Fort Shaw

Fort Shaw, in Montana was built in 1867, located on the Medicine River, twenty-four miles west of Great Falls. It was first named Camp Reynolds then changed to honor Colonel Robert Gould Shaw, a Civil War soldier. It was established to protect early settlers and travelers on the Mullan Road from raiding Blackfeet. John Gibbon rode out from Fort Shaw in 1876 with the 7th Infantry Regiment with orders to join Alfred Terry and George Armstrong Custer in the Great Sioux War of 1876–77 and in 1877 to attack the Nez Perce in the Battle of the Big Hole.

Fort Shaw was one of the larger posts, and had one building that was 125 feet long where many theatrical functions were held, including the first professional stage performance in Montana. The theater had a floor of hard-packed earth, log benches with no backs for the seats were moved out for dances.

Fort Shaw was abandoned by the army in 1890 but later served as an Indian school. The name Fort Shaw was revived when it became the name of a station and later a small town on the Vaughn-Augusta branch line of the Great Northern Railroad and some distance from the fort remnants.[1] Today there are some buildings from the old days of the fort and one serves as a historical museum that's only open during the summer.


Coordinates: 47°30′32″N 111°49′12″W / 47.50889°N 111.82000°W / 47.50889; -111.82000

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