Buses of Yellowstone Preservation Trust completes building stucco restoration

Posted September 10, 2021

This article originally appeared in the Laurel Outlook.

The exterior stucco restoration and painting of the Buses of Yellowstone Preservation Trust’s historic building in Red Lodge was recently completed. The weeks of hard work and skilled craftsmanship are readily visible to all who pass by or visit the building.

The historic building was built in 1936 by A.D. Whitcomb and is the site of one of the oldest, if not the oldest, service stations that operated continuously in the state of Montana. Today it is used to display and store the Buses’ fleet of original operating vehicles used in Yellowstone Park prior to World War II.

The exterior restoration of the building was done in accordance with an Architectural Assessment performed by a Preservation Architect in early 2020. The assessment provided a comprehensive assessment of the building in its current condition and a detailed roadmap for future restoration efforts. Restoration of the exterior stucco was one of the tasks identified in the assessment.

The Buses received funding from the Montana History Foundation and the Montana Department of Commerce Tourism Grant Programs to support the exterior restoration and painting of the stucco. Board members from the Montana History Foundation were recently in Red Lodge to view restoration progress as well as take a ride in one of the Buses’ historic vehicles.

According to Don Mueller, Buses of Yellowstone Preservation Trust President, “The restoration of the stucco on the building will preserve and protect this important landmark contributing to the character of the Red Lodge Commercial Historic District which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The historic building and vehicles housed therein exemplifies the cultural attractions that draw tourists to Montana and is a valuable component to the economy of Red Lodge. The funds provided by the Montana History Foundation and the Montana Department of Commerce Tourism Grant Programs will go a long ways towards preserving and sharing with others an important part of our past.”