The Square Butte Jail Still Stands

I wouldn’t say the Square Butte jail is going to lock anyone up these days but you can tell it was built to last! On a group tour of the area I was able to “stand behind the bars” of this iconic structure. Way back, think about 1913, the Milwaukee Land Company (yes, the same as the railroad), laid out the streets of the little town of Square Butte. The town was located on the … Read more

Historic Planes – Warbirds Over Great Falls

Think back to 1942. The US was supplying the Soviets with aircraft as part of a strategy to defeat Germany during World War II. The Lend Lease Act (1941) which authorized the plane transfer was actually passed by Congress before the US entered the war, although it was after the attack on Pearl Harbor. The group that flew the planes from Great Falls to Russia was called the 7th Ferrying Group. I had heard of … Read more

It Was A Weekend of Lewis & Clark History

Great Falls hosts the annual Lewis & Clark Festival the third weekend in June each year. Gibson Park (named after the founder of Great Falls) was a perfect location for the festival – lots of shade trees, grass, a bandshell for performers and plenty of room to spread out a variety of activities. The weather this year was perfect – plenty of sunshine but not too hot. I took in the opening ceremonies where the … Read more

Following the EarthCache Trail on the Upper Missouri River

When the Bureau of Land Management’s Missouri Breaks Interpretive Center in Fort Benton, Montana came up with the idea of earthcaching I wasn’t quite sure what it was. I had heard of “geocaching”, hadn’t ever tried it, but at least that term was familiar. Earthcaching was something new for me. I planned to do some studying on earthcaching before I tried doing it but that just didn’t happen. However, the BLM had some nice handouts explaining it. … Read more

The Wall That Heals

Last night I didn’t go to the opening ceremony of The Wall That Heals for a reason – I figured there would be a crowd and I wanted some alone-time at the wall. About 9am this morning I drove to Elks Riverside Park in Great Falls and was rather surprised to see quite a few cars already there. Although, I wouldn’t say it was crowded. Great Falls, Montana is a military town with many retirees … Read more

Intrigued by Fort Assinniboine near Havre

Fort Assinniboine is located about six miles from Havre on US Hwy 87. Ask a few Montanans if they know about it and you would probably get a mix of comments. The fort sits just a bit off the highway and if you aren’t watching for it you could easily pass it by – until now. Supporters of Fort Assinniboine have recently put up a new, brightly colored sign directing folks where to turn. I’ve been fortunate to tour Fort … Read more

War Horse Natl Wildlife Refuge. A True Gem Near Winnett

I have known about War Horse National Wildlife Refuge for quite awhile. But, it’s taken me quite awhile to get there and enjoy it! Finally, an opportunity to be near Winnett happened and I told several people I was definitely planning on visiting War Horse. I was driving east on MT Hwy 200 and looking for some type of sign that said to turn to go to the refuge. Information on U. S. Fish & … Read more

Fort Benton’s Museums Open for the Season

Last Friday evening I drove to Fort Benton for their annual “firing of the cannon” to signal opening day for the community’s museums. I was a bit late after scrambling through the work day but the drive was gorgeous and I gradually began to wind down by time I took the turn in to Fort Benton. The opening party was held at the Old Fort – a rebuilt version of the original fort that began this … Read more

Beautiful Renovation at Celtic Cowboy

When I first heard talk about renovation of the Arvon Block I didn’t even know where it was. Well, time for my education, it’s in downtown Great Falls on a street I drive every day on my way to the post office. I began to see lots of construction trucks parked at the site and was eager to see the finished product. An anticipated opening was delayed a bit by slow delivery of supplies but … Read more

A Solemn Experience at Bear Paw Battlefield

This past Saturday, October 5, was the 136th anniversary of the surrender of Chief Joseph’s Nez Perce people at Bear Paw Battlefield south of Chinook, MT. Every year several members from the Nez Perce tribe, National Park Service, and some nearby coordinators at Fort Belknap Indian Reservation organize a ceremony at the battlefield on the Saturday nearest to the October 5 date. I wasn’t able to attend that ceremony this year but I was able to get to … Read more