The Original Swan River Tavern is now standing on a firm concrete foundation. Matthew Brothers Construction completed the project in December 2023. The Tavern had sunk three inches. It had been resting on timber blocks that were rotting.
Project funding came from a Missoula County Impact Grant, a Preserve Missoula County History Grant, the Unaffiliated Church of Condon, Western Cultural Inc., and private donation.
Bill Anderson, Lloyd Hahn, and a crew of volunteers moved the Swan River Tavern to the Swan Valley Museum & Heritage Site in 2012. Donated by the Quadros family.
Neil and Dixie Meyer brought two rustic chairs and a table to the museum grounds. Neil used a chainsaw to make the chairs and table from a very large lodgepole pine tree - nice additions to our museum.
The Selish-Ql'ispe Culture Committee provided a Swan Valley Place Names Map for display in the Swan Valley Museum. The map features the Pend d'Oreille Indian names of the landmarks, as well as photos and descriptions of this region.
Below are highlights from the OCT 11, 2017 Dedication Ceremony.
The two-room Maki Cabin was likely built by Swan Valley homesteader Jalmer Maki in the late 1910s or early 1920s. One room was a sauna.
Special thanks to Gary Freyholtz of Swan Valley Logcrafters, who has pieced the cabin back together from a pile of logs. We would also like to thank Gary Lazarowski and Steve Lamar who have added the rafters and installed the roof.
The Upper Swan Valley Historical Society, Inc. obtained an old trapper cabin to exhibit at the Swan Valley Museum. Built by Fred Messerer in the late 1920s, early 1930s era, the cabin originally was located in the Elbow Lake Lookout area above Lindbergh Lake.
Gary Lazarowski built a tool exhibit for the Museum and donated a number of books and information tied to log home construction.
Salish and Kootenai College Professor Tim Ryan helped volunteers set up a tipi the way his grandmother taught him.
Thank you, Custom Landworks! Chris Barnes and his crew installed a new split-rail cedar fence along the south boundary of the Museum property.
The Whalen homestead cabin is now at home on the Swan Valley museum site. It was located on the Donald property visible from the Kraft Creek road. Sharon Gressle a descendant of the homesteaders along with her relatives donated the cabin and the moving costs to the Upper Swan Valley Historical Society.
Circa Early 1930s. Neil Meyer's drag saw was mainly used to cut large diameter firewood. Bob Newman provided the mechanical parts and Leonard Moore provided the saw blade. Neil Meyer rebuilt the wood frame and assembled the drag saw.
1921 Number 1 American Sawmill
Originally powered by a steam engine, this mill is fully operational. It can be run by steam, gasoline, diesel, or water power. The flat belt turns the wheel. The carriage carries the logs to the saw blade. The sawn boards come off on the rollers. Donated by Neil and Dixie Meyer and restored by Neil Meyer.
Old Case tractor, 1917 model.