What do you call someone who is from Montana? We know that one, it's a "Montanan." It's a demonym - what you call someone who lives or hails from a particular area or region, like a state or a city.

Naming and classifying things is part of who we are as human beings - we like to make sense of the world and one of the best ways to do that is to categorize stuff. Think of it like cleaning a kid's messy bedroom; a big pile of clothes, toys, crafting supplies, stuffed animals, shoes, and charging cables. All that stuff has a place, and finding out that the toys go in the toy box is a great way to get started.

We wouldn't call toys "toy boxians" because they live there (well, depending on the kid, the toys may spend more time on the floor..."floorites"?) but when we come up with names for residents of a city or region there are a few general assumptions:

  • if the place name ends in "-a" then a resident is often called "-ian."
  • if the place name ends in a consonant, you can usually call a resident an "-ite."
  • if the place name ends with a vowel other than "a" more often than not its  "-an."

Of course, there's exceptions for every rule. You wouldn't call someone from Los Angeles a "Los Angelesite" right? It's more common to say "Los Angeleno" and for Montana residents there's exceptions too: there are some unusual names (Square Butte and Plentywood come to mind) but let's have some fun with Montana demonyms. This isn't definitive or official by any means, just my best guess:

Alberton - Albertonian

Arlee - Arleean

Billings - Billingsite

Bonner - Bonnerite

Bozeman - Bozemanite

Butte - Buttian

Corvallis - Corvallisian

Darby - Darbyite / Darbyan (?)

Deer Lodge - Deer Lodger

Dutton - Duttonian

Frenchtown - Frenchtonian

Florence - Florentine

Kalispell - Kalispellan / Kalispudlian

Lincoln - Lincolnite

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Lolo - Loloan

Medicine Lake - Medicine Laker

Missoula - Missoulian

Pablo - Pabloan

Polson - Polsonite

Phillipsburg - Phillipsburger

Red Lodge - Red Lodger

Ronan - Ronanite

Saint Ignatius - Saint Ignatian (?)

Seeley Lake - Seeley Laker

Stevensville - Stevensvillian (not Stevensvillain!)

Victor - Victorian (?)

Whitefish - Whitefisher

Can you think of any we missed, or want to correct us? Let us know in the comments!

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