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5 Fun Facts About October 29 In Montana History

---Learn Every Day: MT Today In History Facts Texted Each Day - Text: history mt To: 618-270-4005---

1. In 1864, Montana became a territory of the United States. President Abraham Lincoln signed the Montana Territory Act on May 26, 1864, and it went into effect on October 1 of that same year. However, it wasn't until October 29 that the territorial governor, Sidney Edgerton, arrived in Virginia City to officially begin his duties.

2. In 1908, a major fire swept through the town of Billings. The fire started in a livery stable on the morning of October 29 and quickly spread to nearby buildings. Despite the efforts of firefighters, the blaze destroyed several blocks of homes and businesses. Fortunately, no one was killed in the fire, though many people were left homeless.

3. In 1929, the stock market crashed, marking the beginning of the Great Depression. This event had a profound impact on Montana, as many people lost their life savings and businesses were forced to close. The state's economy, which had been booming in the 1920s, was hit hard and took years to recover.

4. In 1966, the first conservation easement in the United States was established in Montana. The easement was granted by rancher Jack Creek to the Nature Conservancy, and it aimed to protect the land from development while allowing the ranch to continue operating. Today, conservation easements are a common tool used to protect natural resources and preserve open spaces.

5. In 2003, a major snowstorm hit western Montana, dumping as much as four feet of snow in some areas. The storm knocked out power to thousands of residents and caused widespread damage. The snowfall was so heavy that the National Guard had to be called in to help with emergency response efforts.
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