Eleven years before statehood, Deer Lodge became home to Montana’s first postsecondary school: the Montana Collegiate Institute. The nonsectarian, coeducational college offered both high school classes and a classical graduating course “as…

“What you hear and what you will see will linger in your memory like a beautiful dream,” proclaimed the Powell County Press when the Rialto Theatre opened with a glittering production of the opera Robin Hood in May of 1921. The Butte architectural…

Banker S. E. Larabie financed the construction of this one-story brick post office in 1911. The Silver State pronounced it “the finest post office of any city of its size in Montana.” The interior featured finished oak, while protective wire…

Hiding behind its brick façade is one of the oldest standing buildings in the business district. Before the Northern Pacific arrived in 1883, Deer Lodge builders relied on locally available materials. They constructed walls from wood or rubble stone…

Before 1910, grocery store customers typically purchased food on credit. They relied on clerks to fill their orders and delivery boys to carry their packages home. By 1915, “groceterias” began experimenting with a new model that offered lower prices…

The December 1910 issue of Moody’s Magazine: The International Investors’ Monthly predicted a strong future for Deer Lodge’s new U.S. National Bank. The community only had one other bank, and the local economic forecast was bright, especially since…