Wyoming Minute

One-minute audio snapshots of Wyoming.

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Photo Doug Smith via nps.gov/yell

Almost 25 years ago, wolves were reintroduced to Yellowstone National Park. Wolves originally roamed the Greater Yellowstone ecosystem, but, in the 1900s, they were wiped out. Settlers in the West poisoned and killed wolves in such high numbers that the animal was not seen in the area for decades.

Whitney Western Art Museum

Cars were first allowed in Yellowstone National Park in 1915, starting a popular new way to explore the park through auto tourism. In an effort to promote tourism in the park, artists were commissioned by auto tourism companies to help advertise Yellowstone National Park.

Cody Firearms Museum

Tom Tobin was a mountain man and bounty hunter in the late 1800s in Southern Colorado. He is most known for killing the Espinosa outlaws. The Espinosas were tormenting the San Luis Valley in Colorado by allegedly killing more than 30 people. The brothers were killing these men as retaliation for relatives killed during the Mexican-American War. Ashley Hlebinsky, the curator of the Cody Firearms Museum, said the U.S. Army asked Tobin to capture the Espinosa brothers.

McCracken Research Library

Did you ever think that Cody had a connection with the Boston Red Sox? Well, it turns out there is a connection.

Whitney Western Art Museum

Rosa Bonheur was a famous French animal artist during the late 19th century. She's one of the few female artists in the Whitney Western Art Museum collection. Karen McWhorter, the curator, said the collection has many more contemporary women represented.

McCracken Research Library

When Leonard Cody Bell (not related) was nine years old, Buffalo Bill Cody offered him $10,000 if he would keep his hair long until he was 18. By the time Cody Bell was a teenager his hair was 58 inches long. 


Plains Indian Museum Collection NA.202.94

Museums carry objects that unfortunately are not meant to last forever. Rebecca West, the curator of the Plains Indian Museum, said a Lakota sun bonnet in the Plains Indian Museum Collection represents how curators handle these pieces. 


James Doolittle was a general during World War II. He became famous for his raid on Tokyo in 1942 just after Pearl Harbor was bombed. Danny Michael, the assistant curator of the Cody Firearms Museum, said the U.S. wanted to retaliate so Doolittle led an air raid. A lot of his crew was captured or killed, but Doolittle made it back alive. 

Draper Natural History Museum

Late in the spring a couple years back, Leslie Patten went hiking and came upon something pretty spectacular. When she looked more closely, she saw that it was a dead mountain lion. 

Plains Indian Museum

The Salish tribes in western Montana, Idaho and Washington made cradle boards to celebrate newborns. It’s a utilitarian object because it is used as a baby carrier, but they were made for the celebration of the baby. As such, many cradle boards were decorated. 

Gift of Olive and Glenn E. Nielson

In 1876, at the height of the Black Hills Gold Rush, a stagecoach route began between Cheyenne, Wyoming and Deadwood, South Dakota.  

 

When a visitor enters the Whitney Western Art Museum one sculpture might confuse the visitor. Choosing of the Arrow by Henry Kirke Brown might remind people not of the West, but of a classic European sculpture. But Karen McWhorter, the curator of the museum, said it’s actually the first bronze case made in America in 1849. 

Cody Firearms Museum

The Cody Firearms Museum has a machine rifle gun from the early part of the last century that was ahead of its time in looks and functionality. 


McCracken Research Library

The McCracken Research Library has been working to compile historical video footage of natural history events in the Greater Yellowstone Area. 

Parfleche Woman's Beading Kit Chippewa Cree, Rocky Boy Indian Reservation, ca. 1890 Chandler-Pohrt Collection NA.106.203 Most containers in the museum's collections are empty. This one hid its contents for many years until Plains Indian Museum staff gently opened the envelope spring 2019. Wrapped in cloth were small beaded pieces, glass beads, sinew, beading needles, a bone awl, and a thimble.Credit Plains Indian MuseumEdit | Remove

The curator and curatorial assistant of the Plains Indian Museum once noticed an odd odor in one of the museum’s storage areas. This isn’t something that is welcome in museum collections since it usually means something is getting ruined. 

