Fort William Henry Harrison occupies a swathe of land a few miles west of Helena
near Spring Meadow Lake
. From its establishment in May of 1892, Fort Harrison has had a storied history. An active Army post until 1913, it served as the muster site for Montanans sent to France during World War I and as a training site for National Guardsmen between the wars and after World War II. During World War II it served as the home base for the First Special Service Force, a joint US-Canadian light infantry brigade that gained infamy among its foes as the "Devil's Brigade." Today the fort houses the Montana National Guard's Joint Forces Headquarters, a VA hospital complex, and the Montana Military History Museum. The museum uses thousands of unique artifacts to chronicle the military history of Montana, from 1806 to the present.