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Archeological excavation underway in Fort Benton

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Posted at 1:34 PM, Jun 03, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-03 15:34:06-04

FORT BENTON - The birthplace of Montana is home to endless culture and history, including the oldest building in the state located at Fort Benton.

The Bureau of Land Management, Montana State Historic Preservation Office, the Blackfeet tribe and members of the Fort Benton community came together earlier this week in an effort to unearth a part of Montana's history.

The group worked to excavate the historic Engage's quarters throughout this week and is expected to complete the excavation next week.

Josh Chase, the BLM North Central Montana District Archeologist, led the project in conjunction with the River & Plains Society.

Larry Clark, a board member with the River & Plains Society, expressed his gratitude to Chase, "through our cooperative agreement, Josh Chase has come more than once now and led the dig so we can build and get everything freed up."

Engage's quarters were constructed using adobe, but the restored version will be built using concrete made to look like the original adobe.

The project began in 1995 with a few passionate community members from the city of Fort Benton. It has received support on a town, state, and federal level.