M & M Cigar Store

Saloon and Eatery Operated Around the Clock

This beloved saloon and cafe, which operated in this spot since 1890, burned down in 2021.

Sam Martin and William F. Mosby were the first of many proprietors of the legendary saloon, eatery, and gambling house that operated here from 1890 until 2021. Although Martin and Mosby’s tenure was short, Butte’s love of nicknames endured and their initials remained on the M & M. For more than a century the M & M never rested, serving customers around the clock. The doors were always unlocked; each subsequent owner ceremoniously and publicly disposed of the keys. The M & M catered to miners coming off their shifts while the kitchen served bountiful breakfasts at any hour of the day or night. When Prohibition hit, the M & M followed other Butte bars, officially becoming a cigar store. Cigars sold in the front discreetly cloaked the speakeasy in the back room where the liquor continued to flow. The iconic building with its 1940s Art Deco ground-floor façade, spectacular neon sign, and the vintage 1890s upper level burned to the ground in 2021. The business moved next door and the neon sign, which was saved from the fire, will be reinstalled at the new location.

Images

M & M Cigar Store
M & M Cigar Store View of the interior of a cigar store in Butte, Montana. A group of about 15 men, most wearing hats, stand and sit around a glass counter holding cigars in boxes. Two incandescent electric lights hang from the ceiling. Many cigar boxes are stored in a large cabinet on the left. Source: PAc 946-095, Montana Historical Society Research Center Photograph Archives, Helena, MT. Creator: Unknown photographer Date: Between 1895 and 1910
M & M Cigar Store
M & M Cigar Store M & M Cigar Store, facing southwest, front view. Source: MontanaPictures.net Creator: MontanaPictures.net Date: June 2008
M & M Cigar Store
M & M Cigar Store M & M Cigar Store, facing west, front view at night. Source: MontanaPictures.net Creator: MontanaPictures.net Date: December 2005

Location

9 North Main Street, Butte, Montana | Pubic Business

Metadata

Montana Historical Society, “M & M Cigar Store,” Story of Butte, accessed April 17, 2024, https://storyofbutte.org/items/show/1967.