Fast Facts

Population:
917,621
Capital:
Helena; 26,353
Area:
147,042 square miles (380,838 square kilometers)
Per Capita Income:
U.S. $24,906
Date Statehood Achieved:
November 8, 1889
Illustration: Montana Flag

Only Texas has more land devoted to agriculture than Montana, which celebrated its statehood centennial in 1989. In the Rocky Mountains—scene of a gold rush before statehood—mining of copper, gold, and silver is still profitable. Montana has 50 billion tons of strippable coal, one-third of the nation's reserve, but strip-mining arouses opposition from ranchers and environmentalists. Some 16 million acres of national forest land bristle with fir and pine trees in Big Sky Country. Conservationists press for stricter logging limits.

ECONOMY

  • Industry: Forest products, food processing, mining, construction, tourism
  • Agriculture: Wheat, cattle, barley, hay, sugar beets, dairy products

—Text From National Geographic Atlas of the World, Eighth Edition

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