Features

Archives On The Air 4: Who Gets License Plate Number 1?—Jacob M. Schwoob Papers

5 hours ago
American Heritage Center

The State of Wyoming began issuing motor vehicle license plates in 1913. Who got license plate number 1? The man who wrote the motor vehicle licensing law: Park County’s state senator Jacob M. Schwoob.

Archives On The Air 3: Gasoline Gypsies—The Cross-Country Drive Of Grace & Ester Robinson

Jun 20, 2018
American Heritage Center

In the 1920s, the automobile age was in full swing. American women began enjoying unprecedented social freedom by driving cars. The newfound freedom is illustrated by the cross-country drive of Grace Robinson and her sister Ester.

National Museum of Wildlife Art/James Prosek

In recent years, scientists have been astounded to learn how far large animals like elk, pronghorn and mule deer migrate in Wyoming. But a new show at the National Museum of Wildlife Art in Jackson looks at both the great and small creatures that travel to and fro to reach the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. Wyoming Public Radio’s Melodie Edwards sat down with painter and writer James Prosek to talk about evolution, language and whether to name waterfalls.

Archives On The Air 2: Who Was The Virginian? – Owen Wister Papers

Jun 19, 2018
American Heritage Center

Around 1891 western author Owen Wister began to create his most famous character. He created a Southern-born ranch hand who was hardened to the West, yet genteel. The character also voiced Wister’s conservative blue-blooded values. This character came to be known as The Virginian.

Archives On The Air 1: Laramie Inventor Elmer Lovejoy

Jun 18, 2018
American Heritage Center

Laramie’s mechanical genius Elmer Lovejoy designed and built Wyoming’s first automobile in 1895. It was a steam-propelled carriage that carried four people comfortably. It could be driven up to eight miles an hour. Lovejoy’s “horseless carriage” predated Henry Ford’s automobile by several years.

Kamila Kudelska


A new permanent exhibition at the Draper Natural History Museum at the Buffalo Bill Center of the West focuses on golden eagle research but it also looks at how golden eagles have been and still are significant to the Plains Indian people.

Kamila Kudelska

When museums have special exhibitions, what visitors don't know is that it takes years for the exhibit to evolve from a concept to the moment you are standing in front of that famous work of art. The Whitney Western Art Museum at the Buffalo Bill Center of the West just opened its new exhibit featuring the famous Western American artist, Albert Bierstadt. But the process behind securing loans is not so easy.

Rifle was a gift to the Buffalo Bill Museum from Mrs. George T. Beck in 1970.

There are stories, which pass through hearsay but one can never be sure if the story is completely true. The Buffalo Bill Museum at the Buffalo Bill Center of the West was aware of a story behind a certain Winchester Carbine but not until recently were they able to prove it.

National Museum of Wildlife Art/James Prosek

A new exhibit at the National Museum of Wildlife Art in Jackson highlights the artwork of painter and nature writer, James Prosek, one of three people in the show exploring the meaning of animal migration.

Courtesy of the Cody Firearms Museum

The earliest known reference to the Winchester Arms Collection is a letter from Oliver Winchester to R.S. Lawrence in 1871. Oliver Winchester asked to have the Jennings rifle for his collection because it was a link to the development of the Winchester lever action.

Albert Bierstadt—He’s a late 19th-century artist, most well-known for his majestic landscape paintings of the Wind River Range, Yellowstone and the American West. But there's more to him than paintings of grand open spaces. The Buffalo Bill Center of the West in Cody and the Gilcrease Museum in Tulsa, Oklahoma worked together to create an exhibit exploring Bierstadt’s influence on conservation and wildlife management in America. It’s called Albert Bierstadt: Witness to the Changing West. Kamila Kudelska speaks talks to three museum curators as they tell the little-known story of a beloved American artist. 

Artist Estelle Ishigo was one of the few white women that went to a Wyoming Japanese-American internment camp. Estelle and her husband were imprisoned at Heart Mountain in 1942. During their three years at the camp, Estelle painted watercolors portraying the daily life. A new exhibit at Heart Mountain Interpretive Center called The Mountain Was Our Secret displays a collection of Estelle’s work. 

Aaron Linsdau

Have you ever wanted to pack up your bag, leave everyday life behind, and follow in the footsteps of famous polar explorers? Well, author and explorer Aaron Linsdau does just that — trekking solo to remote locations like Alaska, Greenland, and Antarctica. He has also translated his experiences into a career as a motivational speaker and will be speaking at the Wyoming Writers Conference in Dubois in June. Linsdau told Wyoming Public Radio’s Caroline Ballard he first started thinking about becoming an explorer when he picked up backpacking in California.

Harry Jackson Trust

On June 1, over 5,000 works of art by Harry Jackson will be handed over from the family trust to the Harry Jackson Institute. Harry Jackson is best known for his western art, but he also was part of the abstract expressionism movement, among the likes of Jackson Pollock and Joan Mitchell.

