Frequently Asked Questions

I can't find my property, but I know it's listed in the National Register? Why aren't all sites available online?

Historic Montana only contains information and photos for properties with National Register signs. Montana is home to thousands of properties listed individually in the National Register of Historic Places or contributing to a National Register historic district. As of 2020, historians in the MHS sign program have written more than 1700 signs. 

Who writes the stories/sign text?

Historians in the National Register Sign Program write the historical marker sign text which appears on this website and app as "stories." Information for each sign is taken from National Register of Historic Places nomination forms along with other primary research conducted by MHS historians when the sign is written. Each sign brings attention to the property's architectural significance (when applicable) while also featuring important historical and biographical information significant to the property. 

What research methods are used?

The sign texts are interpreted information based on research culled from the National Register of Historic Places nomination, and primary and secondary source materials. Links to the National Register nominations are available for most properties, located in the Related Resouces section below the sign text. For properties without links, visit the State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO). Other primary and secondary sources may include newspapers, city directories, books, diaries, manuscripts, etc. Staff members of the Outreach and Interpretation (O&I) program retain copies of this information for their records. 

Can I share my photos?

Yes. Thank you for your offer! If you are interested in contributing historic, recent past, or current photos of your property or a group of properties, please contact us at mhsdigital@mt.gov.

Why do some sites direct to the local town?

Some National Register nominations requested restrictions on access and publication. We chose to indicate the closest town in order to share regional information, but limit access to these sites.

What do the colors and symbols on the online map mean, where is the key?

The Historic Montana map uses density-based clustering to visualize marker density at various zoom levels. This keeps viewers from being overwhelmed by dozens of stacked pins. As you zoom in, the clusters disperse and you see only the pins, as you zoom out, the markers continue to cluster until you eventually see a single cluster with the total number of stories on Historic Montana.

At less than 100 pins the cluster is yellow, under 10 pins the cluster is green. Pins with stars indicate featured stories.

This feature is only available on historicmt.org, it is not available on the Historic Montana app.

Where should I report misinformation?

Misinformation happens. We are well aware of this and we do not want to contribute to it. Please secure documentation which shows the correct information and share this with the Historic Montana team at mhsdigital@mt.gov.