CCL History

      Chouteau County Library, the oldest county library in Montana, came about largely because of the efforts of Mrs. A. E. McLeish and the Fort Benton Women’s Club.  A petition sponsored by the club was eventually signed by 30 voters, two-thirds of whom lived outside the county seat of Fort Benton.  The library was established in 1915 by a legislative act that allowed for securing of funds for county libraries.  After the donation of three lots in Fort Benton by Joseph Hirshberg and the procurement of a grant from the Carnegie Foundation the two story brick building was erected and opened in 1916.  In 1988 the library was remodeled for handicapped accessibility and in 1994 an addition was completed to become the beautiful building of today.

Fort Benton Women’s Club who secured the first free county library in the state of Montana

library 001    library                                                      The brand new library, 1916


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