Our Story

Our Mission

Humanities Montana serves communities through stories and conversation. We offer experiences that nurture imagination and ideas by speaking to Montanans’ diverse history, literature, and philosophy.

Land Acknowledgement
Humanities Montana acknowledges that we are in the homelands of Indigenous people. We offer our respect for their history and culture, and for the path they have always shown us in caring for this place for generations to come.

Our Vision

To achieve our goal, Humanities Montana —

  • provides programs that tell our diverse stories
  • facilitates conversations about the most pressing issues
  • supports Montana’s cultural institutions through grants and partnerships
  • offers humanities such as history, literature, and philosophy to nurture memory, imagination, and ideas

Our Impact

Locations we have been active in

CARES Grants


  • 95 CARES Grants have been awarded
  • $419,580 awarded

Helping Montana’s Cultural Institutions Thrive


of Montana’s cultural organizations reported they risked closure due to the pandemic.*

Since May 2020, Humanities Montana has awarded $419,580 in emergency CARES Act grants to 95 cultural institutions across the state to retain employees, pay operational costs, and continue programming.

* Data gathered from a survey administered by Humanities Montana in April 2020.

Encouraging Community Across Distance

Social distancing has led to growing isolation and the loss of community bonds.*


have connected virtually to learn about topics like veterans’ experiences, our shi­fting political landscape, poetry in difficult times, and the role of journalism in a democracy.

Starting in April 2020, Humanities Montana has produced 49 online humanities programs Montanans can access from the safety of their homes.

* K. Sikali (2020). “The dangers of social distancing: How COVID-19 can reshape our social experience.” Journal of Community Psychology

Connecting Montanans
Through the Humanities


of Americans believe the humanities help people understand others whose lives are different from their own.*

Since March 2020, Humanities Montana has produced 46 issues of Digital and DIY Humanities, circulated to over 5,000 people weekly. Each issue offers resources to engage Montanans looking for new perspectives.

* American Academy of Arts and Sciences, Exploring the Humanities in American Life

Strengthen Democracy

Humanities Montana hosts Why It Matters: Conversations on Civic and Electoral Engagement.


of Americans say discussing politics with people they disagree with is stressful and frustrating.*

Why It Matters is a series of statewide virtual panels about how citizens engage in electoral and democratic processes in our state—from tribal communities to young people, in rural areas and urban centers, using protests and legislation to create government for the people, by the people. The first two panels attracted over 400 participants from around the state.

* Pew Research Center, U.S. Politics and Policy

Our Strategy

Strengthen communities, inspire ideas, and deepen mutual understanding.

Humanities Montana is Montana’s state humanities council. Established in 1972, we are one of fifty-six councils across the nation that the National Endowment for the Humanities created in order to better infuse the humanities directly and effectively into public life.

For 49 years, Humanities Montana has helped strengthen communities through grants and special programs that reach into every corner of our state. We produce, fund, create, and support humanities-based projects and programs, eye-opening cultural experiences, and meaningful conversations. We connect people, inspire ideas, and deepen mutual understanding.