The new Pompeys Pillar Interpretive Center opened in 2006. Exhibits in the 5,700-square foot center relate the journey of Captain William Clark and his detachment, including Sacagawea and her son Pomp, down the Yellowstone River Valley in 1806. The center also addresses native culture, flora and fauna, the Lewis and Clark Expedition, and the historical legacy of Pompeys Pillar through the changes of the 1800s. A number of J.K. Ralston paintings and sketches are on permanent display.
The BLM purchased Pompeys Pillar in 1991 for its historic significance and its interpretive and recreational potential. The Ralston works were acquired with the property. In 1992, the BLM constructed limited facilities for the protection of resources and the comfort and safety of visitors. Facilities included a small log contact station and a stairway to Clark’s signature and the top of the Pillar.
The Pompeys Pillar Historical Association has worked closely with BLM in the acquisition, operation and development of this site. It is also raised funds to match a congressional appropriation for the construction of the center, and it will help staff the center and bookstore/gift shop.
Additional improvements, consisting of a paved one-half mile entrance road and parking lot, entrance station which can either be staffed or collect fees from an automated teller; over one-quarter mile of walkways, and an amphitheater will be completed by the end of the 2007 season. The additional improvements have been funded by BLM, the Pompeys Pillar Historical Association, the Department of Transportation, Yellowstone County, and the National Park Service.