Special Exhibits

Northeast Gallery

Big Game, Big Stories: Montana's Hunting Heritage

Over thousands of years, hunting sustained the people of Montana physically, culturally, and spiritually. Many stories are a part of Montana's hunting heritage - from first peoples' nomadic hunting lifestyle to market hunters' decimation of game to hunters' conservation efforts. But the stories that connect people to the land and wildlife remain at the heart of Montana's hunting heritage. This exhibition explores some of these stories, but not all. We invite you to reflect on how your experiences with or thoughts on hunting may be similar to or different from others - now or in the past.





Hooked: Fishing in Montana

fishing invite

Anglers around the state and country are hooked on fishing in Montana waters! Montana offers beautiful outdoor settings with abundant variety of fish. Fishing has brought and continues to bring families, friends, and communities together on and off the water. We will also highlight how Montanans, including the state's Fish Wildlife and Parks agency, preserve the state waters to ensure that these fishing adventures can continue. Through art and artifacts from the Montana Historical Society and loans from the Maclean family and others, the exhibit will explore tribal lifeways and knowledge; family ties and communities around fishing; as well as the art and craft of tools, flies, and canoes.






Montana Tannenbaum

Montana Tannenbaum touches on Montana’s three national Christmas Trees – In 1958 the National Christmas Tree, an Engelmann Spruce also known as “Ike’s Tree,” harvested from the Kootenai National Forest near Libby, MT.  A second Engelmann Spruce was cut from the Kootenai National Forest near Libby in 1989 to serve as the Capitol Christmas Tree, and a Subalpine Fir Capitol Christmas Tree was harvested from the Bitterroot National Forest near Hamilton, MT in 2008.  The tradition of state’s providing Christmas Trees to Washington D.C dates from 1923 for the National Christmas Tree, and the Capitol Christmas Tree, or “The People’s Tree,” began in 1964.