The Wyoming State Records Advisory Board (SHRAB) is providing funding for five new projects that will make photographs, letters, interviews, and videos of Wyoming’s history easily accessible online. These grants are made available through the Wyoming SHRAB by the National Historical Publications and Records Commission.
Fort Caspar Museum Association in Casper received funding necessary to mount nearly half of their 10,000 collection scans online. These historical photographs and documents depict Casper, Natrona County, and Central Wyoming. They will do this using a PastPerfect Online portal on their website.
The Hot Springs County Historical Museum & Cultural Center in Thermopolis plans to describe and scan 300 photographs of the Grass Creek oil camp, including the ghost town of Ilo, from the 1920s. These photos were donated by local resident, Minnian Richardson, in twenty-two scrapbooks which also include maps, letters, and clippings.
The Homesteader Museum of Powell will digitize 175 cassettes of oral history interviews from the “Strugglers,” homesteading families in the Shoshone Reclamation Project area, and other early white settlers throughout the Big Horn Basin. They will make the interviews, some including video, available on their website via PastPerfect Online.
The Heart Mountain Wyoming Foundation of Powell will digitize audio and video cassette recordings from the Frank Emi collection. Emi led the Fair Play Committee, the largest organized draft resistance movement in any of the Japanese internment camps, protesting military service for men whose civil liberties were being denied by their incarceration in the camps. Also included will be oral histories and an Honor Roll dedication for the Site.
The Wyoming State Archives in Cheyenne will use grant funds to organize and make more easily accessible a large set of documents related to the Big Horn General Stream Adjudication. This legal case, which decided water rights claims submitted by 20,000 tribal and other groups, was settled in 2014. It contains thousands of documents which are still requested by a variety of interested parties, but is not yet efficiently organized or presented online.
Many of these groups plan to upload these records to the Digital Public Library of America (DPLA).
The Wyoming SHRAB promotes the identification, preservation and dissemination of the state’s historical records, by encouraging and supporting ongoing training programs for state, tribal and local governments, local repositories, organizations, and others involved in records care in Wyoming. The program is administered by the Wyoming State Archives, part of the Department of State Parks and Cultural Resources.