As they were trying to find where the stench was coming from, they noticed a bulky rawhide parfleche envelope. The smell wasn't originating from it. Turns out the smell was from a parfleche that wasn't tanned correctly but they wanted to make sure there wasn't perishable content inside.

Buffalo Bill Museum

Custer’s Last Stand was reenacted thousands of times in the Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show. A poster shows the classic image of Lakota, Cheyenne and Arapaho warriors on horseback surrounding Custer’s men. But Jeremy Johnston, the curator of the Buffalo Bill Museum, said it probably didn’t happen like that.   

Buffalo Bill Center of the West. Museum Purchase. 5.79

When you think of epic Western landscapes, what comes to mind is probably those of Albert Bierstadt. Karen McWhorter, the curator of the Whitney Western Art Museum, said he stood out as a Western painter because he really brought 1800’s East Coast and European audiences to a scene they otherwise couldn’t imagine. 


Cody Firearms Museum

The Cody Firearms Museum has a pretty unique Colt Texas Paterson. The revolver is a repeating firearm with a revolving cylinder with multiple chambers. 

Plains Indian Museum

The Nez Perce Tribe historically was a nomadic tribe that roamed the Plains. The tribe is known for their use of color in beadwork using both geometric and floral designs. 


Buffalo Bill Museum, Garlow Collection

Although the Pony Express only lasted for about a year and half, the mail service has become synonymous with the Old West. The story of riders delivering mail from Saint Joseph, Missouri to Sacramento, California in ten to eleven days at the time was the fastest a letter was ever delivered before electronic communication. 

Draper Natural History Museum

The Clark’s Nutcracker is a high mountain bird located in the Western U.S. The bird is pretty unique for its ability to cache said Corey Anco, the assistant curator of the Draper Natural History Museum. 

Images courtesy the Cody Firearms Museum

The Thompson Submachine Guns was invented in the early 1900s and it was originally meant for the battle field. But it became notorious as the gangster gun because it has been used in some gangster crimes. One of the most well-known is the 1929 Saint Valentine’s Day Massacre.


During World War I, some Winchester Repeating Arms Company employees were eventually exempt from the draft because their skills were essential to the war effort.

Plains Indian Museum

The Mandan, Hidatsa, and Arikara Nation, also known as the Three Affiliated Tribes of the Great Plains were known for being horticultural societies.

Corey Anco

In 2011, former curator of the Draper Natural History Museum Dr. Charles Preston received a surprise phone call. 

Gift of Franklin L. Farnsworth

What can a railroad jack tell us? (A railroad jack is a tool used to change out tires) Well, for the story of Buffalo Bill Cody it depicts a time period that we don’t know as much about compared to his later years. That’s according to Jeremy Johnston, the curator of the Buffalo Bill Museum.

Whitney Western Art Museum

 

In the 1820s, Native American diplomats traveled to Washington D.C. to negotiate peace deals with Americans. During that time period, the Superintendent of Indian Affairs, Thomas L. McKenney, commissioned portraits of hundreds of American Indian leaders.

Plains Indian Museum

The Dakota people are well-known for their use of florals in their embroidery. Around the 1870s, they depicted abstract natural world scenes like stars and flowers.  


MS391.01.001 - MS 391 Jack Rutherford Collection, McCracken Research Library, Buffalo Bill Center of the West

What does Buffalo Bill have to do with ballet? That’s the question Samantha Harper, the archivist at the McCracken Research library, asked herself when she found a photo of Maria TallChief in a Buffalo Bill collection.

Cody Firearms Museum

One of the most “American” firearms is the American Rifle. However, most people generally refer to it as the Penn Rifle or the Kentucky Rifle. That’s according to Danny Michael, the assistant curator at the Cody Firearms Museum.


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