February 11, 2020

“Spilling the Stories: Overcoming Prohibitive Barriers”

March 26-28, 2020

Holiday Inn, Missoula, Montana.

Join us for our annual conference. Thursday has an array of workshops. Friday and Saturday are full of lectures and discussions. Attendees receive lunch and dinner. View the brochure here.

Conference Workshops and Tours
Grant Writing, Thursday, 8 am – 12 pm
Introduction to Managing Archives, Thursday, 8 am – 12 pm
The Impact of Social Media, Thursday, 1 pm – 4 pm
Working with Your Museum’s Historic Building(s), Thursday, 1 pm – 5 pm
Unseen Missoula Walking Tour, Thursday, 12:30 pm – 3:30 pm

Grant Opportunities

William pratt endowment fund

The William Pratt Endowment Fund is currently accepting grant applications until March 21, 2020. Grants will range from $500 to $1500.  
Please visit this link: https://www.mtcf.org/william-b-pratt-fund
Grant applicants may apply for one of the following fields of interest:  
1. Montana’s Indigenous, Traditional and Folk Arts
2. The Production of, Education About and Distribution/Presentation of Media Arts
3. Strengthening the Fields of the Indigenous, Traditional and Folk or Media Arts  
If you have questions, please feel free to email or call jessica@mtcf.org or (406) 441-4950. To learn more about what we do at Montana Community Foundation, visit www.mtcf.org.

Montana Historic Preservation Grant Program

Montana Department of Commerce Director Tara Rice is excited to share the Department is accepting applications for the Montana Historic Preservation Grant Program. The new grant program is designed to support the preservation of historical sites, societies and museums in Montana. 

“Preserving and promoting Montana’s histories and cultures gives a boost to our charming towns,” Commerce Director Rice said. “Out-of-state visitors and residents alike seek out authentic historical experiences. These grants will help our storied places continue to share stories of the past, giving visitors and residents a true glimpse of Montana’s fascinating, deep-rooted history.” 

Passed by the 2019 Montana Legislature and signed by Governor Steve Bullock, the Montana Historic Preservation Grant Program was created to help communities increase economic development, community revitalization and statewide tourism through added investment, job creation, business expansion and local tax-base growth. 

With awards of up to $500,000 for each eligible grant recipient, the funding will be used to improve historical sites, historical societies or history museums in Montana. These improvements may include infrastructure repair, building renovations, maintenance, building code issues, security enhancements and fire protection.

Eligible applicants for the program include incorporated nonprofit organizations, incorporated cities or towns, associations, counties and tribal governments. 

Historic sites will be considered eligible if it is either a structure or site that is listed on a national, state or local historic registry, a structure or site that contributes to a historic district or a structure that is more than 50 years old with documented historical significance to a Montana community or region.

In early February, Commerce will be posting an application webinar and an FAQ page to help ensure that applicants are able to navigate this new application process. The webinar will be recorded and posted on the Montana Historic Preservation Grant Program website and can be viewed at your convenience. Applications are due by February 28, 2020. Grant recipients will be determined by the Montana Legislature during the 2021 legislative session. For more information and how to apply visit COMDEV.MT.GOV.

News to Share

Registration for the Montana Preservation Road Show is Officially Open!

Early bird pricing is available through March 15. We strongly recommend that people book their hotel rooms early due to limited space.

At the Montana Preservation Alliance, we believe that learning about historic preservation means engaging with place-based history in new and challenging ways. This award winning, biennial touring conference encourages the stewardship of heritage sites by bringing people to the places where history actually happened. Participants will venture into the field to explore rural and off-the-beaten-path historic sites with renowned scholars, preservation leaders, and local historians.

To Register

Montana Outdoor Hall of Fame seeks nominees for 2020

Montana Outdoor Hall of Fame seeks nominees for 2020   Nominations for the 2020 Montana Outdoor Hall of Fame will be accepted through Feb. 29. The Hall of Fame was created to honor individuals, both living and dead, who made significant and lasting contributions to the restoration and conservation of Montana’s wildlife and wild places.  

The focus of the awards is not only to recognize Montana’s historical and contemporary conservation leaders, but also to provide public awareness of the stories of these individuals.  

Every two years, a diverse group of individuals is inducted into the Montana Outdoor Hall of Fame. Nominees do not have to be living nor do they have to be a resident of Montana, as long as they have spent some time in Montana and the impact to Montana was or is significant. Anyone can nominate a deserving person.  

The Montana Outdoor Hall of Fame board of directors makes the final selection based on the recommendations provided by a review committee comprised of a cross-section of Montana’s conservation and outdoor community. The inductees are honored during a banquet, which will be held Dec. 5 in Helena.  

The Montana Outdoor Hall of Fame is made possible through collaborative efforts from the Cinnabar Foundation, Montana’s Outdoor Legacy Foundation; Montana Historical Society; Montana Wildlife Federation; Montana Wilderness Association; Montana Trout Unlimited; and Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks.  

