Founded in 1865, when Montana was still a Territory, the Montana Historical Society’s mission is to preserve for future generations the Treasure State’s historical resources – from artworks and artifacts to journals and correspondence, to vehicles, buildings and sites. Since 1953 the public face of that effort has been Montana’s Museum, housed in the historic Veterans and Pioneers Memorial Building on the state capitol campus in Helena.
Now, Main Street is working closely with MHS on a fundamental transformation of that facility. A handsome new wing will more than double the museum’s gallery space while preserving and honoring the existing historic structure. New public gathering, café, and retail spaces will be animated with interpretive displays, and the museum experience will extend outdoors onto a forecourt and trails that celebrate the state’s ecoregions and iconic landforms.
The core 15,500sf Montana Homeland exhibition will be a celebration of the state’s rich history and heritage as expressed in its material culture: objects, artifacts, and environments drawn from all eras, regions, and cultures. A stated objective of this project is to make the Society’s remarkable collections resources dramatically more visible.