"Reflections from the Past; Looking to the Future"


This site is under construction

The Museum of Women's History reflects the lives of women past and present.  It is a museum of ALL ages, for the ages.  Exhibits feature women from all walks of life, all professions, all ethnic groups and perspectives locally and internationally.  There's always something new at the museum! Don't miss the monthly exhibits and window displays.

Our Mission

To establish a museum for the preservation of women’s history;  To provide for study and research activities and for the dissemination of information about women’s history;  To facilitate the understanding of historical processes and events from the perspective of women; and To accept and display artifacts which depict or illustrate the evolution of women’s history.


Women’s Suffrage Movement

100 years in Montana

Montana women received the right to vote in 1914, six years before the passage of the 19th amendment, which guaranteed women’s suffrage nationwide.  The victory was the result of a sophisticated organizing campaign.  Jeannette Rankin is Montana’s most famous suffragist, but the movement involved hundreds of women across the state.  Among them was Belle Fligelman Winestine of Helena (served as Rankin’s congressional assistant & helped organize the Montana League of Women Voters), Margaret Smith Hathaway of Stevensville (traveled over 5,700 miles promoting the cause earning the nickname “the whirlwind”), Emma Ingolls (voted to the state legislature in 1916), May Trumper (1916 Superintendent of Public Instruction) and Hazel Hunkins-Hallinan (graduated from Billings Senior High & protested on the national level & was exposed to locals via the national press) to name a few.

Kevin Kooistra gives a short talk about Hazel on the ‘Women’s History Matters’ website.  Check it out at http://montanawomenshistory.org/suffrage . This site was introduced in January of this year to look inclusively at women’s history in Montana. Women’s topics & individuals are highlighted twice weekly.

Kevin will be giving a presentation on the Suffrage Movement at 6:30 on November 3, 2014 at the Western Heritage Center. A member of MOWH, Judy Senteney, will be portrayed as Jeannette Rankin at this event. 

“Work in a store, where her back aches inhumanly,
Doesn’t unsex her at all, you will note,
But think how exceedingly rough and unwomanly,
Woman would be if she happened to vote.”

Berton Brayley’s untitled poem, published in the Suffrage Daily News (Helena) 9/25/1914

Did you know…?

“Suffragette” was a derogatory term made up by the press & those who opposed the movement.  The preferred term was “SUFFRAGIST”!

 The colors worn by the ladies of the cause were purple, yellow & white.  

The symbol was the Sunflower.

Native American women had to wait until the passage of the 1924 Indian Citizenship Act, to gain access to the ballot.

Woman of the Quarter

Agnes Morgan

“Annie” came West in 1880 as a servant in Dakota Territory for Capt Moylan. She cooked for Gen Custer. In the 1890’s she filed a claim in the Phillipsburg, MT area. In 1894, she rescued Joseph Cash when he fell into her creek due to illness from TB. When he recovered, he hired on to help with the many chores of a homestead. They developed a mutual affection, but laws prevented marriage.  Annie’s cabin was restored by the Forest Service & is on the National Register of Historic Places. This true story is recalled in the book, “Anne”, From Slavery to a Montana Homestead, by Lenore McKelvey Puhek.

Volunteer Opportunity

 Do you like to scrapbook? How about sorting through photos and/or library books? Data input maybe?  Ask a board member:

Brenda Eichele, Betty Klimper, Judy Senteney, Charmaine Mansheim, Mary Ladas , Bernie Wahl

Call Bernie @ 672-2513 or Brenda @ 670-0404

Web: www.museumofwomenshistory.org  or  email: museumofwomenshistory@charter.net

Scrapbooks are fun.

The Wise Old Owl

by EH Richards

 A wise old owl sat on an oak,

The more he saw the less he spoke,

The less he spoke the more he heard,

Why aren’t we like that wise old bird?

 * * * * * * * * * * * * *

A truly happy person is one who can enjoy the scenery on a detour.

All Optimum email addresses HAVE now changed to “Charter”, so the museum’s email address is now museumofwomenshistory@charter.net  

Greg Lamont and Emily Nance from KULR-TV, Channel 8 was given a tour of the Museum of Women’s History by Brenda Eichele, which was broadcast on Greg’s Sunday Roundtable on February 2, 2014. SEE THE TOUR HERE.

Growing up on a farm near Billings, Montana, Chani Nava loved the night sky but never dreamed she’d delve into its physical heart. Today she’s part of the Minerva Telescope Project, a collaboration between the University of Montana, Harvard, and other schools here and abroad. She explains Minerva and also why astrophysics stirs her passions. She also tells what she learned summer 2013 on Nantucket Island (Massachusetts) following in the footsteps of America’s first noted female astronomer and feminist, Maria Mitchell. After the talk with Nava, more about Mitchell, plus a spotlight on 4th-century Chinese woman poet Su Hui, author of the visual poem, “Star Gauge.”

Listen to the Montana Public Radio interview HERE.





We are now in the Lower Level of the Behner Building @ 2822 Third Avenue North LL 4
Billings, MT 59101
& continue to preserve, consolidate & reorganize!

WHEN are we open?

The Museum is now open by appointment only.

Appointments can be made by calling (406) 248-2015, (406) 672-2513 or (406) 670-0404.

If we are in & about when you stop by, we will be happy to share our special little “corner of the world” with you.

The Museum of Women's History is open to everyone.

Currently there is no entrance fee, but donations are greatly appreciated!

Museum of Women's History
2822 Third Avenue North LL 4
Billings, MT 59101
   (406) 248-2015