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Montana: A History of Two Centuries Revised Edition Paperback

ISBN-13: 978-0295971292 ISBN-10: 0295971290 Edition: Revised

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Montana: A History of Two Centuries Revised Edition + Montana Legacy: Essays on History, People, and Place + Montana: An Uncommon Land
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 480 pages
  • Publisher: University of Washington Press; Revised edition (January 1, 1991)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0295971290
  • ISBN-13: 978-0295971292
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.1 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #661,404 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

26 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Mark on September 9, 2001
Format: Paperback
This is what most people would call the "definitive" one-volume history of Montana, and I'd have to agree. Written primarily to serve as a testbook for college-level history courses, this is a comprehensive, balanced, and detailed overview of Montana's fascinating history. All three authors knew the state extraordinarily well, and clearly loved its past. (Both Malone and Roeder taught history at Montana State University, and Malone later served as the school's president; Lang edited the Montana Historical Society's journal.)
Still, it's difficult to recommend this book to the casual reader. By striving so diligently for completeness and balance, the authors created a product that is weighty, dense, and largely without style. Montana's vibrant, spirited history has been rendered lifeless here, and reading this book can be very slow going. As a professional historian, I find it to be a great reference tool, but its not something that most folks will want to read for fun. Instead, you might consider these two evocative and beautifully-written histories of the state: Joseph Kinsey Howard's "Montana: High, Wide, and Handsome" and K. Ross Toole's "Montana: An Uncommon Land." Both are classics in their field, and are wonderful reads.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Barney Considine on October 1, 2006
Format: Paperback
When I recently asked at the Montana Historical Association about the best history of Montana, this was the book recommended. Having read many books about Montana, I agree. The current edition, published in 1991, is authored by Malone, Roeder, and Lang. An earlier publication in 1976 was by Malone and Roeder alone, and the newer revision is significantly updated.

While acknowledging that Montana's history dates back thousands of years before white Europeans first appeared on the scene, this text primarily deals with history since the Lewis and Clark Expedition in 1805-1806.

Fur traders and mountain men followed quickly after Lewis and Clark. They explored the land but didn't settle anywhere for long. The populating of Montana began in the western part of the territory in the 1860s with the development of the gold and silver mining districts. Geographically, western and eastern Montana differ greatly. Cattlemen were the first developers of eastern Montana, primarily after 1880, and were followed after 1900 by the farmers of the homestead era. "A History of Two Centuries" is one of the few books to treat development of the entire state evenly.

Gold, cattle, mining, homesteading, railroads, economics, drought, and the evolution from frontier to integration into the United States are all elements of Montana's history. Each of these ingredients caused Montanans to compete forcefully against the natural world and one another. Many of the ingredients have spawned individual books. No other single book covers them all so well.

A lot of the Montana's history is at the heart of America's "Wild West." Few writers have the discipline to describe Montana without getting caught up in the romance of the myth.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 16, 2001
Format: Paperback
I am from Montana and have never really learned the history. I became interested after seeing a Montana Historical Society art showing. They recommended this book as the best general review out there. It is rare that any author can capture Montana's extrordinary beauty with words, but Mr. Malone does that surprisingly well. I would have to agree with the Historical Society that this is a great book for people unfamilier with Montana's diverse and amazing history.
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Greg Strandberg on April 4, 2013
Format: Paperback
I read this book years ago, and have been reading it again as I work on my own history of the state. It's a great source to use if you're writing an academic paper at one of the State's two main universities, and I found the reading to be quite smooth, actually. I used it as a source for my own history of the state, Tribes and Trappers, and it has at least 10 endnotes attached to it in my text.

It's also one of the few books about the state of Montana that actually touches upon recent history, at least up to 1990 or so. Not much is published in book form about the state after that, and it's a real shame. I wish we had more great books like this one about Montana. So if you want a good read about your state, or one you just want to live in, check this book out!
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1 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Danalee Lavelle on March 10, 2004
Format: Paperback
Michael Malone, who has since passed away, was a great scholar. As with his previous writings there is some overlap, but plenty of new material, as well. Other great books include Emmons' book which is also first class. Thus, I would recommend both Malone's early writings and Emmons book. The "Copper Camp" written during the Works project is another book worth looking at; but keep it in historical perspective. It seemed rather racist to me, particularly in the manner in which it deals with the Native American population.
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