The Upper Swan Valley Historical Society’s mission is to preserve and promote the cultural heritage of the Swan Valley and inspire a sense of belonging by discovering, collecting, and interpreting its cultural heritage. The historical society opened a museum in 2013 that is home to exhibits that depict homesteader life, one room schools, historic lodges, and the early U.S. Forest Service. They also keep many historical Swan Valley structures and artifacts on exhibit, and much of the society’s transcribed oral histories and photos have been published in three books and in a video clip.
The Montana History Foundation funded the Upper Swan Valley Historical Society to transcribe and catalogue existing oral histories, digitize at-risk historic print photographs, and assign accurate historical captions to these photographs. With help from Jennifer Bernel of the Montana Memory Project, the Upper Swan Valley Historical Society stored digital records on an organized system on computers and on backup hard drives.