MHS encourages visitors to use research center - KXLH.com | Helena, Montana

MHS encourages visitors to use research center

Posted: Mar 03, 2018 5:53 PM Updated:

The research center at the Montana Historical Society houses hundreds of thousands of books, letters, photographs, maps, newspapers, legislative records, films, the list goes on and on.

MHS has collected documentation of Montana's history since 1865.

"The historical society, which has been around since the first territorial legislative session, has been collecting since then, Montana's stories," Reference Historian Zoe Ann Stoltz said.

For many people in the current digital age, the internet is often the first place to go for answers to questions.

But Stoltz said not so fast.

"They have been brainwashed into believing everything is online, when in reality very little is online especially when you start talking about primary documents, historical documents," Stoltz said. "Getting things online is incredibly expensive, time consuming process because you just don't take a picture. You have to have special software to make it searchable. There's no sense putting something online if you can't search it."

Stoltz added that online is a good place to start though as you'll get bits and pieces, but to get a broader picture, you'll want to visit the research center.

"You finish your research in your local library, your local museum, or at the Montana Historical Society Research Center," Stoltz said. "All you have to do is get on to our catalog and put in a topic and you're going to see what is available here on site."

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