Montana lost a piece of her history Sunday morning, February 12, 2023, when the Historic Graves Hotel in Harlowton caught on fire.

The History of the Graves Hotel

In 1908, Chris Graves, now known as the "Father of Harlowton" broke ground on the Graves Hotel about a year after a fire ran through the downtown.   It was the first sandstone structure built in Harlowton. Just over  a year after it was announced, the Graves hotel opened.  From their website, when the hotel first opened, it had "45 rooms with electricity, heating, and plumbing and was wired for 150 electrical lights" and even a telephone system.  For 1909, this was pretty modern.  It has been on the register for National Historic Places since 1980.

What We Know So Far

Reports started coming in of a fire downtown before 6 a.m. on Sunday.  Firemen and firetrucks were on the move immediately with multiple fire departments answering the call.  Unfortunately for everyone, the building is a total loss.

No one is sure how the fire started yet, but it's believed it could have been in the dining hall.  At the time of the fire, there were 4 tenants in the building and everyone got out safely, much to the relief of the town.

There's So Much Unknown

With the fire just barely out, there are many unanswered questions regarding the fire.

The fire is an unfathomable loss for Harlowton and it's residents.  As for Montana history, it will never be the same.

Watch the report from KTVQ here


See Pictures Of The Fire Here

Graves Hotel Fire, Harlowton Montana

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