by trader C.S. (or Francis ?) Chardon in December 1833, located on the Missouri River near the mouth of the Milk River, about ten miles below the Fort Peck Dam.

Shortly after Fort Jackson was built, William Sublette and Robert Campbell sent a trader from Fort William (1) (Buford, North Dakota) to open an opposition post nearby (Sublette and Campbell's Post (early 1834)). Exact location undetermined.

Fort (Louis) Dauphin
(1860 - 1865 ?), near Nashua ?
An independent trader's one-room log cabin probably located near the mouth of the Milk River. Dauphin may have moved his post each season anywhere between the Poplar and Milk Rivers. Dauphin was killed by Sioux Indians in 1865.

Fort Copelin
(1865 - unknown), near Nashua
A trading post and supply depot on the Milk River for the Montana and Idaho (Steamboat) Transportation Line, operated by John Copelin and John Roe.

Louis Rivet's Post
(1867), near Nashua
An independent trading post on the "Big Bend" of the Milk River.

Fort Charles Galpin
(1862 - 1864), near Fort Peck
A La Barge, Harkness and Co. fur trade post built by Charles Larpenteur on the north bank of the Missouri River at Moose Point, about 12 miles above the Milk River. Site now underwater (Fort Peck Lake).

Fort Peck
(1867 - 1879), Fort Peck
Located about one mile above (west of) the site of the present-day dam, on the north side of the Missouri River, it was the fortified trading post of the Durfee and Peck Co., and between 1871 and 1879 also served double duty as the Milk River Indian Agency. It was a 300-foot square log palisade with five bastions (blockhouses) and enclosing various log structures. The site of the fort is now underwater due to erosion of the bluff and the construction of the Fort Peck Dam (1933-40).

Fort Kaiser
(1865 - unknown), near Fort Peck
A trading post located somewhere near the town of Fort Peck.
(info courtesy of Jerome Grenz)

Fort Fourchette
(unknown dates), near Regina
A trading post located on Fourchette Creek.
(info courtesy of Jerome Grenz)

Fort Sheridan
(1870 - 1874), near Valentine
Kerchival City Post (1866 - 1868) was first established on the Missouri River at the Musselshell River (Crooked Creek), but the settlement was abandoned. Fort Musselshell (1868 - 1870) was then built by the Montana Hide and Fur Co. on the south bank of the Missouri River to attract settlers to the newly created town of Musselshell. The Army arrived and built the stockaded tent camp Camp Reeve (1868) until the new town could be well established. The town of eight buildings and 50 settlers was attacked by the Sioux in March 1869. The Montana Hide and Fur Co. abandoned the town in August 1870. The stockaded Fort Sheridan trade post was built by "Colonel" George Clendennin, after the abandonment of Fort Musselshell, who continued to trade here. Replaced by Fort Carroll when that town was founded. A state marker is located on MT 200 just east of Mosby.

Camp Loder
(1879), near Valentine
A temporary Army post located near Fort Sheridan on the Musselshell River at Lodge Pole Creek.

Fort Andrew
(1862 - 1863), near Valentine
An American Fur Co. 125-foot square log palisaded trading post located on the north bank of the Missouri River about 15 miles upstream from the Musselshell River. Also known as Fort Andrew Dawson in some accounts. Presumed site probably flooded by the Fort Peck Reservoir.

Fort Carroll
(1874 - 1882), near Valentine
Located on the Missouri River about 25 miles upstream from the Musselshell River. A trading post and steamboat landing also called Carroll Landing Post, built by the Diamond 'R' Transportation Co.. Replaced Fort Sheridan. An Army garrison was here in 1874 - 1875. The town of Carroll was later abandoned.

Fort Hawley
(1866 - 1867), near Valentine
A trading post built by Louis Rivet for the Hubble and Hawley Co.. Located on the south bank of the Missouri River about 25 miles east of the US 191 crossing.

Cantonment Rocky Point
(1881), near Valentine
A temporary Army camp and government landing on the Missouri River during the building of Fort Maginnis (2). Rocky Point Post, a civilian trading post of the C.A. Broadwater and Co., was also here during that time. Located 11 miles upstream from Fort Carroll.

Also here at Rocky Point was Joseph Kipp's Trade Post (1881 - 1882). Joseph was the son of James Kipp of the American Fur Co..

Fort Maginnis (2) (State Monument)
(1880 - 1890), near Maiden
A Federal fort built on Ford's (or Forge) Creek to protect settlers and cattlemen. It was abandoned, and later dismantled by the citizens of Lewistown where some of the houses were rebuilt. Four miles southwest is the ghost town Giltedge. Some ground depressions still remain, as well as the remains of the old Post Cemetery. See also The Building of Fort Maginnis on RootsWeb.com

Fort Sherman
(1873 - 1874), Lewistown
A private trading post of the Story and Hoffman Co. that was sold and replaced by Reed's Fort.

