Primarily used to detect structure fires that ravaged the town, this 25' wooden tower was built in 1869. The octagonal cab was added in 1886, and last used in 1931. The tower was damaged in a 1936 earthquake but repaired; it was also damaged in a 1950 fire suspected to be lightning-caused, but also ultimately repaired. The tower was again damaged by fire, this time by arson, in August 2016. In February 2017, it was announced that the tower would be demolished and replaced with a similar structure. After public outcry, the tower was not torn down, and a non-profit "Friends of The Fire Tower" was formed in 2018 with the goal of restoring and preserving the historic landmark.
Helena City Fire Dept.
In city of Helena
Lewis & Clark County, Montana
Elevation 4100'

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Guardian of the Gulch in 1890 Guardian of the Gulch in 1928 Guardian of the Gulch in 1938 Guardian of the Gulch in 1942 Guardian of the Gulch in the 1950s Guardian of the Gulch in 1972 Guardian of the Gulch L.O.
Photos courtesy the Montana Memory Project and the Fire Lookout Museum