Confederate Memorial Fountain, Helena, Montana

Confederate Memorial Fountain

Dublin Core


Confederate Memorial Fountain, Helena, Montana


The 101-year old granite United Daughters of the Confederacy (UDC) Confederate Memorial Fountain was located on the tallest hill in Hill Park, in Helena, Montana. It resembles a lighthouse, due to Carsley’s inspiration by the Butt-Millett fountain in Washington, DC, a memorial to the victims of the Titanic. [4] It includes two inscriptions: “A Loving Tribute to Our Confederate Soldiers” and “By the Daughters of the Confederacy in Montana, A.D. 1916.” [4] It was the only confederate monument in the northern Rockies and the only one located on public land in the northwest part of the United States for 101 years. It was unveiled on September 6, 1916 and the monument was sponsored by the local United Daughters of the Confederacy chapter. It was made during a time when segregation and Jim Crow were at their peak. Also, the Ku Klux Klan had “resurged in activity and membership nationwide, including in Helena.” [3] 

This monument was the first monument to be removed and replaced after the July 17, 2015 shooting of nine Black Americans at Emanuel African Methodist Epicopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina. 

On August 15, 2017, the American Indian Caucus of Montana’s state legislature called for the removal of the fountain. [3] Despite debates at a City Commission by the public on both sides, it was officially removed on August 18, 2017. The Montana Historical Society was one of the groups pushing the argument to keep the monument because it was part of Helena’s history and not connected to slavery. There were protesters against the removal but did not affect the removal of the fountain. Due to a lack of storage, it was removed to an undisclosed location. [3]

In April 2020, the monument was replaced by a new fountain called the Equity Fountain. 

In September 2021, the UDC chapter contacted the Rocky Mountain Confederate Conservation Council with interest in relocating the fountain. The UDC claims they will relocate the fountain to “a location where they are already storing and maintaining a number of other displaced monuments.” The city had not made a decision. [5]


George H. Carsley, sculptor
Margaret Howell Davis Hayes Chapter of the Daughters of the Confederacy (UDC), Sponsors


  1. Furshong, Gabriel. “The First City to Remove and Replace a Confederate Monument.”Yes Magazine, May 9, 2019.
  2. Bridge, Thom. “Protesters arrested as city of Helena removes Confederate fountain.” Missoulian, August 22, 2017.
  3. Hunter, Makoto, Brigham Young University. “Helena, Montana’s Confederate Memorial Fountain.” Intermountain Histories, accessed November 13, 2021.
  4. Drake, Phil. “Helena officials open to discussing Confederate fountain’s fate.” Independent Record, October 8, 2021, accessed November 13, 2021.
  5. Ambarian, Jonathon. “United Daughters of the Confederacy wants Helena memorial fountain returned.” KRTV Great Falls, September 29, 2021, accessed November 13, 2021.


Protesters arrested as city of Helena removes Confederate fountain


September 5, 1916 to August 18, 2017


Patrick Michael (2020), Grislean Palacios (2021)




Granite fountain


HIST 402A (Fall 2020, 2021)


Helena, Montana