The homesteading boom was in full swing in 1910, but not all of Montana's newcomers came to farm. With the arrival of three transcontinental railroads, Billings became established as a regional hub of commerce. Many businesses saw opportunity in…

In 1884, two years after the Northern Pacific founded the town of Billings, a one-story wooden grocery store stood on this site. Twelve years later, the corner of Minnesota and Twenty-seventh boasted one of the South Side's first brick…

Billings, located halfway between Minneapolis and Spokane, boasted railroads running in seven directions by 1916. Quantities of freight arrived each day from points east, and large warehouses lined the tracks, filled with goods awaiting resale.…

Once considered the “wrong side of the tracks,” Minnesota Avenue was known for its many bars, brothels, cigar stores, and Chinese restaurants. (Chinese districts often bordered red light districts, serving inexpensive food to the working women and…

The later 1940s and the aftermath of World War II brought economic prosperity. Americans became more stable financially, mobility increased, and so did the demand for automobiles. Price Motor Sales, one example of this trend, opened in 1948 to serve…

John Losekamp brought boots and shoes to Billings by mule train in 1882, when a cluster of tents and a few log cabins defined the business district. The pioneer merchant purchased this lot around 1890, constructing a two-story brick business block…

Warehouses are known for their solid construction, and the Crane Co. warehouse, built of brick with heavy timber frame support and a concrete foundation, is no exception. The plumbing supply firm of Crane and Ordway already had warehouses in Great…