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Artifact Spotlight #5

This Friday, August 7th, 2015, we will be auctioning off the paintings in our fundraiser event! Please join us in supporting the Museum with an evening of art and history, all proceeds benefiting the Museum. Artist and Museum director Kelly Hartman will be present to tell a bit about the history of each piece. Each live auction painting will be accompanied by a set of Cooke City Montana Museum wine glasses. Everybody is invited.

#2 (silent auction)

“Being one of the few children in Cooke, I at once became a great favorite with the miners. I often wondered how I could have lived without them. I loved them, but best of all, I loved Horn Miller.” – Mary Margaret Curl, ME

Oil on canvas


This rabbit is made out of paper mache, his head is removable, probably for a place to put candy in his hollow body. The color and the small nicks and breaks in his ears drew me to this artifact. He is adorable, but has an expression that seems to tell a greater story. The red orange paired with the blue green fabric accentuates the two.

#20 (live auction)

“And so they get through the winter very well.” – Gertrude Zerr, Those That Stayed

Oil on canvas


I found this quote sometime last year and it stuck with me. The article details a woman's life in the mountains, particularly Cooke City. Gertrude Zerr mentions women crocheting endlessly making quilts, blankets etc. to keep their hands busy during the long winter months (as if they didn't have enough to do throughout a day just to survive!). This image of women sitting by lamplight came to my mind, and the contact of one woman and another through writing letters, the thrill of a response…..”and so they get through the winter very well”. It sounds like a peaceful life, one in tune with mother nature and the contentment of just being alive. And so all of these elements came together in this painting, the lamp, the letter, the needles and thread, the representation of a strong woman living in a strong landscape.

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