Kamila Kudelska

It’s a weird story not often told at museums since it’s against the rules. But at the Whitney Western Museum of Art, there’s one painting visitors can’t resist touching.

Spoken Words 21: Jeffrey Lockwood—Murder On The Fly

May 29, 2018
Cover Photo Jeffrey Lockwood and Ted Brummond, UW photo services

Jeffrey Lockwood continues his “Riley the Exterminator” mystery series, this time as Riley tries to solve a missing person case at the same time California’s agricultural industry is threatened by a Mediterranean fruit fly invasion. Lockwood discusses his love for weaving great storytelling, science, philosophy and crime in these mysteries.

Kamila Kudelska

During the 19th century, Winchester Repeating Arms Company and Colt’s Patent Firearms Manufacturing Company frequently played with each other’s markets. One would manufacture double barrel shotguns another would then import double barrel shotguns. But Colt always had the lever while Winchester had the revolver.

Courtesy of the Japanese American National Museum, Allen Eaton Collection

The “Mountain Was Our Secret” is the title of a new exhibit at Heart Mountain Interpretive Center. Heart Mountain was the site where 14,000 Japanese-Americans were incarcerated from 1942 to 1945.

1996. Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Charles B. Israel of Aspen, Colorado. Buffalo Bill Center of the West.

George Custer is most famous for the battle he did not survive: The Battle of the Little Bighorn. Popularly known as “Custer’s Last Stand,” it took place in Montana Territory against a coalition of Native American tribes. But a new exhibition at the Buffalo Bill Center of the West portrays Custer and his wife, Libby’s, personal possessions in an effort to create a picture not focused on his last battle.

Buffalo Bill Center of the West

This week the second symposium dedicated to firearm museums and collections is being held at the Buffalo Bill Center of the West.

Last year marked the first time firearm collections and museums came together to discuss the industry. There are about two dozen prominent firearm collections and museums in the United States. This year the symposium concentrates on the ethics of firearms in museums.

Kamila Kudelska

The Draper Natural History Museum at the Buffalo Bill Center of the West will open a new permanent exhibition on June 10. The exhibition focuses on the last ten years of research on golden eagle activity in the Bighorn Basin. Golden eagles are a top predator so by studying the top of the food chain, researchers are learning not just about the bird but also about the dynamics of animals they eat and the ecosystem they live in.  

Jonathan Kim / Flickr

Two writing conferences will be held in Wyoming this June. The Wyoming Writers, Inc. Conference will take place in Dubois June 1 through 3, and the Jackson Hole Writers Conference will be held in Jackson June 28 through 30. Topics and workshops include pitching, publishing, manuscript critique, and creative process.

Caroline Ballard

Nearly a quarter of Wyoming’s population is Native American. But how they are portrayed—by Natives and by whites—is complicated.

When a museum receives a mass donation of artifacts, it’s up to the museum staff to document every single object. And this is what happened when the Plains Indian Museum at the Buffalo Bill Center of the West received the Paul Dyke Buffalo Cultural Collection

As part of the 150th anniversary of the city of Laramie, an art group is working to create a community quilt in hopes of promoting civil discourse in the community. Laramie artists June Glasson and Adrienne Vetter recently started the Art and Action effort to teach people how to employ art in political engagement.

Hunter Old Elk


The Plains Indian Museum at the Buffalo Bill Center of the West has partnered with the Creative Indigenous Collective (CIC). A group of Northern Plains indigenous artists created the collective to promote contemporary native art. This is the first time the Plains Indian Museum is partnering with modern artists. 

Former Wyoming Gov. Mike Sullivan and U.S Ambassador to Ireland talks civility in politics and how a Democratic governor can serve two terms as governor in a Republican state. Sullivan was a key participant in the 1998 peace accord in Northern Ireland and named the 2016 Citizen of the West.


W. Kamau Bell

W. Kamau Bell is a socio-political comedian and host of the hit Emmy Award-nominated CNN docu-series, United Shades of America. W. Kamau Bell talks about his life work as a political comedian and what that means for him personally and professionally.

Dana Arbaugh

Zarif Khan, also known as Hot Tamale Louie. The idea for the sculpture came from Dana Arbaugh whose wife remembers buying hamburgers from him for 25 cents. Her father was friends with Khan. Dana Arbaugh commissioned the sculpture and said Khan’s story embodies the American dream.

Megan Goodner

Award-winning musician Gaelynn Lea is a one-woman show. The NPR’s 2016 Tiny Desk Concert winner plays whimsical and haunting violin lines, looping them while she sings both hopeful and somber lyrics over top. As she sings, Lea holds the violin in an original way—upright, like a cello—to accommodate her small frame.

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