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About Deer Lodge, MT.

The pure enjoyment and adventure you can have in Deer Lodge and Powell County is limitless:

Hiking, horseback riding, snowmobiling, cross-country skiing, fishing, hunting, mountain biking and photography are all at their very best. Ours is a magical land. A part of the Montana Big Sky Country with primeval forests, gleaming mountaintops and an abundance of wildlife viewing.

We welcome our guests and friends to the Old Montana Inn in historic Deer Lodge, MT. We want you to enjoy the historic attractions our beautiful part of Montana has to offer.  The Old Montana Inn is within a 5-minute walk to the Old Montana State prison, the Old Montana Auto Museum and several other historical sites. We want you stay at The Old Montana Inn to be an educational, entertaining and memorable experience. Give us a call or send us an email if you have specific questions or need additional information. We look forward to seeing you soon. The Old Montana Inn, where you arrive as our guest and leave part of our family.


Deer Lodge is the second oldest town in Montana. Previously called LaBarge City, Spanish Fork, Cottonwood, Deer Lodge City and then finally the current, Deer Lodge. 

The discovery of gold at various points in the western part of the county near Ophir, Blackfoot City, Pioneer, Bear and Elk Gulch resulted in the moving of the county seat from Silver Bow to Deer Lodge.  All of these camps were a lot more populous than Deer Lodge in December 1867 when the county seat was relocated, but Deer Lodge was older, more established and more well-known.

Float gold was first discovered in 1852 on what is now called Gold Creek. The location of this very first discovery is about twenty miles north of modern-day Deer Lodge. Originally settled by sluice gold miners, James and Granville Stuart in 1860, their success attracted other prospectors and the district was established.

Some important events in Montana state history occurred within Powell County, such as...

  • First discovery of gold at Gold Creek in 1852
  • Driving the Golden Spike, September 8, 1883, marked the completion of the Northern Pacific Railroad.
  • First institution of higher learning, Montana Collegiate Institute opened in 1881.
  • Federal Penitentiary, building commenced in 1869 and opened July 2, 1871, for the first prisoners.