Great Falls, Montana

Great Falls is located in the north-central part and is the third largest city in the U.S. State of Montana. The Electric City. Due to five hydroelectric dams, Great Falls is known as the Electric City. Great Falls has many sparsely traveled roads and there is plenty to be seen on a road bike. Great Falls got its name from five waterfalls and each falls sports a hydroelectric dam today. The city offers many outdoor activities and the area has a breathtaking scenery and wildlife.

To See And To Do In Great Falls

  • The Charles Russell Museum
  • The Paris Gibson Square Museum of Art
  • The History Museum
  • Great Falls Historic Trolley
  • Tour de Great Falls
  • The Lewis and Clark National Historical Trail Interpretative Center
  • Giant Springs State Park
  • The Highwood Mountains
  • The historic Mansfield Center For The Performing Arts
  • Ryan Dam
  • Fort Benton
  • The Holiday Village Mall
  • Glacier National Park
  • Golf Courses
  • First Peoples Buffalo Jump
  • Children's Museum of Montana
  • The Historic Tenth Street Bridge

History Of Great Falls - Timeline

In 1805, Meriwether Lewis was the first white person to visit the region. In 1822, the first white person to visit the site where Great Falls is today was the explorer and trapper Jim Bridger. He was also among the first white men to see the geysers and other natural wonders of the Yellowstone region. In 1823, a fur trader, named Andrew Henry, and his expedition of 150 men visited Great Falls.

In 1824, the British explorer Alexander Ross trapped around Great Falls. In 1855, permanent settlement in the area began to occur. In 1859, the first steamboat arrived and in 1862, the first white woman, Margaret Harkness Woodman, visited Great Falls. In 1863, the Great Falls area was incorporated into the Idaho Territory, And in 1864, into the Montana Territory.

In 1883, Great Falls was founded by Paris Gibson and railroad magnate James J. Hill. In 1884, several houses, a flour mill, a store and the Great Falls post office were established. In 1885, a lumber yard, a bank, a school, a planing mill and a newspaper were established. In 1887, the railroad was completed and linked Great Falls to Butte and Helena in Montana. The town had 1,200 citizens at the time.

In 1888, Great Falls was incorporated and the Great Falls Police Department was established. One year later, in 1889, Great Falls became part of the state of Montana. And the same year a private company was pumping water to residents of Great Falls. Mr. A.W. Kingsbury's building on Central Avenue was the first house with tap water in 1889. In 1890, the Black Eagle Dam and the first library was built.

In 1910, the Rainbow Dam was built, and in 1915, the Volta Dam was completed. The same year the Great Falls Fire Department had motorized firefighting equipment. In 1914, the Police Department had motorized vehicle. In 1920, the Tenth Street Bridge was completed. In 1930, the Morony Dam was built. In 1932, the University of Great Falls was founded.

In 1950, the Mariana UFO Incident occurred in Great Falls. Nicholas Mariana used his camera to film two bright, silvery spheres objects that moved rapidly over the city's baseball stadium. The film was one of the first ever taken of a UFO and the incident is regarded as one of the first great UFO incidents in the United States. In 1955, the Great Falls Air Force Base was renamed Malmstrom Air Force Base. In 1958, the last dam, Cochran, was built. In 1979, the Four Seasons Arena was constructed. In 1982, Great Falls hired the first female firefighter in the state.