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Situated at the corner of Main Street and 3rd Avenue, the Montana Building is the centerpiece of the Lewistown Central Business Historic District, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The six-story-tall building was built c.1916 and designed in the Neoclassical and Renaissance Revival styles. Notable features include its white terra cotta exterior, an elaborate cornice (the top edge of a wall), and three-story pilasters (decorative elements that look like columns) topped with Corinthian capitals. It represents the growth, prosperity, and optimism Lewistown was experiencing in the early 1900s. Today, the First Bank of Montana and a cafe occupy the building, which remains an important landmark in Lewistown.

Built in 1924, the Montana Building is one of Lewistown's most prominent landmarks.

Built in 1924, the Montana Building is one of Lewistown's most prominent landmarks.

The idea for the Montana Building originated from a group of local businessmen who expected the town's development to continue. They hired well-known Montana architects J.G. Link and Charles Haire, who designed many buildings around the state including county courthouses and St. Leo's Church here in Lewistown. One of the businessmen was George J. Wiedeman, the owner of the Montana Hardware Company, which, along with the Bank of Fergus County, originally occupied the building. However, the construction of the Montana Building came towards the end of Lewistown's early period of growth. After 1916, the town experienced periods of drought and economic uncertainty, especially in 1924 when the banks closed after homesteaders left the area. In December of that year, the First National Bank (the predecessor of the First Bank of Montana) opened in the building and has remained ever since. The hardware store moved to a new location in 1960.

"Lewistown Central Business Historic District." National Park Service - National Register of Historic Places Nomination Form. June 27, 1985.

"Montana Building: Lewistown Central Business Historic District." The Historical Marker Delight. Accessed July 10, 2020.

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