May 18, 2017

EXTRA! Montana Newspaper Stories 1864-1922: Statehood

By the 1880s, residents of the Montana Territory were ready to embrace statehood and enjoy benefits like full representation in Congress, the power to tax local corporations, and federal land grants to support education. Although there had been previous attempts locally and nationally to create the new state, it took 25 years for Montana Territory to become a state.


Key dates

February 22, 1889—President Cleveland signs the Omnibus Bill, an "enabling act" notifying North Dakota, South Dakota, Washington, and Montana that if they drew up proper constitutions, they would be granted statehood.
July 4, 1889—Representatives elected from across Montana open a constitutional convention in Helena.
October 1, 1889—In a general election, Montanans approve the new state constitution and elect Joseph K. Toole governor.
November 8, 1889—President Harrison proclaims Montana the 41st state.


From the newspapers


To find more

Search for these terms: constitutional convention, statehood

Written by Catherine W. Ockey


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