The gold rush town of Bannack became Montana's first capital in 1864, the year Montana became a territory. By 1865, gold strikes elsewhere had all but emptied the town of about 3,000, and the territorial capital moved to Virginia City (pop. 130). Today, Bannack is a ghost town and state park.
Gold Rush Town of Bannack — Montana’s First Capital
On the Road, TriviaBy Stuart Englert on September 23, 2001
Stuart Englert Corrie and Kevin Habib, of Cummings, Ga., look for "color" while panning with son Jack at the oldest operating gold mine east of the Mississippi.