Elling Bank

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Virginia City 59729,Butte Area

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Location: Virginia City

Bankers Nowland and Weary set up business in this brick-veneered building, one of the town’s oldest stone structures, in 1864. Three well-proportioned gothic arches with elaborate tracery, removed during 1910 remodeling, originally graced its stone facade. In 1873, Henry Elling took over the banking business. His first fortune, made in merchandising, had disappeared along with his partner, but Elling quickly recouped his losses. The buying of gold dust proved a most profitable venture and Elling became an expert, able to determine the exact location of extraction from the texture and color of the dust. Under his shrewd direction, Elling’s tiny bank became the first financial capital of Montana. The ornate vault, still intact, always carried large amounts of the dust. The Elling State Bank was organized in 1899 and Elling died a millionaire the following year. His family continued to operate the bank for another thirty years.

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