2020 Grants Awarded

En-th-a-eye Nłʔay “Place of the Little Bull Trout” 4th Annual Indigenous Film Festival, Missoula Urban Indian Health Center, $1,000. The IFF incorporates multiple aspects of the arts in the story of what it means to be a contemporary American Indian, highlighting resilience, advocacy, and enduring cultural connection from a foundation of historical and intergenerational trauma and loss. The objective of this event is to acknowledge and honor the presence of the American Indian community within Missoula and Indigenous peoples across the world, and to be witness to their resilience as a people as displayed through a contemporary medium of storytelling. Films will be shown March 21 – 22, 2020, at the Missoula Children’s Theatre in Missoula.

One Book Belgrade, Belgrade Community Library, $1,000. One Book Belgrade, the first community read in Belgrade, aims to foster community connections by bringing people together to read. The series of programs will spark conversations related to WWII, love, ethics, espionage, bravery, and family, culminating in a presentation and Q&A with the author.

Hamilton High School Mock UN, Hamilton High School, Hamilton, $610. Humanities Montana awarded a $610 Opportunity Grant to Hamilton High School to fund the participation of their team in The University of Montana’s Annual Model UN High School Conference. Students from Hamilton will participate with other Montana high schools in activities that mimic the operations of the United Nations. As representatives of nations, students collaborate, negotiate, and debate with each other to gain a better understanding of current world affairs and the practices of diplomacy. Hamilton High School’s first-ever model UN team will participate in the conference on November 25th and 26th at the University of Montana in Missoula.

One Small Step initiative in partnership with NPR’s StoryCorps, Montana Media Lab, Missoula, $1,000. The Montana Media Lab is partnering with NPR’s StoryCorp to facilitate and record nonpolitical conversations between Montanans on opposite sides of the political divide as part of the One Small Step project. The goal is to break down boundaries created by politics and remember our shared humanity. All conversations were recorded at the University of Montana in December 2019 and can be listened to here.

Theatre in the History Classroom, Havre High School History Department, Havre, $300. Teaching actress Rosie Ayers will come to Havre High School classrooms to use theater and drama to enhance the content and to-role play solutions to common societal problems in America, then and now, under the direction and expertise of Rosie Ayers.

Media, Music and Activism in a Latino Context, Montana State University Billings, Billings, $1,000. Media artist and musician Gabriel Gonzalez will provide insights into a career in the arts from a bilingual and bicultural perspective. He will share his expertise in classrooms and workshops and join MSUB faculty John Roberts and Pan Blanco along with salsa instructors in a Latin Jazz concert.

2019 Indigenous Cinema Series, The Roxy Theater, Missoula, $1,000. The Roxy Theater in partnership with Indigenous Film Festival and Missoula Urban Indian Heath Center is proud to present the Indigenous Cinema Series, a weekly series in November intended to highlight indigenous stories in honor of National Native American Heritage Month.

Native Perspectives and Voices of the 21st Century, School Services of Montana, Bozeman, $300. This professional learning session will feature a roundtable discussion with Blackfeet, Crow, Northern Cheyenne, and Urban Indian representatives. K-12 Educators will meet at the MOR on November 1 to connect with and share stories across various American Indian tribes, cultures and generations to gain perspective and insight into contemporary Montana Plains Indian life in order to gain a heightened sense of how to integrate and highlight individual American Indian stories and cultural perspectives into their students’ classroom experience, with an emphasis on storytelling.

Celebrating Yellow Bird Woman, UM College of Humanities and Sciences, Missoula, $825. In collaboration with Diverse U’s Diversity Week and Montana’s Elouise Cobell Day, the film 100 Years: One Woman’s Fight for Justice will be shown in the UC Theatre on the UM campus November 5th from 2-3pm. The film tells the story of Elouise Cobell, a modern-day Blackfeet Warrior, who filed a lawsuit on behalf of nearly half a million Native Americans with support from the Native American Rights Foundation.

The Pink Dress Photography Project, Zootown Arts Community Center, Missoula, $750. An exhibition that showcases photos taken by and featuring young women from Mexico, New York, Los Angeles, and Two River School in Pablo, Montana. The project examines the ways in which left-over pink dresses allowed girls to break the bounds of peer defined ‘normal’ behavior. Facilitated by David J. Spear, photographer, teacher and director of A VOICE-Art Vision & Outreach In Community Education, the project also includes a forum of art professionals who created and implemented the project followed by the young photographers who made the photographs on display at ZACC. Forum panelists include: Julie Hajune, previous director of the CSKT Tribal Department; Jennifer Finley, poet and writer; Dr. Lyn Pentecost, Executive Director and co-founder of The Lower Eastside Girls Club of New York City.

Great Falls Festival of the Book, Great Falls Public Library, $3,500. An expanded four-day festival will celebrate literature and diverse author’s voices including national best sellers Laura Moriarty and Richard Fifield.

Worlds Apart But Not Strangers: Holocaust Education and Indian Education for All, Olga Lengyel Institute for Holocaust Studies and Human Rights, $2,500. Humanities Montana will fund an experiential inquiry-based seminar for Montana educators in Billings this summer.

Copyright Workshop for Cultural Heritage Repositories, University of Montana, $1,500. This workshop will help cultural heritage professionals better understand copyright law and risk assessment.

Genocide Awareness Lecture Series, Flathead Valley Community College, $1,500. This year’s Kalispell-based lecture series will focus on genocide around the world in response to an increase in white supremacist activity in the region and nation.

The Write Question, Montana Public Radio, $5,000. The Write Question is a half-hour weekly radio program/podcast that features the literature of, and writers from, the western U.S.

2020 Lecture SeriesElk River Arts & Lectures, $2,500. This series will bring five to six authors to Park County to work with public school children and give free and easily affordable public lectures.

Native Filmmaker Initiative, Big Sky Film Institute, $2,000. Humanities Montana funds will support Native American filmmakers interacting with rural schools.

Plenary Talks: Language Reclamation and BeyondUniversity of Montana, $5,000. The linguistics program at UM, in conjunction with Chief Dull Knife College, will host a series of talks on indigenous language documentation and reclamation, June 15-26, 2020.

The Montana Book Festival, Arts Missoula, $3,000. The festival is a celebration of literary arts including readings, author signings, panels, workshops, special events, vendor exhibits, and a book fair, held in downtown Missoula in early fall.

The Murder of Frank Little, Death in the West, $1,500. This 10-episode crime history podcast unearths the story of Frank Little, a union organizer who was lynched in Butte in 1917.


Is This Agriculture or Technology? The Story of 1920s Montana Wheat, John Clayton, $1,000. This research fellowship will focus on the Campbell Farming Company, at one time the biggest farm in the country.

Not Guilty, Gabriel Furshong, $1,000. The author will investigate and expose the mysterious dismissal of manslaughter charges against Joseph Edward Furshong, the author’s great-grandfather, as a way of exploring race and class privileges in 1920s Montana.