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Facts: Military Forts (redirected from Facts and Information: Military Forts)

Page history last edited by Natasha 6 years, 10 months ago

Band. Guard mount at Ft. Keogh - in fur coats. January, 1882.




Military Forts


This list does not include fur trade or privately-run forts but strictly military-operated forts.  The information in the following table was compiled from K. Ross Toole and Merrill G. Burlingame, A History of Montana (New York: Lewis Historical Pub. Co., 1957), Vol. 2, p. 150, Don Miller and Stan Cohen, Military & Trading Posts of Montana (Missoula: Pictorial Histories Publishing Company, 1979), and Encyclopedia of Historic Forts: The Military, Pioneer, and Trading Posts of the United States (New York: MacMillan Publishing Company,1988).


Ancestry.com has scanned post returns for the forts below. Post returns were "a type of personnel report" made monthly by commanding officers of posts and they "show the units that were stationed at a particular post and their strength, the names and duties of the officers, the number of officers present or absent, a listing of official communications received, and a record of events." You can either search for a person or by post.  If searching by post, be search to check the box "Exact" for both the Post Name and the Return Period.   


Name Date Established Location Named For
Fort C. F. Smith 1866 On Bighorn River, some ninety miles from mouth, on crossing of Bozeman Road Charles Ferguson Smith, Major General of Volunteers
Camp Cooke 1866 South bank of Missouri just west of mouth of Judith River Brigadier General Philip St. George Cooke


Camp Reynolds/

Fort Shaw

1866 (1867) On Sun River some twenty miles west of the Missouri Colonel Robert G. Shaw
Fort Ellis 1867 Three miles east of Bozeman Colonel Augustus Van Horne Ellis
Fort Benton 1870 Present town of Fort Benton Took name of fur fort named for Senator Thomas Hart Benton of Missouri
Camp Baker / Fort Logan  1869 (1877) 18 miles northeast of Diamond City, 15 miles west of White Sulphur Springs Major E. M. Baker of Fort Ellis; Fort Logan for Captain William Logan, killed in Battle of the Big Hole
Camp (Cantonment) Porter 1873 3 miles above the mouth of Glendive Creek along the banks of the Yellowstone River  
Fort Missoula 1877 Five miles south of Missoula Took name of town
Fort Keogh 1877 On Yellowstone at mouth of Tongue River Captain Myles W. Keogh, 7th Cavalry, killed on Bighorn with Custer
Fort Custer 1877 At junction of Little Bighorn with the Bighorn Major General George A. Custer
Helena Barracks 1877 On Helena Fair Grounds about 3 miles outside city Took name from town
Fort Assiniboine 1879 Six miles south of Havre Took name of Indians
Camp Loder 1879 On Lodge Pole Creek near Fort Musselshell  
Camp Poplar River 1880 2 miles north of the Missouri, on site of the present day town of Poplar Took name of river
Camp Porter 1880 Established on Yellowstone River near Glendive Creek, on site of the present day town of Glendive  
Fort Maginnis 1880 Judith Basin some twenty miles northeast of Lewistown Montana Representative to Congress, Martin Maginnis
Camp Crook 1890 Near what is now the Northern Cheyenne Indian Reservation (old Tongue River Indian Agency)  
Camp Merritt 1890 On Lame Deer Creek, near present town of Lame Deer in Rosebud County and what is now the Northern Cheyenne Indian Reservation (old Tongue River Indian Agency)  
Fort William Henry Harrison 1892 Five miles northwest of Helena President William Henry Harrison; First named Fort Harrison for President Benjamin Harrison; name changed in 1906


 Montana Historical Society Research Center

 225 North Roberts, P.O. Box 201201, Helena, MT 59620-1201, 406-444-2681, 406-444-2696 (fax).



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