The C.M. Russell Museum, recognized among the finest Western Art Museums in the country, is home to one of the world’s largest collections of artworks by Charles Marion Russell (1864-1926). Known as “America’s Cowboy Artist,” he is considered to be one of the most important artists of his time.
The museum’s collections also include the works of such well-known artists as O. C. Seltzer, Winold Reiss, J. H. Sharp, E. E. Heikka, E. I. Couse, Olaf Wieghorst, Henry Farny, and Frank Tenney Johnson.
Charles M. Russell moved west in 1880, running cattle, living as a cowboy, and eventually settling in Great Falls, Montana, with his wife, Nancy Cooper Russell. His art is a beautiful record of this remarkable time in our country’s history – from the landscapes, wildlife and cultures of the West to the social and environmental changes occurring at the turn of the century.
Other museum exhibitions enjoyed by visitors are the Browning Firearms Collection, The Bison: American Icon, Heart of Plains Indian Culture, and visiting art exhibitions that change regularly.
Also located at the C.M. Russell Museum complex is Russell’s original log studio, made of western red cedar telephone poles and built in 1903. It is here that Russell created his most significant works. Charlie and Nancy Russell’s blue two-story frame home built in 1900 is located adjacent to the studio. The home and studio together were designated a National Historic Landmark in 1966.
From Russell’s breathtaking art to collections of his personally illustrated letters and poetry, the C.M. Russell Museum brings its visitors an expansive look at this extraordinary man – America’s Cowboy Artist.