Fort Benton’s Ag Museum (technically called the State of Montana’s Museum of the Northern Great Plains) is truly a step back in time. During a visit to the museum you will travel in time from 1908 through 1980 – three generations of farming in Central Montana.
The building is massive (30,000 square feet) and, if you are planning a stop in Fort Benton while on a Montana vacation, my advice is to allow plenty of time.
I’ve been to the Ag Museum many times and each time I’m there it seems like something new (actually old!) has been added.
As you walk through the building you go from one era in agriculture to the next. It’s amazing to see some of the old-time equipment which seems cumbersome now.
This photo shows a beautifully restored steam-powered tractor.
In addition to farming equipment, the museum also gives visitors a glimpse of home life during these times. Displays of kitchens on the farm, clothing worn, and automobiles are shown.
This old truck was part of a depression-era exhibit, complete with tumbleweeds. Times were tough and many farmers simply walked away from their acreage and looked elsewhere for work.
There is more! Part of the Ag Museum is actually outside where you can see a re-created village. Lots to see! Plan enough time to enjoy it all.