A gazetteer is defined as "a geographical dictionary." Gazetteers typically list the names of towns, settlements, villages, districts, rivers, and mountains within a specified region. They may also provide geographical description, historical data, and biographical information about early residents. Gazetteers can be helpful for finding places that may or may not show up on a map. They are also useful for determining jurisdictions where records might be kept. For more information about gazetteers in general, see United States Gazetteers.
A helpful list of Montana place-names is:
- Northwestern Gazetteer, Minnesota, North and South Dakota and Montana Gazetteer and Business Directory. St. Paul, Minnesota: R. L. Polk & Company, 1914. FHL films 1321220-21.
Family History Library (FHL)
The Family History Library has national gazetteers that can help you locate place-names in Montana. If you need help finding where a town was located or determining the name of a place, contact one of the archives listed in the Montana "Archives and Libraries" section and request a search of their gazetteers.
- Merriam Webster's Collegiate Dictionary, 10th ed., "gazetteer."