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February 27, 2009

   Lesley A. Collins

New Temporary Women’s Exhibit at 
National Historic Trails Interpretive Center

The National Historic Trails Interpretive Center (NHTIC) is recognizing Women’s History Month with a new temporary exhibit titled "The Fortitude of Women on the Trails." The exhibit opens March 2, 2009, and will continue throughout the month.

Women traveling the trails were often forced to break from social norms to participate in what society labeled as men’s work. Women of the trail yoked cattle, drove wagons, collected firewood, poured bullets, spoke out in public meetings, made scientific discoveries, practiced medicine, and then performed all the daily women’s duties such as cooking, washing, and caring for the children. Women showed fortitude through their hard work, the loss of family members, and their survival of the journey."The women of this era were amazing in what they endured and the emotional and physical strength they showed while enduring it," said Stacey Moore, a NHTIC employee. "I could never care for five children while walking fifteen miles a day."

The temporary exhibit features a day in the life of a woman traveler, examples of women’s clothing, and diary quotes.

The NHTIC is a public-private partnership between the Bureau of Land Management and the National Historic Trails Center Foundation. The facility is located at 1501 N. Poplar Street, Casper, WY. Winter hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

The BLM manages more land – 258 million acres – than any other Federal agency.  This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 12 Western States, including Alaska.  The Bureau, with a budget of about $1 billion, also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation.  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.