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Making our great library better since 1978!

The Lewis & Clark Library Foundation was founded in 1978 to support the Lewis & Clark Library system. Significant gifts from the estates of Merlyn Rector and Ronald Schmid provided the initial funds for establishment of a permanent endowment. Subsequent gifts from hundreds of generous donors, the Bernice Boone Trust, Dorothy Thayer Trust, and Sarah McCabe Power Trust grew the Foundation’s assets to more than $1 million in 2022.

For decades, the Library Foundation has supported enhancements to the main library and its branches in August, East Helena, and Lincoln. In 2012, the Foundation helped the Library acquire its first Bookmobile and in 2019 purchased the Words on Wheels Book Bicycle. In 2020, the Foundation contributed to the major remodel of the Main Library.


Accountability to our Donors

The Lewis & Clark Library Foundation is committed to:

  • Managing our finances competently and maintaining financial accountability;

  • Informing the community of our activities;

  • Respecting the privacy rights and wishes of our donors; and

  • Acknowledging the authority of Lewis & Clark Library Board of Trustees to set library policy and the responsibility of the library directors and staff to operate the library.

To make a secure online donation to the Library Foundation, click on the Donate button below.  Or visit our Giving page to learn about the many ways to support Lewis & Clark Library.

Legacy Giving

You can make a difference, now and in the future.

The Foundation’s support for the Library is made possible by contributions, large and small, from individuals, businesses, and organizations.


The Foundation board and Library leadership work together to determine how much and where to invest in improvements to ensure a strong library system throughout Lewis and Clark County. 

Up to 30 per cent of the Foundation's gift revenue is wisely invested each year. The Foundation's endowment funds and trust investments are managed to ensure long-term growth and stability.

Read more about ways to give to the Library Foundation, how to honor someone with a tribute gift, and special events for sustaining donors.

Strategic Plan - 2022


The purpose of the Lewis & Clark Library Foundation is to solicit, receive, and maintain funds for charitable, literary, or educational purposes for the primary benefit of Lewis & Clark Library, Helena, Montana, which includes all its branch libraries in Lewis and Clark County, with guidance from Library staff and the Library Board of Trustees.


The Lewis & Clark Library Foundation, a 501(c)(3) corporation, works to enhance the quality of public library services to our communities by encouraging and generating philanthropic gifts and bequests, with accountability to the donors and the public.



The Lewis & Clark Library Foundation will support Lewis & Clark Library in providing access to the highest quality library and information services for all members of our communities now and into the future.

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