Upper Swan Valley Historical Society
Swan Valley Museum sign

Uno Strom and John Kolemainen.
​Strom Collection

Carl and Martha Jacobson with father Jacob Jacobson
Dick Peltier & Chuck Samuelson with trout near Turquoise Lake

Selish-Ql'ispe Place Names Map

Swan Peak, mountain in Swan Valley, Montana

Wineglass Mill. Cabins in background. No date. Wolff Collection.

Leonard Moore
The Gathering Place book cover

Tour of the Arts Highlights

Dec. 4 Frostbite Festival
CANCELLED due to Covid-19 concerns

Upper Swan Valley Historical Society July 2021 Newsletter

Jim Lookout, 1950s.
​Van Gieson Collection.

Swan Valley Museum cabins
Swan Valley Family Trees
Watercolor of Swan Valley's Gordon Ranch
National Geographic Map Guide Destination

The Gathering Place: Swan Valley’s Gordon Ranch

Jane Bassett, Babe Wilhelm, and Jack Johnson. Early 1930s. Wolff Collection.

Maki cabin
Elk Lake area
Holland Lake, 1939. Kids and adult in canoe
Ethel and Alice Brunson at homestead cabin

Maki Cabin at Swan Valley Museum!
See Projects

Explore Montana logo

Travelers can take a self-guided tour of the Swan Valley Museum, Swan River Tavern, Whalen Homestead Cabin, Smith Creek School replica and the portable sawmill on the Swan Valley museum grounds by downloading a free Explore MontanaTM app to access photos, audio, video and written descriptions. The self-guided tour is funded by Preserve Montana.


Search for Explore Montana on the App Store or Google Play and download.

Swan Valley Place Names map

Upper Swan Valley Oral History Project audio transcripts online

The Selish-Ql'ispe Culture Committee provided a Swan Valley Place Names Map for display in the Swan Valley Museum. The map features the Pend d'Oreille Indian names of the landmarks, as well as photos and descriptions of this region. Highlights from the dedication ceremony

Water wheel at Laird's Lodge.
​MacQuarrie Collection.

Wranglers, Dudes and Homesteaders: Stories from Montana's Swan Valley Lodges
Lindbergh Lake Lodge, Holland Lake Lodge and Gordon Ranch
30 minutes

Wranglers, Dudes & Homesteaders CD
The Huck Book book cover

Items below are available for purchase! See our Projects for details.

The Huck Book: Swan Valley's Berried Stories, History and Recipes

The Upper Swan Valley Historical Society (USVHS), established in 1988, is dedicated to the discovery, collection, preservation and interpretation of materials that will help establish and illustrate our local history.


The upper Swan Valley area is unique in that it still retains a plethora of evidence of its varied history. There still exist old Indian trails crisscrossing our mountains. Old trapper cabins and marten notched trees are still around on the landscape. This area was homesteaded and settled at a relatively late date, primarily from the mid-1910's and later, with many artifacts and buildings of that particular era still in existence. Early Forest Service ranger station buildings and cabins are still here. Springboard notched trees and sawmill sites from the early logging days are scattered around the valley.

Photo of Swan Peak by Steve Ellis

Preserving and Promoting the Cultural Heritage of the Swan Valley.

Swan Valley Museum

Tours offered by appointment. To schedule call (406) 754-2745
or ​(406) 754-2238 ​or
Contact Us