The Lyman-Neel Residence and its many occupants reflect the ever-changing character of the North Rodney Street neighborhood. Soon after Helena’s first county courthouse opened in 1867, merchants and professionals established Helena’s first…

In 1865, Montana’s territorial legislature passed its first conservation law, limiting the capture of trout to rod or pole. By 1901, Montana had eight deputy game wardens, which grew to twenty-four by 1917. Hunting and angling became increasingly…

After the federal government began to provide money to address widespread poverty during the Great Depression, Montana established the Department of Public Welfare, which supervised all forms of public assistance. In 1937, that department set up…

The 1982 Justice Building and Montana State Library, designed by Page-Werner and Partners of Great Falls, was the last building constructed under the ambitious 1972 Capitol Campus Master Plan. Designed to house the Supreme Court, Attorney General’s…

In 1879, Jennie Atchison (sister of Montana’s first governor, Joseph Toole) moved from Missouri to Helena with her husband Dr. J. B. Atchison. Dr. Atchison became a prominent Helena physician, active in state medical affairs and in Democratic and…

Since its completion in 1959, the Executive Residence has not only served as home for Montana’s first families, but also played an important part in the functioning of state government. It is the second such structure to fill that role. Initially,…

Following World War II, Montana’s growing state agencies desperately needed all types of space. Consequently, in 1946 the Montana State Postwar Planning and Construction Commission recommended building a laboratory where all testing for state…

Montana’s original Highway Department building reflects the ascendancy of the automobile in twentieth-century America. As drivers began lobbying for good roads, state government responded, forming the Montana Highway Commission in 1913. Five years…

Throughout the first half of the twentieth century, state government grew to meet the increasing demands of Montana’s citizenry. In 1945—following a hiatus wrought by the Great Depression and World War II—the legislature established a Montana…

Established by the state legislature in 1901, Montana’s Board of Health was originally housed in two small offices in the capitol building. As the state devoted more attention to public health during the Progressive Era, the Board’s responsibilities…