butte public archives

Butte-Silver Bow Public Archives image from 1946

BUTTE – With everything from Evel Knievel’s high school memorabilia to genealogy records from the 1890s, the Butte-Silver Bow Public Archives have been providing people with Mining City history for the past 40 years.

Aubrey Jaap is an expert. And she says these archives are extremely unique.

or starters, none of the collections are purchased - Community members donate all of the artifacts. It allows people to preserve their family history and contribute to Montana historic records.

“We love that we let our people connect with our record,” she says. “I think it’s super special that the people of Butte can connect with their community in that way as well.”

The sharing extends to Facebook, where followers will see some of the best throwback Thursdays and flashback Fridays around. 

 And it’s the people behind the scenes who truly bring the history to life, like Larry Cyr. He works to identify people in old photos. He’s come across a local legend on occasion.

“I found one picture of a dance, probably a junior or senior prom, and the only person I can recognize by name is Bob Knievel.”

That’s right – Evel Knievel at a high school dance.

It’s unique items like this that bring people from as far away as Finland and Ireland to the heart of the Montana’s history.

The Butte-Silver Bow Public Archives… this week’s Montana Treasure.

The archives are free and open from 9-5 on weekdays. Right now, visitors can check out World War I and Spanish flu exhibits, which will be up through February.

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