Montana Preservation Month

This year, our preservation poster celebrates the 150 years since Montana achieved territorial status. President Abraham Lincoln designated Montana Territory on May 28, 1864, carving its lands from the existing Dakota and Idaho Territories. Bannack, now a state park, served as the first territorial capital, but Virginia City assumed that honor the following year. Still the Madison County seat, today Virginia City (a National Historic Landmark) stands as a vibrant community rich in culture and tradition. Wallace Street and the surrounding neighborhood offer visitors an authentic “Old West” experience, featuring some of the best-preserved territorial-period architecture in the state and the nation. 

The Montana Historical Society also will observe the anniversary with a special museum exhibit that acknowledges not only the Territory, but also our organization’s own 150th year in Montana’s Territorial Legacy: The Montana Historical Society. Opening May 22, 2014, the exhibit showcases the Society’s 150 years preserving Montana‘s past with a display of some of its special collections. The first Territorial Legislative Assembly established the Society in 1865, and the Territory and MHS grew up together. MHS is the oldest institution of its kind in the American West, and today attracts visitors and scholars from across the state, nation, and world. Please plan to make your visit to the Montana Historical Society in 2014-2015!  

To receive a free Montana Preservation Month poster please contact us at (406) 444-7715, or email us at