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Billings is the largest city in the state of Montana. It is is the main city of the Billings Metropolitan Area, which is the largest metropolitan area in over 500 miles. It is the county seat of Yellowstone County, and its population at the 2010 census was 104,170. The city has been seeing robust growth, and has also avoided the economic slowdown that has affected the rest of the country. The city is named after Frederick H. Billings. He was a former president of the Northern Pacific Railroad.
With the Bakken oil play in eastern Montana and western North Dakota, the largest oil discovery in the country's history, as well as the Heath shale oil play just north of Billings, the city's already rapid growth rate is expected to escalate. Billings is a major trading center for most of the state. Retail is also prominent here. Having more hotel accommodations than any area within a five state region, the city hosts a variety of events.
A number of prehistoric artifacts have been discovered at this site, dating 2,100 years ago. The town was settled as a railroad town, which grew exponentially.
Currently, Billings trade area is geographically one of the largest trade areas in the United States, and it serves over half a million people. Fortune Small Business magazine named Billings the best small city in which to start a business, in the year 2009. The metro area is also has 3 oil refineries, a sugar beet refining plant, a coal fire generation plant, commercial and residential construction, building materials mfg and distribution, professional services, financial services, and many more establishments. Notable companies with headquarters here include Stillwater Mining Company, Kampgrounds of America, First Interstate Bank, Computers Unlimited, Tire-Rama, Western Plains Machinery, Tractor & Equipment Co., Bresnan Communications, Corporate Air, Employee Benefits Management Services, Edwards Jet Service, Waggoners Trucking, Meadowlark Agency, Ryan Restaurant Corp. etc.
Tourist attractions located in the city include the Yellowstone Art Museum, Moss Mansion Historic House Museum, the Western Heritage Center, the Billings Depot, and Skypoint.
The population predominantly comprises White Americans. A significant percentage of the population comprises people of Hispanic origin, and Native Americans.