Montana Study research collection, 1943-1954

Montana Study


3.5 linear ft.
A composite research collection consisting of photocopies from various institutions and private collections -- Records include correspondence of Baker Brownell, Bert Hansen, Ruth Robinson, Joseph Kinsey Howard, the Rockefeller Foundation, the University of Montana, and others concerned with the project. There are reports from each of the small town study groups, conference materials, speeches and writings by project directors, and employee and financial records. Montana towns represented include Arlee, Conrad, Darby, Dixon, Hamilton, Lewistown, Libby, Lonepine, Stevensville, Troy, Victor, and Woodman.
The Montana Study was a project conducted by the University of Montana with funds provided by the Rockefeller Foundation. The project was conceived by Ernest O. Melby, Chancellor of the University of Montana System. He believed that by creating a common awareness of Montana's heritage, the people of the state would develop a deeper devotion to the welfare of the community, state, and country. In the early 1940s, Montana State College in Bozeman conducted a Rockefeller Foundation-funded project entitled "Northern Plains in a World of Change." At a meeting in Bozeman, Chancellor Melby met David H. Stevens of the Rockefeller Foundation. They worked together to create the Montana Study. Meiby and Stevens consulted Baker Brownell of Northwestern University, a noted authority on problems of rural life. They created a project that would focus the University on problems of rural life and find ways of stabilizing the family and the small community. Melby resigned as Chancellor in 1944, became the president of Montana State University in Missoula, and directed the Montana Study. He hired Baker Brownell as project director. Brownell was assisted by Paul Meadows, a sociologist from Northwestern University, and Joseph Kinsey Howard, an author from Great Falls. The study lasted until 1947 with meetings in many small Montana towns.
Positive photocopies of a Montana Historical Society collection.
Finding aid in the repository.

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