“Eastern Montana is in all her glory in new photo book”
Article by Kristen Inbody, Great Falls Tribune – July 19, 2014
Despite the state’s name, Montana is as much wide open spaces as mountains.
Those prairie lands are celebrated in a new photo book, “Eastern Montana,” by photographer Leland Howard, who logged more than 10,000 miles in several years photographing eastern expanses.
Howard and his sister Lynna Howard partnered on the descriptions of the places photographed for the book.
In Volborg, located between Miles City and Broadus, the book explains that though the general store and post offices boasts “pop. 5,” only two people (and one dog) live in the town since Dick and Jean Stanley’s children grew up and left town. The dance hall closed in the 1970s because of underage drinking.
In Broadus, the “Doc” and the “Saloon” are are on the same street, noted with a wooden sign, so one can “pick your medicine.” Another photo highlights the Howdy Hotel and Lounge built in Forsyth in 1905.
“Diminished, flickering, small towns refuse to die. Never tamed, they escape domestication by remaining themselves, eccentric and tough as nails.” (p.131)
The land, however, is the real star of the story. In vivid color through changing seasons, Howard documented Custer National Forest, the Yellowstone and Missouri rivers, the C.M. Russell National Wildlife Refuge, badlands and the unusual formations at Medicine Rocks State Park.
Twisted, decaying homestead shacks in Chouteau County, lush ranch land along Box Elder Creek in Fergus County, worn cowboy boots near Miles City and wild horses in the Pryor Mountains south of Billings all find their place in the book.
Also in the Pryor Mountains, Howard photographed Big Ice Cave, “cool enough to retain ice all year. The cave floor is a slick sheet of ice given a unique topography by water dripping from the rock above.”
The Global Health Equity Foundation, a nonprofit organization that seeks to improve access to health care in underserved communities, benefits from the book.
Reach Tribune Staff Writer Kristen Inbody at 791-1490 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Book: “Eastern Montana”
Photographer: Leland Howard
Authors: Lynna Howard and Leland Howard
Publisher: Al’Myra Communications