There are many nicknames for the state, such as "The Last Remaining Wilderness", "Big Sky Country", and the "Treasure State". The official nicknamed is the "Mountain State", which is named of course for the state's many mountain ranges. People from the state are as "Frontiersmen".
The first settlers in the area came in the mid-1850s. The Lewis and Clark Expedition, which was sent nearly half a century earlier, reported that is was possible that minerals could be in the mountains in the state, but no one went over there because of the barren wilderness and the fact that it was cut off from all the other states. In the 1850s and 1860s, settlers in Canada were streaming into the western part of the nation, and Americans, knowing that they would benefit from trading with the new settlers to the north, came in numbers to the areas in eastern Frontier. In July 1872, Lewis and Clark's thoughts were proved to be right, and minerals such as gold, silver, copper, and were found, as well as oil. The settlers also set up farms, and soon agriculture became as important as the minerals. The agriculture and mineral resources made more settlers come, making the government in Washington D.C. create the Territory of Frontier in 1874.
Railroads soon came, which eased the transportation of goods from Frontier to other cities. The first railroad, the Easton-Chicago Railroad, made the economy boom as products from one city could come to another. Easton, situated in the Red River Valley near the border with Canada, had many rich agricultural products. Traders and miners also came hear to send their goods to Chicago. In 1889, the Easton-Chicago Railroad was connected to the First Transcontinental Railroad, and a railroad was constructed, connected Easton with the city of Winnipeg City in Winnipeg. The railroad was the first international railroad constructed between the US and Winnipeg.It was pretty clear that Frontier was ready to be a state by 1891, but an an Indian uprising put the plans on delay. The US Army was sent in, but the Indians poured fire on the US soldiers. The war lasted three years, mainly in the western half of the state. The war was finally ended in 1894, with the defeat of the Native Americans at the Battle of Southern Helena. Reseverations had to be set up for the Native Americans, and plus they had to move the Native Americans there, which was hard work and continued to delay the territory's statehood. The job was finished in 1899, and Frontier was made a state in 1900.
StatehoodThe Territory of Frontier was now the State of Frontier. The settlers slowly spread west, and in 1909 the revised Homestead Act doubled the free land per family, from 160 acres to 320 acres. This increased available farmland to a family, and each family could grow more. Wheat became the staple crop of the state, and was important to the economy. Cattle ranching was also important to the state's economy. From 1909 to 1916, in what is known as the "Coming of the Settlers", thousands of settlers came to the state, lured by free land and high wheat prices. They weren't prepared for the climate, which had little rainfall and farming required special techniques. In 1916, many settlers went and joined the army, ending the coming. It was originally thought that wheat from Frontier would be sent to Pacific ports to feed soldiers, but droughts from 1917 to 1919 ended this, and devastated the economy.
In the 1930s, the Great Depression continued to worsen the economy, but in the 1940s it rebounded back. Today, wheat is still an important part to the state's economy, and is one of the largest producers in the United States. Tourism plays and important part as well, with many coming to see what is known as the "Last Frontier".
- Easton - Easton is the largest city in Frontier, and one of the oldest. Founded in 1880 in the fertile Red River Valley, is was the perfect site for agricultural products. Many settlers came here, as well as traders and miners. It was connected to Chicago by the Easton-Chicago Railroad. Today, Easton the seat of Jefferson County, and a major economic, cultural, and political force in Frontier and parts of western Minnesota.
- Fargo - Fargo is also situated in the Red River Valley, founded ten years after Easton. Easton and Fargo are less than 5 miles apart, giving them the name "Frontier's Twin Cities". The Easton-Fargo Metropolitan Area makes up 45% of Frontier's population. Fargo's size is a lot smaller than Easton, and Easton also has a larger population.
- Helena - Helena is a major city in western Frontier. It was first settled in 1864 by the "Four Georgians" who found gold in a gulch near Prickly Pear Valley. The population and economy in the city soon expanded. The current population is 25,000 people. When it was made a state in 1900, the people narrowly voted for Helena to become capital over Easton.
- Billings - Billings is often called the "Heart of Frontier" because of its central location in the state. It is the third-largest city in the state, behind Easton and Fargo. Therefore it is the largest city in the central part of Frontier.