Neighborhood NewsHi-Line


Depot Museum in Rudyard will host State Paleontologist for a fundraiser

Rudyard Dinosaur
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Posted at 6:03 PM, Jul 03, 2023
and last updated 2023-07-03 20:20:17-04

RUDYARD — The Rudyard Historical Society began in April of 1994 and serves six communities along the Hi-Line - Joplin, Inverness, Rudyard, Hingham, Gildford, and Kremlin.

The Depot is a former train station that sat along the railroad tracks on the south end of Rudyard. Its current resting place came from a group of old-time locals who formerly drank coffee each morning at a café in town.

“The lady that ran the coffee shop said the depot is for sale for a dollar. We should buy it and make a museum. They (the group of men) laughed at her. The next day one of them handed her a dollar and that started it,” explained Lila Redding, a volunteer at the Depot Museum.

The Depot’s first fundraising initiative was a rock wall that holds the name of military members in the community and the names of homesteading families. At the Depot’s grand opening, nearly 1,000 people showed up.

As the museum sits, it’s entirely run by donations and volunteers.

It serves as a time capsule with exhibits of practically every paper record in the area, an agriculture exhibit with equipment renovated and donated by producers, and its newest exhibit, The Dinosaur Room.

Much of the museum’s revenue comes from traffic to and from Glacier National Park; if tourism is high at the park, you can bet the Depot has an influx of visitors.

On Friday, July 7, 2023, at 7:00 p.m. Montana’s State Paleontologist John Horner will be paying a visit to the Depot Fundraiser to deliver a talk on the dinosaurs found around the state.

In Rudyard, the area is known for having the “Oldest Sorehead” aka a Duckbill Dinosaur, Gryposaurus. The Dinosaur Room has a near-perfect model, excluding a missing skull that was lost in a sinkhole.

“He's about 75 million years old. When we found him, he was completely articulated, which means he laid over, died, and was buried.”

The Depot works with the Museum of the Rockies in Bozeman which provides exhibits for the museum.

The Dinosaur talk on July 7th is a freewill donation, and the Depot Museum invites anybody to come to visit. It will offer wine and cheese hors d'oeuvres.

The museum is one of 13 museums on Montana’s Dinosaur Trail (website).

If you are interested in visiting the museum it is located at 25 Fourth Avenue in Rudyard; the phone number is 406-355-4322; click here to visit the website.

Its weekday hours are Monday through Saturday, 10-4 pm.


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