The Hoofprints of the Past Museum has seen a steady stream of visitors this summer. Travelers from all over the country, and surprisingly quite a few Europeans have strayed from I-25 into the museum. We really appreciate the efforts of the local merchants and Chamber of Commerce who direct them our way. Many also come to see the Chris Ledoux Memorial Park. The reviews of the museum have been very positive, and many visitors are surprised to find such a great museum in our little town. According to the director, the visitor numbers so far for June and July are higher than last year, which is great news.
John Tinnin is a regular face around the museum. With a number of old buildings to maintain and new improvements and projects on the
property, his carpenter skills have been an invaluable contribution to the museum. From chinking to staining, landscaping to minor repairs or even building display cases, John is performing important work at the museum. In addition, his work is impeccable. He recently constructed a trash enclosure, for which he donated the materials and labor. There have been a number of volunteer carpenters over the years at the museum, such as Jiggs James, Chuck Taffner and too many others to name, but John will take his place beside them in the Hall of Hoofprints Carpentry Fame. Thank you John!
The Museum held a pre-opening open house on May 29th to share recently completed new displays. With the addition of two tall wood and glass cases, constructed by John Tinnin, the museum was able to reorganize and rearrange existing displays to better display items in the collection. Recently received new artifacts and display signage were added, while existing collection items were rearranged more precisely by topic and historical chronology. New sections/displays on the the Bozeman Trail and Fort Reno were created, and old displays on the Outlaws and Johnson County War were expanded with some great new items added to the collection.
We still have room for some very special historical items, and are particularly looking for anything connected with local outlaws, the Bozeman Trail, the Townsend Fight, local trappers, other local early individuals and participants in the Johnson County War. Please contact the museum if you would like to discuss placing an artifact on loan to the museum.
If you were unable to make the open house during this very busy time of year, we hope you will still stop by sometime soon. Our hours are Monday through Saturday from 9:00-5:00, and Sundays from 1:00-5:00.
We would like to thank the Johnson County Recreation District for assisting with the cost of the cases.
The 2016 Hole in the Wall Tour held on June 11th was another successful fundraiser and an enjoyable day spent in the Hole in the Wall country. We could not do it without the support of so many, and would like to thank the following speakers, volunteers, and landowners for making the tour possible:
- Historical Speakers: Colin Taylor, Dwayne Christensen, Bill Betensen, and Brock Hanson
- Landowners: Crago Family, Dave and Cindy Soppe, Gosney Ranch, Wold Ranch and Reichendieffers, Larry Vignerolli
- Lunch/Breakfast Ladies: Robin Petty, Susan Anderson, Dixie McIntyre, Lois Summer, Cheryl Summer, and Paula Hanson
- Porta-Pottie Driver: Gordon Herring
- EMT’s: Casey Cheser and sister Mandy
- Morning Set up: Raymon Turk, Becky Renkert, Bill McIntyre, Betty and Bob Furnival
- Drivers/Helpers on the Tour: Bill McIntyre, Jim Anderson, John Hanson, Donna and Tom Pfielsticker
- Dean Lund for fixing the roads the last two years so they were fine this year due to his work the previous years
Mark Moore spoke about his ancestor Lee Moore, to a group of about 40 attendees at the museum on February 21st. The talk was well enjoyed by the group, as Lee Moore led a fascinating life in historic times. We will be sharing more about Lee Moore a future museum display and museum newsletter.
The museum has added some new tall, full glass front, preservation quality display cases built by our carpenter/volunteer, John Tinnin. The additional vertical case space will allow the museum to better display certain items and create new topical displays. All historical artifacts in the collection, as well as some new artifacts recently received, will be on display at the museum with some new configurations and additional signage. An Open House is planned in May for people to see the changes.
Will be held on February 21st, 2:00 P.M. at the museum.
The Hoofprints of the Past Museum is pleased to have former Linch resident Mark Moore as our annual speaker this year. Mark has researched his ancestor Lee Moore, who was involved in the Johnson County War, and will present his findings. He will also speak generally about the Moore family history in the Kaycee area.
Just prior to the presentation, the Hoofprints of the Past Museum board will share a brief 2015 Annual Report on the museum and its activities followed by a vote on board members whose terms are expiring and renewing.
Cookies and coffee will be served at the event. We hope you will join us!
The 2016 Hole in the Wall Tour has been scheduled for June 11th. The tour provides a rare glimpse of the old west, taking visitors on a beautiful and historic guided journey through the famous Red Wall country near Kaycee retracing the paths of famed outlaws, lawmen and cowboys, with stories and narration along the way from knowledgeable historians.
Guests on the Hole in the Wall tour will travel from Kaycee to the historic Hole in the Wall Valley where many notorious outlaws avoided the law, including Butch Cassidy, the Sundance Kid, Kid Curry, and other locally famous outlaws. The tour will retrace the sites where the Wild Bunch stayed after the Wilcox Train Robbery while hiding from the posse, see where Sheriff Deane was murdered by the Hole in the Wall gang, and walk the Hole in the Wall cabin site, the homestead where the outlaws traded horses, and up the Hole in the Wall gap. Explore the roots of the outlaw period in the accusations of rustling of the Johnson County War at the site where Champion and Ray were murdered in 1892. As a side note, travelers will see the Sioux trail, and learn the stories of other old western characters and outlaws in the region.
On September 12th the museum and a busload of attendees had an enjoyable day on the Johnson County War Tour. The tour was narrated by historian and author of Wyoming Range War, John W. Davis and local historian Brock Hanson. It began at the KC Cabin Fight site and concluded at the TA Ranch with additional stops at the Ranger Jones and John A. Tisdale assassination sites. We are grateful for the support of the attendees on this fundraiser, as well as the speakers and landowners who made the tour possible. Thank you!
The Johnson County War tour on August 18th, 2018 allows attendees to travel by bus the approximate route of the “Invaders” in their fateful attack on the “Rustlers” in April 1892, learning about the war and stopping at various sites of historical significance along the way.
Stops include the KC Cabin Fight site, where Nate Champion made a heroic stand against overwhelming odds, Plunkett’s Horse Ranch where the Invaders changed horses, the Smith homestead site where a near ambush of the Invaders almost occurred, the historic 28 Ranch where Invaders rested their horses, and the TA Ranch where the final battle occurred. The tour will also stop at the assassination sites of John. A. Tisdale and Ranger Jones, whose murders occurred in the months leading up to the war, foreshadowing the events of 1892.
The historical guides narrating the journey are John W. Davis and Brock Hanson. Davis is a lawyer and author of “Wyoming Range War” which relates the Johnson County War from a legal vantage using a large number of public documents from the period. Brock Hanson is a 4th generation local historian whose family lived through the war and documented the historic events with interviews of the various people involved in the war.
The tour will be held on Saturday, August 18th, beginning in Kaycee at 9:00 AM (with an AM check-in time of 8:30 AM) and ends at approximately 3:00 PM. Lunch is included the ticket price of $85, which must be purchased in advance due to limited space on the bus.
The Hoofprints of the Past Museum is a 501(3)c non-profit organization dedicated to preserving and sharing Kaycee and Johnson County history.
To register: Click Here
If you are interested in receiving a flyer with next year’s tour date, please complete form here.