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Saturday, September 14 • 3:30pm - 5:00pm
Writing Montana History

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Four Montana history writers share their thoughts and experiences in bringing Montana’s past alive:
In Montanans in the Great War: Open Warfare Over There by Ken Robison

The Great War, World War I, continued with fury in the Spring of 1918. In a dramatic race against time, could American Yanks play the key role in stemming the German tide? Join Montanans as they engaged in their first major battle at Cantigny, a day to remember in history. Join Montana Marines in the bloodiest day in their history, as they became “Devil Dogs,” charging through hell on earth at Belleau Wood. Blunt the vital German surge toward Paris with Montana Yanks of the 3rd “Rock of the Marne” Division. Find yourself behind German lines with Montanans in the Lost Battalion facing death at every moment. Follow Montanans of the Wild West Division as they storm “over the top” into the Argonne Forest shouting “Powder River Let ‘Er Buck.” Serve with young Seaman Mike Mansfield, future legendary senator, on convoy duty against lurking German U-boats. Join adventurous Montana nurses, “hello girls,” Navy Yeomanettes, YMCA workers as they blazed new gender roles.

Open Warfare Over There is the story of young and vibrant Montanans of all ethnicities as they fought for elusive democracy at home in this world war to end all wars. Award-winning historian Ken Robison brings Montana’s men and women to life, at home and abroad, as they relate their stories of the Great War.

In Montana Horse Racing: A History Brenda Wahler brings together the social, political, and economic history in Montana's most ubiquitous pastimes: horse racing.  For centuries, on prairie grasslands, dusty streets and racing ovals, everyday Montanans participated in the sport of kings. More than a century after the Shohone brought horses to the region, Lewis and Clark's Nez Perce guides staged horse races at Traveler's Rest. In response to the hazardous street races of the territorial era, the Montana legislature granted communities authority to ban "immoderate riding or driving." Helena led the way to respectable racing, with the first territorial fair in 1868. Montana-born Spokane won the Kentucky Derby in 1889, challenging statehood itself as the top news story of the year. Soon, Marcus Daly built oval tracks and glitzy grandstands and in 1890, a horse named Bob Wade set a world record in Butte that stood until 1958. 20th-century horse racing rose and fell with changing times, and in the 21st century is an endangered sport, but with historic support from Native communities and other dedicated horsemen, horses still run under the Big Sky.

avatar for Brenda Wahler

Brenda Wahler

Brenda Wahler is a lifelong Montana horsewoman, an attorney, and a former history teacher. She has published freelance work since 1986, including magazine articles on horsemanship and horse history. Most recently, she traced the history of horse racing in Montana. Her book, Montana... Read More →
avatar for Ken Robison

Ken Robison

Historian, Overholser Historical Research Center
Ken is a historian, preservationist and a chronicler of neglected Montana history at the Overholser Historical Research Center in Fort Benton and the GreatFalls/Cascade County Historic Preservation Commission. Ken is an author of eight books, and his new book, Montanans in the Great... Read More →
avatar for Ednor Therriault

Ednor Therriault

Ednor is a writer, musician and graphic designer with deep Montana roots. His first book, Montana Curiosities, was published by Globe Pequot Press in 2010, and went on to become the best-selling title in the Curiosities series. The second edition was released in 2016 on Two Dot Press... Read More →
avatar for Brian D'Ambrosio

Brian D'Ambrosio

Brian D'Ambrosio is the author of five books and more than 200 articles related to Montana, including Warrior in the Ring (Riverbend Publishing, 2015), a biography of Indian Marvin Camel, a half-Flathead, half-black pinball mechanic who went from a Montana reservation to win world... Read More →

Saturday September 14, 2019 3:30pm - 5:00pm MDT
Missoula Public Library

Attendees (9)