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Lewis and Clark County is located in western Montana and is known for its stunning mountain ranges, rich mining history, and outdoor recreation opportunities. Here are 7 interesting facts about the county's history that you may not have known:

1. It was established in 1864: Although the Lewis and Clark Expedition passed through the area in 1805-1806, Lewis and Clark County was not officially created until nearly 60 years later. It was named after the famous explorers who first mapped the territory.

2. It was home to bustling mining towns: During the late 1800s and early 1900s, Lewis and Clark County was a hub for gold and silver mining. Towns such as Helena, Marysville, and Rimini thrived and attracted many settlers looking to strike it rich. Today, you can still see remnants of the mining era in the form of abandoned mines and ghost towns.

3. Helena served as Montana's capital: In 1875, Helena was named the capital of Montana and has remained so ever since. The city is home to the Montana State Capitol building, which was completed in 1902 and features a stunning copper dome and marble interior.

4. It was a hotspot for cattle rustling: During the late 1800s, cattle rustling was a common problem in Lewis and Clark County. The rugged terrain and vast open spaces made it easy for rustlers to steal cattle and evade law enforcement. Many ranchers hired private detectives to track down their stolen livestock.

5. Its landscape inspired famous artists: Lewis and Clark County's natural beauty has been an inspiration to many artists throughout history. Charles M. Russell, a renowned Western artist, made his home in Helena and used the surrounding mountains and prairies as the backdrop for many of his paintings.

6. It was home to the first smokejumpers: In the 1930s, the U.S. Forest Service created the first smokejumper program in the country in Missoula, Montana. Many of the first smokejumpers were trained in Lewis and Clark County and would parachute into remote areas to fight forest fires.

7. It's a popular filming location: Lewis and Clark County has been featured in a number of movies and TV shows over the years, including "A River Runs Through It," "The Horse Whisperer," and "The Revenant." The county's stunning scenery and historic landmarks make it a popular choice for filmmakers.

These are just a few of the many interesting facts about Lewis and Clark County's rich history. Whether you're a history buff or just looking to explore Montana's great outdoors, this county has something for everyone.

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