Fort Peck, Montana
Fort Peck is a town in Valley County
Valley County, Montana
-Demographics:As of the census of 2000, there were 7,675 people, 3,150 households, and 2,129 families residing in the county. The population density was 2 people per square mile . There were 4,847 housing units at an average density of 1 per square mile...

, Montana
Montana is a state in the Western United States. The western third of Montana contains numerous mountain ranges. Smaller, "island ranges" are found in the central third of the state, for a total of 77 named ranges of the Rocky Mountains. This geographical fact is reflected in the state's name,...

, United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

. The population was 240 at the 2000 census.


The name Fort Peck is associated with Col. Campbell K. Peck, the partner of Elias H. Durfee in the Leavenworth, Kansas, trading firm of Durfee and Peck. In 1867, company employee Abe Farwell constructed the Fort Peck trading post along the Missouri River, which enjoyed a virtual monopoly in trade with the Sioux and Assiniboine people. After its short life as a trading post, Fort Peck served as an Indian agency from 1873 until 1878. At that time, the agency was moved to its current location at Poplar. Fort Peck had a post office from 1879 to 1881.

A new town of Fort Peck, located about 2 miles north of the original, was built in 1934 to house Army Corps of Engineers employees involved in the construction of the Fort Peck Dam
Fort Peck Dam
The Fort Peck Dam is the highest of six major dams along the Missouri River, located in northeast Montana in the United States, near Glasgow, and adjacent to the community of Fort Peck...

. Designed to be temporary, the government-owned town nevertheless included many features of a permanent town, including an administrative headquarters, a hospital, stores, a theater, a recreation hall, and other facilities. Totally inadequate to house the 10,000-plus employees, Fort Peck was soon joined by numerous shanty town
Shanty town
A shanty town is a slum settlement of impoverished people who live in improvised dwellings made from scrap materials: often plywood, corrugated metal and sheets of plastic...

s, including Wheeler, New Deal, Delano Heights, and Park Grove. The Fort Peck Original Houses Historic District, the Fort Peck Theatre, and the hospital, administration building, and other associated public works properties are listed in the National Register.


The US Army Corps of Engineers, which oversees the powerhouses, dam, lake, and dredge cuts, is the major employer in Fort Peck, as well as, other government programs. Until recently all of the houses in Fort Peck were government built.

Fort Peck draws people from hundreds of miles away to recreate around Fort Peck Reservoir. Most popular is utilizing the lake and dredge cuts for boating, swimming, and fishing. Camping and barbecuing are very popular also and facilities for camping and cooking are well developed. The Fort Peck Theater is open during the summer and draws large crowds.


Fort Peck is located at 48°0′28"N 106°27′1"W (48.007858, -106.450327).

According to the United States Census Bureau
United States Census Bureau
The United States Census Bureau is the government agency that is responsible for the United States Census. It also gathers other national demographic and economic data...

, the town has a total area of 0.9 square miles (2.3 km²), all of it land.


As of the census
A census is the procedure of systematically acquiring and recording information about the members of a given population. It is a regularly occurring and official count of a particular population. The term is used mostly in connection with national population and housing censuses; other common...

of 2000, there were 240 people, 91 households, and 75 families residing in the town. The population density
Population density
Population density is a measurement of population per unit area or unit volume. It is frequently applied to living organisms, and particularly to humans...

 was 274.9 people per square mile (106.5/km²). There were 99 housing units at an average density of 113.4 per square mile (43.9/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 96.25% White, 2.08% Native American, and 1.67% from two or more races.

There were 91 households out of which 38.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 73.6% were married couples
Marriage is a social union or legal contract between people that creates kinship. It is an institution in which interpersonal relationships, usually intimate and sexual, are acknowledged in a variety of ways, depending on the culture or subculture in which it is found...

 living together, 5.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 16.5% were non-families. 14.3% of all households were made up of individuals and 7.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.64 and the average family size was 2.89.

In the town the population was spread out with 28.8% under the age of 18, 2.9% from 18 to 24, 21.7% from 25 to 44, 32.9% from 45 to 64, and 13.8% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 43 years. For every 100 females there were 92.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 87.9 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $47,083, and the median income for a family was $50,938. Males had a median income of $32,500 versus $33,750 for females. The per capita income
Per capita income
Per capita income or income per person is a measure of mean income within an economic aggregate, such as a country or city. It is calculated by taking a measure of all sources of income in the aggregate and dividing it by the total population...

 for the town was $17,943. None of the families and 0.8% of the population were living below the poverty line, including no under eighteens and 6.9% of those over 64.

Notable natives and residents

  • David Midthunder, Assiniboine-Sioux actor was born here. He grew up on the Fort Peck Reservation
    Fort Peck Indian Reservation
    The Fort Peck Indian Reservation is near Fort Peck, Montana. It is the homeland of the Assiniboine and Sioux tribes of Native Americans. It is the ninth-largest Indian reservation in the United States and comprises parts of four counties. In descending order of land area they are Roosevelt, Valley,...

    . (The Missing
    The Missing
    The Missing is a 2003 Western thriller film directed by Ron Howard, based on Thomas Eidson's 1996 novel The Last Ride.This Western thriller set in 1885 New Mexico Territory is notable for the authentic use of the Apache language by various actors, some of whom spent long hours studying it...

    , Hidalgo
    Hidalgo (film)
    Hidalgo is a 2004 film based on the legend of the American distance rider Frank Hopkins and his mustang Hidalgo, and recounts Hopkins' racing his horse in Arabia in 1891 against Bedouin riding pure-blooded Arabian horses. The movie was written by John Fusco and directed by Joe Johnston...

    and Into the West
    Into the West (TV miniseries)
    Into the West is a 2005 miniseries produced by Steven Spielberg and Dreamworks, with six two-hour episodes . The series was first broadcast in the U.S. on Turner Network Television on six Fridays starting on June 10, 2005...

  • Wayne Hawkins
    Wayne Hawkins
    Wayne Hawkins was an American college and Professional Football player from the University of the Pacific. Drafted as an offensive guard in the American Football League's first draft by the Denver Broncos in their "First Selection round", he joined the Oakland Raiders through the allocation draft...

    , Oakland Raiders
    Oakland Raiders
    The Oakland Raiders are a professional American football team based in Oakland, California. They currently play in the Western Division of the American Football Conference in the National Football League...

    Guard (American football)
    In American and Canadian football, a guard is a player that lines up between the center and the tackles on the offensive line of a football team....

    , was born here.
  • Ron Hauge
    Ron Hauge
    Ron Hauge is an American television writer and executive producer. In his earlier career Hauge was a contributor to National Lampoon. After this he wrote for Seinfeld, In Living Color, The Ren & Stimpy Show, and a short lived reincarnation of The Carol Burnett Show...

    , Emmy award winning writer for The Simpsons
    The Simpsons
    The Simpsons is an American animated sitcom created by Matt Groening for the Fox Broadcasting Company. The series is a satirical parody of a middle class American lifestyle epitomized by its family of the same name, which consists of Homer, Marge, Bart, Lisa and Maggie...

     grew up here, and went to high school in the neighboring city of Glasgow
    Glasgow, Montana
    Glasgow is a city in and the county seat of Valley County, Montana, United States. The population was 3,253 at the 2000 census.-History:Glasgow was founded in 1887 as a railroad town by James J. Hill, who was responsible for creating many communities along the Hi-Line. The town was named after...


External links

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