Montana is a state in the Western United States. The western third of Montana contains numerous mountain ranges. Smaller, "island range
Island range
An island range is a term used to describe a mountain range that exists in total or almost total isolation from a larger chain of ranges and sub-ranges. From a distance on the plains, these ranges appear as "islands" of higher ground...

s" are found in the central third of the state, for a total of 77 named ranges of the Rocky Mountains
Rocky Mountains
The Rocky Mountains are a major mountain range in western North America. The Rocky Mountains stretch more than from the northernmost part of British Columbia, in western Canada, to New Mexico, in the southwestern United States...

. This geographical fact is reflected in the state's name, derived from the Spanish word (mountain). Montana has several nicknames, none official, including: "Big Sky Country" and "The Treasure State", and slogans that include "Land of the Shining Mountains" and more recently, "The Last Best Place".

1864    Montana is organized as a United States territory.

1867    Atlantic Cable Quartz Lode gold mine located in Montana.

1870    In Montana, U.S. cavalrymen kill 173 Native Americans, mostly women and children, in the Marias Massacre.

1873    Indian Wars: whilst protecting a railroad survey party in Montana, the United States 7th Cavalry, under Lieutenant Colonel George Armstrong Custer clashes for the first time with the Sioux near the Tongue River; only one man on each side is killed.

1887    In a snowstorm at Fort Keogh, Montana, the world's largest snowflakes are reported, {{convert|15|in|cm}} wide and {{convert|8|in|cm}} thick.

1889    President Grover Cleveland signs a bill admitting North Dakota, South Dakota, Montana and Washington as U.S. states.

1889    Montana is admitted as the 41st U.S. state.

1910    An act of the U.S. Congress establishes Glacier National Park in Montana.

1917    Jeannette Rankin of Montana becomes the first female member of the United States House of Representatives.

1943    The Smith Mine #3 in Bearcreek, Montana, explodes, killing 74 men.