"Major" Alonzo Reed's Fort
(1874 - 1888), Lewistown
A private trading post (log cabin) that replaced Fort Sherman. Reed was not known to be a genuine Army major. Became the town's first post office in 1881, known as Reed's Fort. Reed sold out to Frank Day in 1882. The town was renamed in 1883. Located about 1.5 miles down Spring Creek from Fort Sherman. The original cabin, later converted to a post office, still survives, located in a city park below the mouth of Casino Creek.

Francis Janneau's Post (2)
(1879 - 1882), Lewistown
A 100-by 150-foot stockaded trading post with two bastions (blockhouses), also known as Fort Turnay (2). Also spelled Janeaux.

Camp Lewis
(1874), Lewistown
A temporary Federal camp located two miles southeast of town. A sub-post of Fort Shaw originally called Camp Big Spring Creek. A small plaque is located on Main Street between 3rd and 4th Aves..

Fort Chardon
(1844 - 1845), near Everson
An American Fur Co. trading post built by trader Francis A. Chardon on the north bank of the Missouri River just below the mouth of the Judith River. Also known in records as Fort F.A. Chardon, or Fort F.A.C.. It replaced Fort McKenzie, and was then replaced in turn by Fort Lewis (1). Alexander Culbertson replaced Chardon in the summer of 1845, before he left to build Fort Lewis (1) upriver. The abandoned post was burned down in either late 1845 or early 1846.

Fort Clagett
(1870 - 1880's), near Everson
A trading post and depot built by the T.C. Power and Brothers Co., originally located on the south side of the Missouri River above the Judith River, known as Fort Cooke until renamed in 1872. The post was moved to Judith Landing on the east side of the mouth of the Judith River in 1878. Sold to Major Gilman Norris of the Merchantile and Cattle Company in 1883, and operated for several more years as the Judith Landing Post.

Camp Cooke
(1866 - 1870), near Everson
A stockaded Army post located one mile west of the mouth of the Judith River. No remains.

Fort Turnay (1)
(1872 - 1879 ?), near Hinsdale
A Durfee and Peck Co. trading post located on Frenchman's Creek about 12 miles north of the Milk River. Provided winter shelter for 100 Canadian Metis families during one year. Used by the United States Northern Boundary Survey team on another occasion. Also known as Francis Janneau's Post (1).
(thanks to Jim Antoine for providing info)

Augustin Hammell's Post (1)
(1850's and/or 1860's), unknown location
A short-lived temporary American Fur Co. satellite post somewhere on the Milk River.

Fort Browning
(1868 - 1872), near Dodson
A trading post located on the Milk River two miles southwest of town.

Fort Belknap
(1871 - 1886), Chinook
A Durfee and Peck Co. trading post on the south bank of the Milk River. The Fort Belknap Indian Agency, located 30 miles east, adopted the name later in 1888.

Fort Assiniboine (2) (Historical Site)
(Montana State University - Northern Agricultural Research Center)
(1879 - 1911), near Havre
At one time this was the largest Army post (in acreage) west of the Mississippi River. It consisted largely of brick-built buildings. Located on Beaver Creek four miles above the Milk River, six miles southwest of town, it was built to prevent Sitting Bull and his followers from returning from Canada. It became a state Agricultural Experiment Station in 1913 and most of the original buildings were then torn down. A guardhouse and Officers' quarters remain. Tours in season by appointment only. Artifacts are on display at the H. Earl Clack Museum in town. See also Visit Montana.com || The Montana Fort Assiniboine by Doug Minor

Fort Piegan (1)
(1831 - 1832), Loma
An American Fur Co. wintering post built by James Kipp on the north side of the Missouri River just above the mouth of the Marias River, near a former campsite of the Lewis and Clark Expedition (June 1805). Alternatively the post may have been located on a small island in the confluence of the two rivers. Consisted of three log cabins within a stockade. Burned by Indians in the spring after it was abandoned.

Fort McKenzie
(1832 - 1844), near Loma
An American Fur Co. trading post, also called Fort Piegan (2), located on the north bank of the Missouri River about six or seven miles above the mouth of the Marias River. Operated by David Mitchell. Originally built in the late summer or fall of 1832, it was rebuilt somewhat larger in the summer of 1833 as a 1,420 square-foot quadrangular stockade fort with two blockhouses and several cannon. Burned by the company as it was being abandoned in the spring of 1844, after a deadly incident in February so angered the local Blackfoot Indians. The site was later referred to as Fort Brulé (the "burned fort"). Replaced by Fort Chardon.

