Time Capsules

Time capsules. That is what our collections are. They show how Butte has changed, and they show how the Archives has changed.  Over time, as we try to make our collections more available and useful, we change the way we arrange and catalog them and the way we store them.

In 2007, we decided that separating photographs from other items that people donate would make them easier to find.  However, the photographs that were in collections we received before that time (some in the early 1980s, which Clark Grant, of KBMF radio 102.5 FM, recently reminded me was a long time ago) are still housed in collections that were inventoried before the Archives had computers and cataloging software.

Because of a grant from the Montana History Foundation, we have begun an inventory of those photographs.  As a result, in the past few weeks, we have been able to do things like “walk” the halls of Butte High School in the 1950s and 60s through photographs donated by Jerome Shannon.


We have “witnessed” the semi-annual poker party of the Butte Press Club (even though this photograph says “no women”).  The Butte Press Club collection contains three decks of playing cards, one of which has a note attached informing the user that “Jack of Spades missing—can substitute Joker.” The collection also contains a box of poker chips and “Press Club House Rules for Poker” printed on Butte Press Club stationery.  I imagine that the rules were printed and distributed after many “discussions” of what the rules of the game should be.                      Butte Press ClubWe were also able to “meet” Colonel Brady of Sutherland’s Buffet.  He seems to have always been prepared for Halloween.  He even made it into the Anaconda Standard.  By the way, Colonel Brady may be a guest contributor to this blog from time to time.

Anaconda Standard June 21, 1908
      Anaconda Standard June 21, 1908


Many, many thanks to the Montana History Foundation for making this possible!



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