Oral History Interview with John H. Toole, circa 1972


John H. Toole


Robert E. Eagle



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Download Transcript of John H. Toole interview (232 KB)


Missoula historian and 1972 Montana Constitutional Convention delegate John H. Toole discusses his involvement in the convention as first vice president. He talks about the role of the first vice president and the responsibilities of each acting committee. He describes the day-to-day aspects of the convention including the voting procedures, drafting procedures and schedule. He describes the process of getting the constitution ratified by Montana citizens and some of the compromises on articles and wording that had to be made in order to ensure it would be ratified. Some of these compromises included adding unicameral legislature and legalized gambling as separate options on the ballot rather than within the body of the constitution. He talks about the significant changes that were made to the constitution including setting up two-board educational system, taking away the state’s sovereign immunity, and eliminating the two-mill levy limitation. He notes that one of the weaknesses of the constitution was the lack of judicial reform. He concludes by discussing the implementation of the new constitution and states that an aspect of a democratic society is the ability to make necessary changes to a constitution as society changes and evolves.


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Document Type

Oral History


Toole, John H.; Eagle, Robert E.; Constitutional conventions; Constitutional history; Constitutional conventions--Montana.; Government reorganization—Montana; Constitutional history--Montana.; Public welfare—Montana.; Montana. Constitution Convention Commission.; Montana. Constitution Revision Commission.; Montana. Constitutional Convention (1889)--History.; Montana. Constitutional Convention (1971-1972); Montana. Constitutional Convention (1971-1972)--History.; Helena (Mont.); Montana--Politics and government--20th century.; University of Montana (Missoula, Mont.). Dept. of Political Science; University of Montana (Missoula, Mont.)—Faculty; Political science--Study and teaching (Higher)--Montana--Missoula

Original Date


Time Period

Twentieth century

Geographic Coverage




Original Collection

1972 Montana Constitutional Convention Oral History Project, OH 346

Holding Institution

University of Montana. Mansfield Library. Archives and Special Collections

Digital Publisher

University of Montana--Missoula. Mansfield Library

Rights Statement

Copyright to this collection is held by the interview participants. Permission may be required for use. For further information pleasecontact Archives and Special Collections at the University of Montana, Mansfield Library.

Rights Holder

a href="http://rightsstatements.org/vocab/InC/1.0/">In Copyright

Oral History Number

OH 346-002

Media Type

Sound; Text

Original Format

1 sound cassette (60 min.): analog + 1 transcript (9 pp.: 28 cm.)

Digital Format

audio/mp3; application/pdf

Run Time

00:42:28 minutes

Local Filename

OH_346_002.mp3; OH_346_002.pdf

Oral History Interview with John H. Toole, circa 1972