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U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR
BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT NEWS RELEASE
Trails Center
 
Release Date: 06/17/13
Contacts: Lesley A. Elser    
  307-261-7603    

Trails Center Announces Summer Afternoon Programs on Pioneer and Wyoming History


The National Historic Trails Interpretive Center (NHTIC) is hosting summer afternoon programs on pioneer and Wyoming history.  The 45-minute programs are free and open to the public.

  •  Bruce Berst, as a snake oil salesman, attempting to sell a miracle tonic at the Trails Center. 
    Bruce Berst, as a snake oil salesman, attempting to sell a miracle tonic at the Trails Center.  Photo courtesy of the Casper Star-Tribune.
    June 30, 1 p.m. Civil War and Frontier Soldiers of the 1860s
    During the 1860s, Civil War and frontier soldiers were faced with many obstacles. Bruce Berst, living historian and Trails Center volunteer, will discuss the harsh conditions imposed on Civil War soldiers and frontier infantrymen. Many artifacts from the time period will be displayed.
  • July 6, 1 p.m. Pioneer Trail Routes and Geology
    Pioneer trail routes were determined by the geology of the land, such as winding rivers and rugged mountains. Pioneers overcame obstacles that led to the establishment of communities and commerce along the routes. Mike Sheets, a member of the Wyoming Geological Association, will discuss the geological formations that contributed to the establishment of trail routes.
  • July 7, 1 p.m. Near Death in the Desert: The Story of Sarah Royce
    On April 30, 1849, Sarah Royce left her eastern Iowa home to travel across the continent, seeking the riches of California. Her family left in a covered wagon, and faced cholera, dangerous river crossings, stampedes and more. Lisa Thalken will discuss the arduous journey of a pioneer mother and her family.
  • July 13, 1 p.m. Sweet Confections and Pioneer Trail Cooking
    Sweet preparations and scrumptious treats have been on the menu for centuries. Despite primitive conditions, the pioneer cook could still turn out wonderful recipes. Jean Smart will prepare tasty treats such as fry bread with cinnamon and sugar, and pretzels dipped in chocolate.
  • July 14, 1 p.m. Currency on the Frontier
    During the mid-1800s, soldiers and civilians preferred to be paid in coins instead of bills. At times, bills were not honored at banks and their value was sometimes worthless. Nic Skalicky will discuss currency on the frontier.
  • July 20, 1 p.m. Frontier Medicine: Miracle Cures or Quackery?
    As pioneers traveled west, many of them suffered from various diseases and illnesses.
    Bruce Berst will present a first person account of the typical medicine man selling his miracle cures to alleviate everything from ingrown toenails to baldness.
  • July 21, 1 p.m. Fur Trade and the Great Rendezvous
    Between 1824 and 1840, the fur trade helped expand the United States from the Missouri River to the Pacific Coast. It created the first truly American iconic figure, the mountain man, and helped introduce the world to the Plains Indians. Lyle Konkol will discuss the importance of the fur trade to American history.
  • July 27, 1 p.m. Smugglers Delight!
    Many journals of pioneer women reveal the mischief of smuggling items of importance into wagons. Jean Smart will share stories about these mischievous pioneer women and their keepsake items.
  • July 28, 1 p.m. Wyoming Women: Esther Hobart Morris and Cattle Kate
    From voting and holding public office to land ownership and lynching, the story of Wyoming’s women is colorful. Kylie McCormick will discuss equality in early Wyoming including Esther Hobart Morris and Cattle Kate.
  • August 3, 1 p.m. Tall Tales or Truth? Mountain Men Stories
    Trails Center volunteer Nic Scalicky will share the fascinating true and mythical stories of three famous mountain men: John Colter, Jim Bridger and John C. Fremont.
  • August 10, 1 p.m. The Great Oregon Migration of 1843
    What motivated some 900 American citizens to walk overland to the Oregon country in the summer of 1843? Where did they assemble, who were their leaders, and how did they know what route to follow? Trails Center employee Reid Miller will commemorate the 170th anniversary of their journey in 2013.
  • August 17, 11 a.m. Roho Delgado: Military Soldier and Galvanized Yankee
    After being captured at the Battle of Antietam in 1862, “Private” Delgado, a prisoner of war and Confederate soldier, was given the choice of staying put, or going out west as a “Galvanized Yankee” to protect the telegraph lines. Daniel Mattern will present the life and times of Delgado.
  • August 17, 1 p.m. Sir, Yes Sir! Military Recruitment During the 1860s
    Daniel Mattern will discuss recruitment, enlistment and the physical examinations required to become a soldier during the 1860s. Kids, are you ready for your uniform?
  • August 24, 1 p.m. Here Comes the Pony!
    The story of the Pony Express has fascinated people ever since the first riders were mounted in April 1860, heading west from St. Joseph, Missouri, and east from San Francisco, California. Members of the National Pony Express Association (NPEA) will share this remarkable story. Pony Express riders, horses, and mochillas will be on hand.
  • August 31, 1 p.m. The Great Oregon Migration of 1843
    What motivated some 900 American citizens to walk overland to the Oregon country in the summer of 1843? Where did they assemble, who were their leaders, and how did they know what route to follow? Trails Center employee Reid Miller will commemorate the 170th anniversary of their journey in 2013.

For more information, contact Jason Vlcan 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 seasonal hours, and is open Tuesday – Sunday, 8:00 a.m. to 5 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. The BLM's mission is to manage and conserve the public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations under our mandate of multiple-use and sustained yield. In Fiscal Year 2013, the BLM generated $4.7 billion in receipts from public lands.
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Trails Center   1501 North Poplar Street      Casper, WY 82601  

Last updated: 06-17-2013