Two one-week workshops for eighty school teachers that connect the study of mines and mining in Montana to broad patterns in U. S. history.
This workshop addresses the contribution of western mining to the social and economic history of the United States through the study of the different types of mining in four Montana towns. Lectures and discussions address such topics as the technological processes of mining; capital and labor in the mining industry; the architecture and commercial life of Bannack, Virginia City, Helena, and Butte; African-American, Jewish, and Chinese communities; and relations with Native Americans in the region. Project co-directors Kirby Lambert (Montana Historical Society [MHS]) and Paula Petrik (history, George Mason University) are joined by Robert Swartout (history, Carroll College), Ken Egan (literature, Humanities Montana), Fredric Quivik (industrial heritage and archaeology, Michigan Technological University), Ray Breuninger (geology, University of Montana), Mary Murphy (history, Montana State University), Nicholas Vrooman (Native American history, University of Montana), independent filmmaker Pamela Roberts, and other local experts. Readings include selections from Montana: A History of Two Centuries (Michael Malone et al.) and Montana: Stories of the Land (Krys Holmes), as well as scholarly chapters and articles, several by workshop faculty Petrik, Murphy, and Vrooman. The participants also use primary sources from MHS, including documents, maps, and photographs, as they develop teaching units.