Anaconda Commercial Historic District

Roughly bounded by Commercial Ave., Main St., Chestnut St. and E. Park Ave., Anaconda, Montana

Photos 

Anaconda Historic District, Ancient Order of Hibernians Hall

1. NORTH FACADE OF THE A.O.H. BUILDING. PORTIONS OF THE ORIGINAL STOREFRONTS ARE VISIBLE, THOUGH THE BUILDING IS BOARDED UP

Photo from the Historic American Buildings Survey

View photos at Library of Congress

Map 

Description 

"Backed by the powerful San Francisco syndicate of Hearst, Haggin and Tevis, Marcus Daly built the world’s largest smelter (combined upper and lower works) on Warm Springs Creek between 1883 and 1889. Along with the smelters, Daly envisioned a substantial city and filed the original townsite plat June 25, 1883. While smelter construction got underway that summer, people arrived faster than building supplies. The first boarding houses and saloons opened in tents. A railroad spur soon linked the town to the Anaconda Mine in Butte. By the time the furnaces of the Upper Works fired up in the fall of 1884, Anaconda’s 80 buildings included seven hotels and boarding houses and twelve saloons. At the end of 1885, Anaconda’s reduction works had a payroll of 1,700. The Anaconda Copper Mining Company dominated the local economy. Company subsidiaries built and maintained the city water supply, electric power system, and street railway. Daly and his associates established key commercial enterprises including the major bank, retailer D. J. Hennessy’s local company store, a race track, the highly acclaimed Montana Standard, and the Montana Hotel. Modeled after New York City’s Hoffman House, this premier hotel represented Daly’s political ambition as he promoted Anaconda in the race for state capital. Daly was bitterly disappointed when the city lost the capital race in 1894, but Anaconda survived as a vibrant piece of the Montana mosaic. Significant for its labor history and ethnic diversity, this unique company town was a place where private enterprise also flourished. Elaborate Victorian-era business blocks and the more utilitarian façades of the early twentieth century are testimony to a vigorous business community." - NRHP/Montana Historical Society plaque

National Register information 

Status
Posted to the National Register of Historic Places on February 25, 1998
Reference number
98000155
Architectural styles
Victorian; American Movement; Late 19th and 20th Century Revival
Areas of significance
Architecture; Transportation; Social History; Politics/Government; Industry; Economics; Community Planning and Development; Commerce
Levels of significance
State; Local
Evaluation criteria
C - Design/Construction; B - Person; A - Event
Property type
District
Historic functions
Single dwelling; Restaurant; Department store; Specialty store; Financial institution; Organizational; Professional; Business
Current functions
Hotel; Single dwelling; Restaurant; Specialty store; Financial institution; Professional; Business
Periods of significance
1925-1949; 1900-1924; 1875-1899
Significant years
1888; 1895; 1931
Number of properties
Contributing buildings: 63
Contributing structures: 1
Non-contributing buildings: 40

Update Log 

  • August 19, 2019: Updated by Richard Doody: Added historical information

Sources