Havre, MT for breakfast

Next morning we drove on into Havre and ate breakfast at 4Bs Restaurant on the main drag.  4B’s Restaurants, Inc. owns and operates restaurants in Montana and New Mexico.  The company, through its subsidiary, also packs and distributes beef and pork products.  4B’s Restaurants, Inc. was founded in 1947 and is based in Missoula so it is pretty much a mainstay in Montana towns.  They are famous for their Tomato Soup but since we had just had breakfast we had to pass this up.  But here is the recipe and it sounds yummy!

4 B’s Tomato Soup

Serves/Makes:   12

4 B's Tomato Soup Recipe photo by: Phandango Click image to view


32 ounces canned diced tomatoes

9 ounces chicken broth

1 ounce butter

2 tablespoons sugar

1 tablespoon chopped onion

1 pinch baking soda

2 cups cream


Mix together every thing but cream, and simmer 1 hour. Heat cream in double boiler, add cream to hot tomato mixture
Recipe Source: 4 B’s Restaurant in Havre, Montana

There is also had a Ford dealership in Havre so we picked up some DEF fluid for the truck.  According to locals, it is pronounced “Have her” as in you can have her, I don’t want her.  It is said to be named after Le Havre in France.  Founded in 1893, Havre with a population of 9310 is the eighth-largest city in Montana, and the largest city in the Montana section of the Hi-Line.  The Hi-Line is a geographical term referring to the portion of the northern United States south of the Canadian border along which runs the main line of the BNSF Railway and U.S. Highway 2.  With the nearest major city, Great Falls, about 120 miles to the south, Havre serves as a medical and business center for the Montana section of the Hi-Line.  U.S. Highway 87 has its northern terminus at Havre. U.S. Highway 2, running east-west, is the city’s main street.  The largest employers are Northern Montana Hospital, Montana State University – Northern, and the BNSF Railway. Throughout much of the twentieth century, BNSF was the most prominent employer in the city, but the rail company scaled back its workforce in Havre in the 1990s.  The Milk River (tributary of the Missouri River) runs through the town, and the Bear’s Paw Mountains can be seen to the south.

Small grids of purple colored glass squares can be seen in some of the sidewalks in the downtown area (on the north side of the city).  These are skylights for a sort of underground “mall” built in the city at least a hundred years ago.  Throughout its history, this underground area has been host to a brothel, a Chinese Laundromat, a saloon, a drugstore, at least three opium dens, and rooms used for smuggling alcohol during Prohibition.  When fire destroyed Havre’s business district in 1904, legitimate above-ground businesses joined the illicit businesses operating in the underground while the new brick buildings were built in the streets above.  At that time mostly Asians who had come to work on the railroad were found living and working below the streets.  The underground area, now designated “Havre Beneath the Streets”, currently operates as a small tourist attraction.  Since we did not go below here is a good link to see what is there at this time. http://gildartphoto.com/weblog/2011/09/19/underground-havre-brothels-opium-dens-reflect-on-relatively-recent-lifestyle There is also a Buffalo Jump located just north of town. This is where about 2,000 years ago the Indians drove the buffalo herds over the cliff. See this link for more info: http://www.buffalojump.org/  All that remains there is a 20 ft. pile of buffalo bones and some good displays. We did not have time to visit any of this area as we were heading east after breakfast.  Maybe next time!

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