Merrill Avenue Historic District

W side of Merrill Ave. between S. Douglas St. and W. Clement St., E side of Merrill Ave. between W. Towne and W. Clement, Glendive, Montana


By Royalbroil - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,




"Glendive took root as a steamboat landing on the Yellowstone River and as a railroad center in the middle of prime stock country. When the Northern Pacific reached Glendive in 1881, its first cars transported buffalo hides and bones back to the “states” and river travel became a thing of the past. Soon countless head of cattle were unloaded at Glendive, filling Montana’s empty prairies. Sheep and cattle ranchers enthusiastically promoted the region’s grazing lands and the town’s business opportunities grew when it was designated county seat. The Glendive Times encouraged newcomers, even promising single women “...a ‘right smart’ chance to catch on to husbands.” By 1884 the town supported three hotels, several churches, a school, a courthouse, at least ten saloons, and a variety of other commercial enterprises. A calamitous fire in 1886 destroyed thirteen businesses, but the spirited community rebuilt in more substantial brick. A few buildings, like the Italianate style Masonic Temple, reflect this early period. Dryland farming and homesteaders in the early 1900s had a profound impact on Glendive’s economy. The 1914 Neo-classical style city hall designed by influential Miles City architect Brynulf Rivenes and the 1922 Prairie style depot that anchor the district’s opposite ends well illustrate this prosperous era. Although railroad-related warehouses, grain elevators, and lumberyards no longer line Merrill Avenue’s southeast side, this six-block district represents the years from 1886 to 1930 and tells the story of ranching, railroading, and farming in eastern Montana." - NRHP/Montana Historical Society plaque

National Register information 

Posted to the National Register of Historic Places on February 3, 1988
Reference number
Architectural styles
Late 19th and 20th Century Revival: Classical Revival; Late 19th and 20th Century Revival: Late Gothic Revival; Victorian: Italianate
Areas of significance
Commerce; Transportation; Politics/Government; Architecture
Level of significance
Evaluation criteria
A - Event; C - Design/Construction; B - Person
Property type
Historic functions
City hall; Park; Specialty store; Business
Current functions
Park; Business; City hall; Specialty store
Periods of significance
1900-1924; 1875-1899; 1925-1949
Number of properties
Contributing buildings: 28
Contributing sites: 1
Non-contributing buildings: 15

Update Log 

  • January 28, 2020: New photo from Bill Eichelberger
  • July 15, 2019: Updated by Richard Doody: Added historical information