Press Releases

News of Interest to Heritage Reporters and Teachers

Society’s March Women’s History Lectures Offer Powerful Topics and Speakers

The Friends of the Montana Historical Society are offering a good reason to get out in March and meet some interesting people.
The March Lecture Series will be held every Wednesday at noon at the Society with five great topics lined up to take a look at the important role of women in the development of the state.
“We have some great people lined up to talk about everything from politics, to authors, to Native American art. This series really does feature something for just about everyone,? Society Volunteer Coordinator Delight Sullivan said.
Tickets are $5 per lecture or a package of all five tickets for $20 with all proceeds going to the Friends of the Montana Historical Society who support the Society in countless ways and expand its ability to serve the public. For more information contact Sullivan at 406-444-9553.
Here are the dates and programs for the series:

March 2, Life as a First Lady Betty Babcock, who served as Montana’s first lady from 1962 to 1969 and remains one of the most popular and active political figures in Montana, will share stories from her time in the Governor’s Mansion.

March 9, Con-Con Conversation Diane Sands, who is one of the foremost experts on the development of the state’s 1972 Constitutional Convention, will talk about the contribution of women to the creation of the document.

March 16, Dorothy M. Johnson MSU-Billings English Professor Sue Hart will talk about the works and history of one of Montana?s most famous authors and journalists. This same day at 3 p.m. Johnson will be inducted into the Capitol’s Outstanding Gallery of Montanans in ceremonies featuring Gov. Brian Schweitzer.

March 23, Native American Womens Art Noted Blackfeet artist and member of the Montana Arts Council Jackie Parsons will talk about the historic and contemporary roles of Native American women in the art world of Montana.

March 30, Reading Between the Lines Montana Historical Society Archivist and Oral Historian Jodie Foley will present and talk about the rich collection of women’s diaries and reminiscences dating back to the early years of the Montana Territory.

Posted by Marcella Sherfy on 02/19 at 10:02 AM
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2005 Montana Heritage Project

Heritage Project featured at Core of Discovery

The Montana Heritage Project is featured on the website for the at NCTE Northwest Regional Conference which will be held in Lewiston, Idahao, March 16-19.

Several heritage projects will do presentations:

10:00 Writing the West: Beverly Chin, Jeanette Ingold, and Project teacher Christa Umphrey, Voices from 1910: Discovering Jeanette Ingold’s The Big Burn and the Fire that Changed the West.

11:15 Coyote in the Classroom: Darlene Beck and Julie Diehl, Piecing Together Our Community’s Past: Engaging English Students in the Fabric of Community and Communication

2:00 Coyote in the Classroom: Mary Sullivan, Hometown Heroes

3:00 Coyote in the Classroom: Dorothea M. Susag, The Beginnings of Oral History—Purpose, Procedure, Etiquette and Skills

4:00 Coyote in the Classroom: D. Beth Beaulieu, Local Heritage/Multi-genre Research Project for the English Classroom


10:00 Coyote in the Classroom: Nancy Widdicombe, Using Student Voices to Build Community

Posted by Michael L Umphrey on 01/31 at 11:21 AM
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2005 Montana Heritage Project

Steering Committee Formed for New Historical Society History Center

Former First Lady Betty Babcock and former state attorney general and veteran legislator Joe Mazurek have agreed to co-chair the Montana History Center Steering Committee that is bringing people from across the state together in support of a new facility for the Montana Historical Society, Montana History Foundation Director Amy Sullivan said Friday.
“I have a passion for history as many Montanans do,? Babcock said. “The things our forefathers provided for us in the past must be saved and passed on to future generations. This new History Center will do that.?
Both Babcock and Mazurek said that the new History Center is a non-partisan venture that will help bring all Montanans together over the things they share as one people.
“I know with our own children we taught them the importance of our history as Montanans, and this land’s glorious and remarkable past,? Mazurek said. “History helps us be aware of and understand our different cultures and all that we share together.?
The Legislature will consider a proposal to acquire the current Capitol Hill Mall that has 250,000 sq. ft. of space on 13 acres of land that is a five-minute walk from the Capitol Building. This is an ideal location for the History Center.
Because of its interior design, the space is flexible and can be readily converted to museum exhibit space, research facilities, archive and artifact storage as well as classrooms, an auditorium and other public space.
“Our Montana collection of art, artifacts and research materials are the envy of the West, and this facility has the potential to meet long term goals and promote caring for and interpreting our history,? Montana Historical Society Director Arnold Olsen said.
Since there is limited land and parking availability in the Capitol Complex for a new History Center, Olsen said that the mall property presents a unique opportunity nearby.
“It reassures us that this effort is important with people like Betty Babcock and Joe Mazurek stepping forward to help get the job done,? Olsen said.
Babcock said using the existing property makes good economic sense because it would be cheaper than building a new facility and that the current Society building across from the Capitol could be used for other state office space. The present Society building is at capacity, she said.
“This allows us to work together as Montanans for an important cause such as having more room for showcasing the new, very valuable and popular Robert Scriver collection,? Babcock said.
“This is maybe a once in a generation opportunity to secure a property that will allow us to better display and show off the wonderful artifacts and art work that people from all across Montana have contributed over the years,? Mazurek said.
Both leaders agreed that the History Center would become an important focal point for the history and heritage of the entire state.
“Think of the thousands of school children who would come to it from across the state and learn how wonderful it is to be able to call yourself a Montanan,? Babcock said.
Olsen said the opportunity to consolidate into one complex will be more efficient for the Society and Montana citizens who use the museum, research center and other public programs and services.
“It also will be a very important economic development issue for tourism for the whole state as well,? Mazurek said. “History and art bring people to this state as well as our natural resources.?
The Legislature and the governor will decide the fate of this important project over the next few months, Sullivan said. The present owners have said that they must make a decision on the property soon.
The Montana History Foundation stands ready to seek support for the project from the people of Montana, Sullivan said.
“But it is critical to the success of the private fund raising efforts that we get a firm commitment that the project has the support of the state,? she said.
The steering committee urges people who support the project to contact their legislators to encourage their support, she said.

Posted by Marcella Sherfy on 01/29 at 11:43 AM
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2005 Montana Heritage Project
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