Many are familiar with the Mullan Road; the road that traverses the expanse from Walla Walla, Washington to Fort Benton, Montana.
Missoulians, for instance, routinely use Mullan to access their homes, or shopping or dining on Reserve Street. The Missoula County Detention Center's located there, as well.
But perhaps you've never given a second thought to the road's namesake, its origin, or the impacts it's had on the region.
A group of history enthusiasts is devoting this weekend to do just that.
The 2014 Mullan Road Conference starts this Friday in Missoula.
Longtime Missoulian newspaper reporter, Kim Briggeman, is helping organize the event. In this evening's feature interview with Edward O'Brien, Briggeman tells us more about the road's importance. He begins by explaining his underlying interest in it and history in general: