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State History Magazine Turns 60: A Montana success story



Montana The Magazine of Western History, published by the Montana Historical Society, is celebrating 60 years in print. The magazine’s nativity dates to April 1950 when the MHS Board of Trustees decided that a “living magazine” ought to be published. With its first issue in 1951, the magazine carried the motto “to preserve, to publish, and to promote interest in the history of Montana.”
Today the magazine circulates to nearly 10,000 MHS members and newsstands customers. Each Montana issue contains 4 to 6 full-length articles, book reviews, and a small dose of advertising. The often rare photographs, art, and maps used for illustration come from both public and private collections. Articles are peer reviewed to ensure accuracy, and the magazine is used around the world by educators, authors, filmmakers, genealogists, and researchers in almost every field imaginable.

The magazine staff is always looking for ways to make Montana more accessible. The MHS web site offers a free searchable index online, and the magazine is available at hundreds of libraries and throughout the world on JSTOR.
With a growing list of awards from such organizations as the Mountain-Plains Museums Association, National Cowboy Museum and Western Heritage Center, Western Writers of America, Westerners International, Wild West History Association, Forest History Society, Army History Foundation, Wyoming Historical Society, and Envirotech, the magazine’s success would surely make the founding board members proud.

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