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Big Sandy, Montana
Big Sandy, Montana.JPG
Location of BigSandy, Montana
Location of BigSandy, Montana
Country United States
State Montana
County Chouteau
 • Total 0.48 sq mi (1.24 km2)
 • Land 0.48 sq mi (1.24 km2)
 • Water 0.00 sq mi (0.00 km2)
2,700 ft (823 m)
 • Total 605
 • Density 1,260.42/sq mi (487.90/km2)
Time zone UTC-7 (Mountain (MST))
 • Summer (DST) UTC-6 (MDT)
ZIP code
Area code(s) 406
FIPS code 30-06250
GNIS feature ID 0768824

Big Sandy is a town in Chouteau County, Montana, United States. The population was 605 at the 2020 census. Big Bud 747, the largest farm tractor in the world, was located here from 1997 until 2009, and returned in 2020. The Lewis and Clark Trail, following U.S. Route 87, goes through Big Sandy and in 2011 the town was named in a list of "Most Livable Small Towns" by Montana Outdoors magazine. Big Sandy, Montana also was the home of Pearl Jam bassist Jeff Ament, who built Big Sandy a skatepark.


Big Sandy is located at 48°10′40″N 110°6′53″W / 48.17778°N 110.11472°W / 48.17778; -110.11472 (48.177872, -110.114630).

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 0.44 square miles (1.14 km2), all of it land.


According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, Big Sandy has a semi-arid climate, abbreviated "BSk" on climate maps.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1920 589
1930 633 7.5%
1940 596 −5.8%
1950 743 24.7%
1960 954 28.4%
1970 827 −13.3%
1980 835 1.0%
1990 740 −11.4%
2000 703 −5.0%
2010 598 −14.9%
2020 605 1.2%
U.S. Decennial Census

2010 census

As of the census of 2010, there were 598 people, 276 households, and 161 families residing in the town. The population density was 1,359.1 inhabitants per square mile (524.8/km2). There were 337 housing units at an average density of 765.9 per square mile (295.7/km2). The racial makeup of the town was 93.1% White, 0.2% African American, 2.8% Native American, 0.8% Asian, 0.7% Pacific Islander, 0.3% from other races, and 2.0% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.3% of the population.

There were 276 households, of which 25.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 43.1% were married couples living together, 10.9% had a female householder with no husband present, 4.3% had a male householder with no wife present, and 41.7% were non-families. 39.5% of all households were made up of individuals, and 15.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.12 and the average family size was 2.83.

The median age in the town was 47.5 years. 21.9% of residents were under the age of 18; 6.2% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 19.7% were from 25 to 44; 31.6% were from 45 to 64; and 20.6% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the town was 47.0% male and 53.0% female.


At one time the site of a saloon that served Missouri River freighters, the community of Big Sandy is named for nearby Big Sandy Creek. The town began in 1887 with the arrival of the St. Paul, Minneapolis & Manitoba Railway (later the Great Northern Railway). By early 1900, Cornelius J. McNamara and Thomas A. Marlow, owners of the McNamara Cattle Company, had opened the town’s first store. Homesteaders began arriving in Big Sandy in 1909, and an influx continued for a decade. Several stories explain the creek’s name. The most colorful involves a muleskinner, “Big Sandy” Lane, who arrived one day near the present townsite and, to his dismay, discovered the creek at flood stage. He cursed the uncooperative weather, his bad luck, and the flooded creek crossing so fluently that the offending stream dried up immediately and he was able to cross.


Big Sandy Public Schools educates students from kindergarten through 12th grade. Big Sandy High School serves the area. They are known as the Pioneers.

Choteau County Library, headquartered in Fort Benton, has a branch in Big Sandy.


Big Sandy Airport is a public use airport one mile south of Big Sandy.

Notable people

See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Big Sandy (Montana) para niños

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