U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR
BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT NEWS RELEASE
National Historic Trails Center
|Release Date: 01/24/12|
"Black Cowboys: The Forgotten Range Riders"
The National Historic Trails Interpretive Center (NHTIC) is celebrating Black History Month with an exhibit titled "Black Cowboys: The Forgotten Range Riders.” The exhibit opens on Feb. 3, and will continue throughout February.
The exhibit was created by Jimmy Simmons, a Casper resident and former bull rider. Simmons is also the president of the Casper branch of the NAACP. The temporary exhibit features over 20 images of black cowboys from Wyoming and throughout the west.
Also included in the exhibit is research by Todd Guenther, assistant professor of history and anthropology at Central Wyoming College. Guenther, an expert on black ranchers, provided research on former Wyoming rancher Jim Edwards. Edwards was featured in an article referring to him as the “Greatest Negro Cattle Rancher in All the West” by Ebony Magazine.
By the late 1880s, thousands of black men worked as cowboys. According to some estimates, in the early American West, approximately 25 percent of the cowboys were black. However, images of black cowboys in movies, television, and books are scarce, and give the false impression that African Americans were not cowboys.
Simmons said that there are very few exhibits in the United States focused on telling the story of black cowboys and their contributions to western history. “This could be the first exhibit of this magnitude in Wyoming,” Simmons said.
For more information, contact Alex Rose at the NHTIC, (307) 261-7780.
The NHTIC is a part of the BLM's National Landscape Conservation System (NLCS). The areas of the NLCS are specifically designed to conserve, protect and restore the exceptional scientific, natural, cultural, ecological, historical, and recreation values of these treasured landscapes.
The NHTIC is a public-private partnership between the BLM and the National Historic Trails Center Foundation. The facility is located at 1501 N. Poplar Street, Casper, Wyo. The Center is currently operating on winter hours, and is open Tuesday – Saturday, 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land, the most of any Federal agency. This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. In Fiscal Year (FY) 2011, recreational and other activities on BLM-managed land contributed more than $130 billion to the U.S. economy and supported more than 600,000 American jobs. The Bureau is also one of a handful of agencies that collects more revenue than it spends. In FY 2012, nearly $5.7 billion will be generated on lands managed by the BLM, which operates on a $1.1 billion budget. The BLM's multiple-use mission is to sustain the health and productivity of the public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. The Bureau accomplishes this by managing such activities as outdoor recreation, livestock grazing, mineral development, and energy production, and by conserving natural, historical, cultural, and other resources on public lands.
National Historic Trails Center 1501 North Poplar Street Casper, WY 82601
|Last updated: 01-24-2012|
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