NewsMissoula County


Milltown State Park event recalls historic timber industry

 Kim Briggeman presents at Milltown State Park
Posted at 7:03 PM, Sep 05, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-06 12:38:05-04

MISSOULA — What better time than Labor Day weekend to learn about a piece of Montana’s labor history?

The Bonner Milltown History Center and Museum worked in partnership with Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks (FWP) at Milltown State Park on Sunday for an event centered around the timber history of the area.

“It's a great day to come out, enjoy our natural surroundings and think back on some of the important buildings that our labor has produced for us over the years," Bonner Milltown History Center Co-Director Judy Matson told MTN News.

Here are the faces from the early days when people from all around the world worked in the woods and sawmills of Bonner and Milltown. Back then, the days were long and the work was difficult.

Historic Montana labor photo

In addition to photos and artifacts on display, traditional labor songs were led by Scott Chrichton along with stories and a discussion of the Wobbly “Massacre” led by Kim Briggeman at the event.

Learn more of the area’s timber past at the Bonner Milltown History Center, open a few days per week.

Matson said the center is dedicated to keeping the industry heritage in people’s thoughts - that history from the woods to the sawmills to the power-providing dams.

“There are lots of former mill workers who stop by to share memories, answer questions of any visitors that come in," explained Matson.