On January 17, 2017, Medicine Rocks State Park in Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks Region 7 was listed in the National Register of Historic Places. The National Register is a list of historic and archaeological sites that meet specific criteria of local, state and national heritage significance.
Located between Ekalaka and Baker, the park includes 161 sandstone hoodoos that contain over 10,000 historic and prehistoric inscriptions ranging in age from 1000 years ago up until the time of World War II and beyond. Many images are associated with significant people, events and organizations. Theodore Roosevelt visited the park in 1883 and described it as the most “fantastically beautiful a place as I have ever seen.”
Medicine Rocks now joins a list of 10 state parks that enjoy this nationally recognized status, in addition to seven state parks which are designated National Historic Landmarks—the cream of the crop of significant heritage sites in the nation.
The listing of Medicine Rocks is the result of a partnership with MSU-Billings, specifically with Dr. Tim Urbaniak, who conducted two student field schools at the park in an effort to document each inscription, its location and historic significance within the park. After five long years of research and writing the park is now listed in the National Register. National Register listing enables heritage properties to obtain state and federal grant funding that would otherwise be unavailable.