Keeping The Barn

A MontanaPBS Documentary currently in production.


Keeping The Barn | Trailer


The story of Montana’s barns is a personal one. The buildings hold more than just feed and livestock. They remain an iconic part of the Montana landscape. Livelihoods and lives depended on their quality and durability. The barns of Montana are beautiful symbols of hard work and ingenuity and a reflection of the families who use them.

Like everything in America, the barn is a melting pot of ideas and styles. As immigrants settled in Montana, they brought their building expertise. The English barn is the grandfather of the American barn and that is also true in Montana. The Finns and Norwegians crafted intricately notched log barns. The Croatians dazzled with their precise stone work. Now, over a century later, these barns are just some of the examples still standing tall across the Montana landscape.

This one-hour program will showcase the rich heritage and personal stories connected to the barns of Montana. The show will follow one family as a community rallies to help them preserve and maintain their historic barn. The show will travel to the state’s farms and ranches to show a variety of examples and meet the families so closely connected to these labors of love. The barns of Montana are forever built into the emotional connection between the people and the land.

To donate to this project, please contact Aaron Pruitt or Kristina Martin or call us at 406-994-3437.


Producer/Director John Twiggs brings 30-years of television experience to lead the production team. He has documented Montana history with award-winning programs such as, Evelyn Cameron: Pictures from a Worthy Life, and, Playing for the World: The 1904 Fort Shaw Indian Girls’ Basketball Team. His body of work has earned national awards (Cine Golden Eagle) and regional honors (Emmy).

MontanaPBS production partners:

  • Authors Chere Jiusto and Christine Brown
  • Photographer Tom Ferris (Hand Raised: Barns of Montana)
  • Author Martin R. Drivdahl (Sentinels of the Treasure State)
  • The production team will also work with experts at the Montana Preservation Alliance and utilize resources from the Montana Historical Society.

The project is currently in the fundraising and pre-production phase. The overall fundraising goal is $200,000.


We would like to express our sincere thanks to these supporters who have made generous contributions to the making of the film:

  • Jane and Ron Lerner

Contact Info:

Ray Ekness, Executive Producer, MontanaPBS
(406) 243-4154,

John Twiggs, Producer, MontanaPBS
(406) 243-4565,