Wyoming Stories

Walt Niekamp and his wife, Dorothy, lived in Casper years ago where they taught in the Natrona County schools. He has never forgotten Wyoming’s hospitality and landscape. Walt describes how his love for Wyoming, as well as his own career in media, inspired him to support Wyoming Public Media.

Micah Schweizer

Murray "Murf" Self grew up in Centennial where his father Pat ran the Old Corral Hotel & Steakhouse. When Pat was eighteen years old, he started receiving a money from the VA on account of his own father’s death in World War I. This windfall marked the beginning of Pat Self’s tumultuous life with fancy cars.

Have you ever wondered why so many small towns have turned their old train depots into museums? In a story about his mother’s quest to open an interpretive center in Centennial, Self explains how.

StoryCorps

This summer, StoryCorps set up a booth in Cheyenne to record Wyomingites interviewing one another and sharing their stories.

Today, we hear from two members of one of Wyoming’s most famous families.  Milward Simpson, the grandson of former Governor and U.S. Senator Milward Simpson, interviews his father Pete Simpson, a noted historian, educator, Republican nominee for Governor, and former legislator.  They begin their conversation talking about Pete’s parents.  

Phil Round is a guitarist and singer from Jackson Hole.  He’s a member of the fabled Stagecoach Band, which holds down a weekly Sunday night gig and dance at the Stagecoach Bar in Wilson. Phil shares some early memories from the bar with his son, Wilden.

WPM Strengthens Cultural Affairs Reporting

Feb 5, 2014
Micah Schweizer

Micah Schweizer, an award winning radio producer from Indiana, joined the staff as the WPM Cultural Affairs and Production Director. 

Schweizer’s task is a broad one—he reports on anything and everything cultural, and includes orchestras, ensembles, bands, museums, artists, writers, among others.  Online programs, such as Single Shot Live, are part of his beat.   As an introduction to Wyoming, he was assigned the task of driving through the state and recording people for the Wyoming Stories series.

In May of 2013, members of The Wyoming Cultural Trust Fund board announced that Wyoming Public Media’s new oral histories project had been awarded a $25,000 grant to build its Wyoming Stories program. The program was kicked off in July, when the nationally acclaimed StoryCorps rolled its MobileBooth into the parking lot of the Laramie County Public Library in Cheyenne.

Stories from Jackson Hole about historic skiing, an indestructible skirt, and overcoming obstacles.

Subscribe to the Wyoming Stories podcast here.

Powder Magazine

Bill Briggs, a Dartmouth graduate from Maine, moved to Jackson Hole and became North America’s “father of extreme skiing.” In Jackson he worked as a climbing and ski guide for many years, driven by his own passion and encouraged by the supportive outdoor community to surmount the insurmountable. In 1971, Briggs was the first person ever to descend the Grand Teton on skis, a feat most considered to be impossible.  His friend Spark M asks him to describe the experience.

Micah Schweizer

Jackson resident Charlie Thomas recounts a local raft tour company owner's against-all-odds attempts to deliver 'float-o-graphs' to his rafting customers.

Summer 2014 Community Recordings Schedule

Jan 24, 2014

Laramie: July 13 & 14 - Jubilee Days – Laramie Plains Museum

(To record your Wyoming Story in Laramie, click here.)

Micah Schweizer

Bert Raynes, a distinguished naturalist in Jackson Hole, tells the story of how he became interested in wildlife. Bert has published many books about nature, and he continues to write a column titled “Far Afield” in the Jackson Hole News and Guide newspaper. Fellow Jackson resident Rebecca Huntington interviews him.

Micah Schweizer

Teffany Fegler coordinates the University of Wyoming’s  Student Educational Opportunity Center in Ethete, WY. The daughter of two educators, she continues her family's legacy by helping students achieve the dream of going to college.

Micah Schweizer

Donna Robeson’s great grandmother came to South Pass in 1868.  She was a converted Mormon from Scotland and married English immigrant Richard Sherlock.  They heard there was going to be a big gold strike, so they came to seek their fortunes in mining.  This dream didn’t quite pan out.  Instead, the family started hotel and ranching businesses to earn a living.  Donna tells historian Susan Layman what she remembers from her childhood, at the ranch and with her aunt and uncle in the hotel.

