Garnet Ghost Town, Montana
A young nation expanded into the Montana territory in the mid-1860s. Homesteaders rode steamboats and rail cars in search of untouched land and the freedom to choose their own destiny. Many scoured the mountains for gold and other precious metals.
Settlements grew overnight around mining claims. The town of Garnet was born in 1895, and within several years, hundreds of people called it home. The blasts of dynamite and the shouts of miners echoed through the gulches.
This remote town boasted hotels, stores, and saloons, as well as a school, laundry, drug store, assay office, and weekly newspaper. But Garnet was not destined to last. By 1912, the large strikes were depleted, fire had raged through town, and most miners had left in search of new riches.
Today, most of the town is publicly owned, and managed by the BLM. The BLM stabilizes and preserves the remaining two dozen buildings and provides visitors a glimpse into this fascinating part of our past.
Photo by Maria Craig, BLM