Butte-Silver Bow Archives

17 W. Quartz St.
Butte, MT 59701
(406) 782-3280

Please visit the Official Website for THE BUTTE-SILVER BOW ARCHIVES


If you e-mail a request to the Archives, please include your postal mailing address. Most information cannot be sent through e-mail.


The Archives willingly accepts and preserves printed documents,
photographs, and other material of historical significance that
may be donated by individuals, organizations, and businesses.


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New Look

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Scriptures on Front

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Butte's Archives a Genealogist's Treasure-Trove
An article about the Archives written by
Betsy Cohen of The Montana Standard

The Butte Archives provides extensive services to the genealogist.
Many of the records are wonderful sources of family information,
and genealogical inquiries are welcomed!!

The Butte-Silver Bow Public Archives has a variety of genealogical resources.
Whether you live in Butte or are just passing through, you are welcome to visit the Archives.
You may perform your own research at no charge, and assistance is provided if needed.
The Archives are located at 17 West Quartz Street (Quartz and Main Streets) in "uptown" Butte.



For complete information, visit the official site of the
Butte Archives at


The Archives provides extensive services to the genealogist. Many of the records are wonderful sources of family information, and genealogy inquiries are welcomed.

The Polk City Directories from 1885-1990, listing all the working people and businesses in Butte. Entries include name, occupation, and residence.

Cemetery Index from 1880-1980, listing all people buried in the cemetery by inscription of headstone (date of birth, date of death).

Obituary File of funeral notices.

Early Marriage Licenses from 1877-1880s.

Birth Books listing children born in Butte from 1906-1920. Entries include name, parents name, nativity residence, mothers maiden name, and father's occupation.

Birth Certificates  1871, 1881-1970

Death Certificates 1889-1970

Mortuary Records listing those who died from 1901-1917. Entries include family name, cause of death, address, occupation, length of stay in Butte, funeral director, and cemetery.

School Census Records 1900-1970

High School Annuals
-  Butte High School 1927-1980
   -  Butte Central (Boys & Girls) 1919-1930

Great Registers, the official voting register for the City of Butte, 1885-1914.   Entries include individuals name, address, occupation, and place and date of naturalization.

Library Resources 
   - Daughters of the American Revolution Library 
   - Butte and Montana Books
   - Dave Emmons' Irish Book Collection
   - John Lahr Railroad Library

Naturalization Records  1881-1970

Census from 1880, 1900, and 1910.

Coroner's Registers from 1894-1973, listing all deaths not witnessed by a physician and deaths by accident or crime.

Early Telephone Books

Government Records with indexes.

Manuscript Collections 1860-2009 - Includes diaries, correspondence and financial records.

Organizational Collections 1890-1980 - Includes minutes, membership lists, correspondence and financial records.

Labor History Collections 1890-1980

Photograph Collections 1890-present

Industrial Collections 1892-1980
   -  Butte Anaconda & Pacific /Railroad
   -  The Anaconda Copper Mining Company

Maps 1884-2000
   - Sanborn maps, geological and street maps



The Archives has an extensive collection of area newspapers, published between 1896 and 1962. Most are hard bound volumes. The Butte Miner/Montana Standard are indexed by subject. The collection includes the following papers:

The Butte Miner - 1896-1928
Butte Daily Post - 1913-1959
The Montana Standard - 1928-1962
The Butte Intermountain - 1894-1913
The Anaconda Standard - 1899-1928
The Butte Evening News - 1905-1910

The Archives has the following miscellaneous papers:

Copper Commando
The Montana American
The Socialist
The New Northwest
Montana Free Press
The Butte Independent (Irish), 1910
Butte Bulletin, W.F. Dunne, Editor
Miners Voice
The Smeltermans Voice
The Eye Opener
History of Montana, 1929, 1934


The Archives has a variety of area maps including mining claim maps, city plat maps, and topographical maps. The most widely used are the Sandborn Fire Insurance maps, 1884-1952. These are a wonderful resource for the study of Butte's Historic Landmark District.


The Archives maintains a multi-volume library of monographs and reference books devoted to the history of Butte-Silver Bow and Montana from the 1890s to the modern day. Many rare books are available to researchers. Contact the Archives for complete list.


The Archives government records collection contains records from 1879 through 1990 and includes minutes of the City Council meetings, petitions, correspondence to the city government, and documentation on every aspect of public administration in the local government. The minutes of the Health Department for the flu epidemic of 1918 are complete and display how public administrators responded to crisis at that time.


The Archives maintains Naturalization Records, Petitions for Naturalization, and Declarations of Intent from 1881-1960 for persons who were naturalized in Silver Bow County only.


The Archives has the complete collection of records for the Butte-Anaconda and Pacific Railroad (B.A.&.P.R.R.). This short line railroad was established in 1892 to haul ore from the Butte mines to the smelter in Anaconda, Montana, and held the distinction of being the first electrified railroad in the United States. The collection contains all business regarding the operation and history of the B.A.&P.R.R., including personnel records, payroll and business vouchers, right-of-way maps, and architectural drawings of various railroad structures at the turn-of-the-century.


There are 18 organizational collections, which include membership lists, minutes, scrapbooks, histories, local and national correspondence, and exhibit items. Among the holdings are the records of the following organizations:

The Independent Order of Odd Fellows
The Knights of Phythias
Masonic Order
Ancient Order of Hibernians
Butte Professional Women's Club
Marian Whites Arts and Crafts
West Side Shakespeare Club


 Suzanne Andrews
 MTGenWeb County Coordinator
 for Butte-Silver Bow County, MT

Copyright 1996 - present