Micah Schweizer

Pam Spencer-Hockett was one of Wyoming's first woman architects. The cabin she built with her husband in Atlantic City ties into her family's pioneer heritage.

Wyoming Stories Community Recordings in Jackson

Dec 23, 2013
Jen Faulkner

Jackson Listeners... Wyoming Public Media would like to record your Wyoming Story at the Teton County Library on Friday, January 3 rd.

To reserve a recording time, visit the registration siteJackson Wyoming Stories Registration .

The Wyoming Public Radio news team offers some holiday memories.

Subscribe to the Wyoming Stories podcast here.

P. Solomon Banda, Associated Press

Sergio Maldonado is a Mexican-Arapaho who grew up on the Wind River Indian Reservation outside of Lander, Wyoming.  He now teaches at Central Wyoming College in Riverton.  In these two stories, Sergio talks about his experience with the Arapaho and Shoshone tribes.  His personal history informs his understanding of Native identity.

Wyoming Stories Community Recordings - CENTENNIAL

Dec 9, 2013
Photo: Bill Cooley

CENTENNIAL Listeners!
Wyoming Public Media will be at the Centennial Library on Wednesday, December 18th and Thursday, December 19th to capture your Wyoming Story or favorite Holiday Memory.

Click here to view Wyoming Stories gathered from around the state.

Micah Schweizer

Tom Duncan grew up in Lander.  He comes from a family of Scottish immigrants that settled in Wyoming in the 1880s.  In 1900, Duncan’s grandfather trailed 5000 sheep to Fremont County, where he began a ranch along the western border of the Wind River Indian Reservation.  Duncan tells the family story of their Native American neighbor, Togwotee, for whom Togwotee Pass is named.

In honor of Veterans Day, stories from the Vietnam and Iraq Wars.

Subscribe to the Wyoming Stories podcast here.

Wyoming Stories: Community Recordings in Cheyenne

Nov 25, 2013

Listeners in Cheyenne! Wyoming Public Media will be at the Laramie County Library on December 9th to capture your Wyoming Story or favorite Holiday Memory.

To reserve a recording time, visit the registration site: Wyoming Public Media: Wyoming Stories - Cheyenne 

Micah Schweizer

Jason Williams is an Iraq War veteran from Lander. In 2004, he was part of the 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit deployed to Najaf.

Micah Schweizer

Steve Gyorvary first came to South Pass, Wyoming in 1978. Ever since, he’s been working as a geologist and hard rock gold miner. He tells how he got into gold mining and acquired his own mine.

StoryCorps

For Veteran’s Day we have a StoryCorps segment of veteran Ted Gostas telling his wife Jody Gostas about being taken as a prisoner of war in the Vietnam War and his years in solitary confinement. Gostas remained a P-O-W for 5 years, 5 months, and 15 days. Of those captured in Northern Vietnam, he was one of only four POWs to stay in solitary confinement for more than four years. 

Micah Schweizer

Ruth Michels lives in Cody, but she grew up in Laramie. Here, she remembers a childhood encounter with a black bear at Yellowstone National Park.

Micah Schweizer

Meeteetse residents Jim and Joan Dunrud remember Jim's parents' famous neighbor at the Double D Ranch, Amelia Earhart.

Larry Struempf

Laramie resident Larry Struempf recalls the challenge of learning to read as a college student. He now teaches at Laramie County Community College in Laramie and is working on his doctorate.

Micah Schweizer

Eric Quade remembers one of his teachers at Torrington High School. Since then, Eric has received a PhD in mathematics, which he now teaches at Laramie County Community College in Laramie.

Stories about domestic abuse, burlesque dancing, Buffalo Bill’s chef, and learning to read.

Subscribe to the Wyoming Stories podcast here.

StoryCorps

We’re going to hear now from a woman who was blind for the first 38 years of her life. At that point, a doctor told her he could make her see. After four surgeries, she finally gained her vision.

The woman’s name is Pat Logan, and we’ll hear a conversation she had with Dave Stratton, the chaplain for the Program for All Inclusive Care for the Elderly, in Cheyenne. The interview was recorded as part of StoryCorps, a project that records conversations between loved ones.

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