Ophir Post
(1864 - 1865), near Loma
Located on the south bank of the Marias River near its confluence with the Missouri River. A short-lived "trading post" created as an emergency measure when the steamboat Cutter failed during the winter. Abandoned in May 1865 after being attacked by Blood Indians.

Augustin Hammell's Post (2)
(1850's and/or 1860's), unknown location
A short-lived temporary American Fur Co. satellite post somewhere on the Marias River.

Fort Benton (2)
(1847 - 1881), Fort Benton
Located at River Front Park, the original northeast blockhouse and an adobe barracks wall still remain. The rest of the post is a modern reconstruction begun in the 1990's. This was the last navigable steamboat port on the upper Missouri River, the first steamboats arrived in June 1862. Originally built by the American Fur Co. as Fort Clay, a cottonwood log stockade, it was also still known as Fort Lewis (3), after the post it had just replaced three miles upstream. It was renamed in December 1850 after the wooden walls were already beginning to be replaced with adobe, continuing until 1858. This is considered the state's first permanent white settlement. The post was sold in 1866 to the I.G. Baker Company. The Army took control of the fort in 1869 after whiskey traders caused trouble here and in Canada. (see also Fort Conrad below, and Fort Whoop-Up, Alberta)

Fort Campbell
(1845 - 1860), Fort Benton
A Harvey, Primeau and Co. log stockade trading post originally located on the south bank of the Missouri River, built by Alexander Harvey. Moved in 1847 across the river, one mile west (upstream) of Fort Benton (2), and rebuilt with adobe, the first such post in the state. Sold to the American Fur Company in 1857 and later abandoned by 1860. The adobe post became a Jesuit mission for the Flathead Indians after 1860. Site marked at River and 12th Streets.

Fort La Barge
(1862 - 1863), Fort Benton
An adobe-built trade post located 1.5 miles upriver from Fort Benton (2), built by James Harkness of the La Barge, Harkness and Co.. Joseph Picotte and then Robert Lemon were the post operators. Sold to the American Fur Company and dismantled. Site marked at River and 10th Streets.

Fort Lewis (2)
(1846 - 1847), near Fort Benton
Alexander Culbertson of the American Fur Company relocated Fort Lewis (1) here on the south bank of the Missouri River, east of Shonkin Creek, three miles upriver from Fort Benton (2). It was later moved again in May 1847 (Fort Benton (2)).

Originally located here was Fort Cotton, or Fort Cotton Bottoms (late 1842 or early 1843 - 1845), built by the Union Fur Company. It was abandoned and then burned in the fall of 1845.

Fort Lewis (1)
(1845 - 1846), near Carter
A short-lived American Fur Co. trading post on the south bank of the Missouri River opposite Pablois Island, 18 miles upriver from Fort Benton (2). It was to replace Fort Chardon. Alexander Culbertson wanted to name the post Fort Honoré (after Honoré Picotte), but Picotte recommended it should instead be named after Meriwether Lewis. It was also known as Fort Henry (4) (a corruption of Honoré), or Fort of the Blackfeet. Dismantled and moved 15 miles downriver (Fort Lewis (2)).

Great Falls Camps
(1805, 1806), Great Falls
Two campsites of the Lewis and Clark Expedition on the Missouri River. Lower Portage Camp was located below the falls, and Canoe Camp was located above the falls. It took the Expedition eight days to bypass the falls with all their equipment and supplies. The sites were used again on the return trip eastward.

Fort Shaw
(1867 - 1891), Fort Shaw
Originally named Camp Reynolds. It was built to protect settlers in the Sun River Valley, and the road from Fort Benton (2) to Helena. After it was closed, the fort was used as an Indian School from 1892 until 1910. Some of the original buildings still exist; some private, some abandoned, and some used by the Fort Shaw Elementary School (since 1920). One of the former Officers' Quarters is now a museum, open only in the summer months.

Fort Conrad
(1875 - 1880's), near Shelby
A stockaded trade post located on the Marias River south of town, built by Charles Conrad. Bought by Joseph Kipp in 1878 and sold again sometime after that to James McDevitt. The actual site has eroded away. This may have also been known as Fort Standoff, a whiskey traders' fort named after the incident where Joseph Kipp bluffed and eluded U.S. Marshalls from taking him into custody.

Camp Morris
(1883), Whitlash
A temporary Army post on the west side of Cottonwood Creek near the Sweet Grass Hills.


NEED MORE INFO: Square Butte near Ulm called "Fort Mountain"; Nickwall Creek near Poplar also called "Indian Fort Creek".
Towns:

Thanks to Jerome Grenz for additional information on Montana forts and posts.

Southern Montana - page 2 | Western Montana - page 3

QUESTIONS ? Please send any corrections and/or additions to this list to:
"Updates" at NorthAmericanForts.com