To learn more and to submit a nomination, visit mtoutdoorhalloffame.org or contact Thomas Baumeister at 406-431-4326

Libby Heritage museum Nominated for National Historic Register

The building that houses Libby’s Heritage Museum — a unique 12-sided log building constructed in the 1970s — has been nominated for inclusion on the National Register of Historic Places.
The 13,500-square-foot structure was built in 1975 by hundreds of local volunteers. The museum opened in 1978.
For more information, visit LibbyHeritageMuseum.org

Professional Development Opportunities

Montana’s Historic Preservation Grant Program Informational Webinar

The Montana Department of Commerce is happy to share a webinar for the Montana Historic Preservation Grant Program. During this webinar Community Development staff will walk you through the program’s guidelines, application process and frequently asked questions.
Grant Application Webinar

American Alliance of Museums Online Programs

Over 70 programs to choose from. Recorded webinars cover a range of topics, and offer an affordable, accessible and convenient online learning opportunity for you, your staff and your colleagues. Categories include the following:
Collections Stewardship
Education and Interpretation
Financial Sustainability
Marketing and Public Relations
Mission and Institutional Planning
Click here to view all available webinars and sign up

AASLH Resource Center

Upcoming Webinars:
Best Practices for Working with a Board of Directors – Feb. 20, 2020
How to Spot Opportunity When it is Disguised as Chaos – Mar. 25, 2020
Historic House Call: Mission – Apr. 23, 2020
Click here to sign up for webinars

Job Openings

Montana Historical Society

Historic Architecture Specialist

The Montana Historical Society seeks an energetic and talented person for the position of Historic Architecture Specialist with the State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO). If you have the passion to preserve our historic heritage and have strong skills in communication and organization, this position might be for you! Helena, Montana offers a high standard of living, and SHPO staff is collegial and supportive. We strive to maintain this positive office environment and foster a work/life balance.


Provide guidance based on the Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for the Treatment of Historic Properties to federal, state agencies, community historic preservation officer, and private property owners;

Consult with federal agencies, their permittees and grantees under Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act;

Consult with state agencies under the Montana State Antiquities Act;

Act as liaison between the National Park Service and private property owners applying for Federal Rehabilitation Tax Credits

Negotiate the terms of agreement documents associated with state and federal undertakings;

Evaluate properties for their National Register eligibility potential;

Review and comment on documents such as historic structures reports, property record forms, interpretive material, and feasibility studies;

Perform outreach to promote our office programs, and preservation;

Pursue independent projects that advance an understanding and appreciation of Montana cultural resources.


Experience working with the Secretary of the Interior Standards for the Treatment of Historic Properties. Emphasis is placed on this knowledge as it applies to the Northern Plains and Rocky Mountain Region and cold-weather climates.

The incumbent is critiquing, supplementing and advancing the work of professional peers. Hence his/her comments must stand up to in-depth professional scrutiny and may be subject to strong professional criticism.

Thorough knowledge of technical best-practices used to retain and repair historic architectural features.

Thorough knowledge of National Register of Historic Places criteria for evaluation.

Thorough knowledge of federal regulations outlined in 36 CFR part 800.

Ability to perform quick and appropriate review of architectural plans, reporting, and analyses; 

Skill in articulating the office recommendations and determinations, sometimes translating complex professional or regulatory ideas into language understandable to the public and non-preservationists.

Ability to negotiate difficult situations, to bring discussions and arguments to a productive conclusion.

Knowledge and understanding of public administration, public agency practices and functions, and the processes by which the public interacts with agencies.

Ability to organize and administer programs with complex and legally defined goals, professional standards, and public expectations.

Ability to interact with others cordially, effectively, and efficiently.

Education & Experience

The incumbent must have a master’s degree in historic preservation, a closely related field of study, or architecture degree and a minimum of two years full-time professional experience. Experience can include hands-on preservation work, construction project planning or management.

To apply for this position, you must complete and on-line application on the Montana Career Site, include a resume, cover letter and answers to the 3 supplemental questions:

http://statecareers.mt.gov/ [r20.rs6.net]

Supplemental questions (limit 750 words each):

  1. What guidance would you provide the owner of a National Register listed property whose plan for reducing a heating bill includes historic window replacement?
  3. Describe the relevance of SHPOs and the Section 106 process.
  4. Preservation advocates are challenging a developer who has produced an allegedly skewed engineering study to gain local government approval to demolish a landmark building. Advocates ask SHPO to take a stand against the developer. What would you do?

Closing date: March 1, 2020 Salary Range: $15.55 – $23.35

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Want to help? Buy us a drink! Donate the money that you would use to buy a coffee, beer or drink for one day to the Museums Association of Montana! All proceeds will go toward operating costs for this newsletter, the annual conference, National Advocacy Day, and the Helping Hands program for museums across the state. Support Montana’s Museums!

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