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5 Fun Facts About July 15 In Montana History

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1. Montana's first state fair opened on July 15, 1893, in Helena. The fair showcased agricultural and industrial exhibits, carnival rides, and other entertainment. It continues to be a popular annual event in the state.

2. On July 15, 1806, the Lewis and Clark Expedition camped at a site now known as Clark's Lookout State Park in southwestern Montana. The site provided them with a panoramic view of the Bitterroot Valley and served as a strategic vantage point for the explorers.

3. One of Montana's deadliest wildfires started on July 15, 1988, in the Northern Rockies. The fire, which was sparked by lightning, burned more than 1.2 million acres of forest, destroyed several homes and buildings, and claimed the lives of three firefighters.

4. In 1946, Montana's first commercial coal-fired power plant, the Colstrip Steam Electric Station, began generating electricity on July 15. The plant, which is still in operation, provides power to several western states.

5. On July 15, 1890, Montana became the 41st state in the United States. It was the culmination of years of effort by statehood activists and marked an important milestone in Montana's history.
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