Filed Under Havre

Kiwanis Meeting Hall

After Custer’s defeat at the Battle of the Little Bighorn, the U.S. Army built eight new forts on the Northern Plains to solidify its control over the region. These included Fort Assiniboine, designated to guard the border from Sitting Bull’s followers, who had withdrawn to Canada after the Great Sioux War. When the Army closed Fort Assiniboine in 1911, 58,000 acres of fort land became part of Rocky Boy's Indian Reservation. Another 9,000 acres became Beaver Creek County Park—first called Assiniboine National Park, then Beaver Creek Playground. Before the county assumed management in 1953, the City of Havre oversaw the park. Without adequate funds for maintenance and development, it turned to the Havre Chamber of Commerce and the local Kiwanis Club for assistance. Under the supervision of local builder and active Kiwanis member Chris Fuglevand, volunteers constructed this log-and-frame meeting hall in 1933. Made of log slabs, assembled vertically to simulate a post-and-beam log cabin, the Rustic style lodge was part of Camp Kiwanis, “a camp for underprivileged children.” It was the first permanent building in the park. Characterized by the use of crudely worked native materials, the Rustic style reflected romanticism about nature and the western frontier. The style of choice for buildings associated with outdoor recreation, its intentional lack of sophistication made it well-suited for a project assembled by unskilled volunteers. The Kiwanis Club dedicated the building on June 23, 1933, with a celebratory dinner and dance. The first children attended camp a week later. In 1937, the Kiwanis converted the hall into a non-denominational chapel.

Images

Kiwanis Meeting Hall Kiwanis Meeting Hall. Front view of the building, facing northeast on Beaver Creek Road. Source: Montana State Historic Preservation Office Creator: Becki Miller Date: Apr. 2008
Kiwanis Meeting Hall Kiwanis Meeting Hall. Side view of the building, facing west to southwest near Beaver Creek Road. Source: Montana State Historic Preservation Office Creator: Becki Miller Date: Apr. 2008
Kiwanis Meeting Hall Kiwanis Meeting Hall. Side view of the building, facing east to northeast near Beaver Creek Road between the tree stand that grows on the west side of the building. Source: Montana State Historic Preservation Office Creator: Becki Miller Date: Apr. 2008
Kiwanis Meeting Hall Kiwanis Meeting Hall. Rear view of the building, facing southwest towards Beaver Creek Road in the thick of the tree stand to the northeast of the meeting hall. Source: Montana State Historic Preservation Office Creator: Becki Miller Date: Apr. 2008

Location

17863 Beaver Creek Road, Havre, Montana | Public

Metadata

The Montana National Register Sign Program, “Kiwanis Meeting Hall,” Historic Montana, accessed December 3, 2022, https://historicmt.org/items/show/660.