Museums

The World Museum of Mining Butte

Where is it at?

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The World Museum of Mining
155 Museum Way
P.O. Box 33
Butte
MT
59703
Tel: 406 723 7211

Where are we going today?

The World Museum of Mining was founded in 1963 when the close of Butte's mining heyday was less than two decades away. In the end Butte Montana experienced a century of hardrock mining and earned the reputation of being home to one of the world's most productive copper mines of all time.

The Museum exists to preserve the enduring history of Butte and the legacy of its rich mining and cultural heritage.

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How much does it cost?

  • AdultsAround $9
  • ChildrenAround $4
LAST UPDATED 2013

When can we go?

Daily 9am to 5pm.

Teachers corner

Young miners grades K-5 will have the opportunity to explore the World Museum of Mining through tours, crafts and hands-on experiments..

Any Top Tips?

Keep an eye out for special activities and guide pamphlets aimed at kids..

Need a little extra help?

The underground sections are non ADA compliant and not suitable for those with mobility issues..

What people are saying?

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    I believe their layout of an old mining town, which includes original buildings and replicas was very well done and gives you a very good idea of what the mining camps would have looked like during their time of operation. The grounds allow you to see numerous pieces of actual mining equipment, and they have signage with great information about the different pieces, all of which you can see on a self guided tour. We also participated in the underground tour which takes you into the Orphan Girl mine - it was fascinating! We were outfitted with actual...Read More

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    The museum consists of the contents of the mining yard of the Orphan Girl Mine, a mineral exhibit, toy exhibit, and a mock up of a turn on the century town with reclaimed, restored, and constructed buildings. There is also the option of doing an underground tour of a portion of one of the accessible levels of the Orphan Girl Mine which is entered through a modern day adit. This was our second visit to the WMM. On the first we didn't do the underground tour (we had a 4 1/2 year old that we weren't sure would hang out for the whole 1.5-2 hours-not...Read More

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    Outdoor exhibits were difficult to see as many of them did not open to allow for an unobstructed view. Great mineral collection. Did not take the mine tour due to rain. Would come back to experience that.

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    Very informative and well done

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    Very interesting and informative. We had a great time!

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by Katie Butcher

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I believe their layout of an old mining town, which includes original buildings and replicas was very well done and gives you a very good idea of what the mining camps would have looked like during their time of operation. The grounds allow you to see numerous pieces of actual mining equipment, and they have signage with great information about the different pieces, all of which you can see on a self guided tour. We also participated in the underground tour which takes you into the Orphan Girl mine - it was fascinating! We were outfitted with actual battery operated lights and were given the opportunity to see the inside of the mine with a tour guide. Our family thoroughly enjoyed the tour and the guide was extremely knowledgeable and did a fantastic job! We would highly recommend spending some time here - plan for 2-3 hours to explore everything and take the underground tour. But if you plan to participate in the underground tour check with the museum first as our littlest wasn't allowed to go underground. This is a great way to see what made Butte America and explore its rich (literally) history.

by Amy W

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The museum consists of the contents of the mining yard of the Orphan Girl Mine, a mineral exhibit, toy exhibit, and a mock up of a turn on the century town with reclaimed, restored, and constructed buildings. There is also the option of doing an underground tour of a portion of one of the accessible levels of the Orphan Girl Mine which is entered through a modern day adit. This was our second visit to the WMM. On the first we didn't do the underground tour (we had a 4 1/2 year old that we weren't sure would hang out for the whole 1.5-2 hours-not all of which is underground) and had a great time, we love Montana history. The old school is very cool, particularly if you have kids.
This visit, with the youngest now 6, we did the underground tour and it was fantastic. Our tour guide, Robert, was a great storyteller and was able to encapsulate the history of the gold rush (and subsequent silver & copper booms) in Montana and the rise of the Copper Kings in a way that was entertaining, informative, and made the past come alive. My husband and I have read MT history and have lived in the state for 40 years, yet we both learned new things on the tour and were drawn in by the great storytelling. Robert presented a great summary but also knew a lot of details about Butte, the Copper Kings, and hard rock mining. Going underground is a treat, particularly if you haven't been before. All get to don hardhats with headlamps.
If you like old machines, iron, mining, or just history in the intermountain west you will find plenty at the WMM. Also, don't miss the FREE mineral museum at Montana Tech. Its worth it to see all the rare and precious minerals and stones.

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