“Has This Student Newspaper Gone Too Far?”

How far is too far when it comes to parody? Young Joe Jacobucci found out when he edited the traditional parody issue of the University of Wyoming student newspaper “The Branding Iron” in 1934. Continue reading

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The Saga of Old Main’s Tower

In 1886, the skyline of Laramie became dominated by a massive stone structure, known today as Old Main on the University of Wyoming campus. The structure’s octagonal stone tower with a steeply pitched conical spire was a town landmark. But, over the years some of Old Main’s original architectural features were removed. The first to go was the stone tower.


The Old Main Building, University of Wyoming under construction in December 1886. American Heritage Center, ah002750.

The writer of the editorial below was one of those not at all happy about the removal of the tower. He or she is unknown, as is the publication in which the editorial appeared. It seems to have been written within four years of the tower being removed, a process that was begun on June 10, 1916.

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“Knowledge is power as never before:” John F. Kennedy’s Natural Resources Philosophy

Conservation of natural resources was a recurring topic during the administration of President John F. Kennedy. In fact, a favorite book of Kennedy’s was Henry David Thoreau’s Cape Cod, published in 1865. While president, Kennedy, a yachtsman, found restoration by sailing the Nantucket Sound waters around sandbars and shoals. Running for president in 1960, Kennedy advocated saving seashores as wildlife refuges and recreational areas.

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Isberg collection digitized

The AHC has completed a grant project to digitize photographs, glass plate negatives, glass lantern slides, and stereo cards from the Isberg Family papers, a collection of a Laramie family with material dating from 1884 to 1930.

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Posted in grants, Local history, newly digitized collections, Sports and Recreation, Uncategorized, Western history, Wyoming history | 1 Comment

Hans Kleiber and the Natural Beauty of Wyoming

Photo of Hans Kleiber in ranger uniform, standing in front of log cabin with felled trees in the background.

Photo of Hans Kleiber. From the Hans Kleiber papers.

The magnificent scenery of Wyoming has inspired many artists, but Hans Kleiber’s work stands out for the medium he used to capture the mountains, wildlife, and people of the state.  Kleiber’s art was often created with line only, etched on zinc or copper plates.  From these plates prints were made. Occasionally the prints were tinted, but many said all they needed to with lines.

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Holocaust Remembrance Day (Yom Hashoah) The Story of Murray C. Bernays

Murray C. Bernays, a name perhaps not known to most, was responsible for constructing the legal framework and procedures for the Nuremberg War Crime Trials after World War II. His work was of utmost importance as it helped bring justice to those found guilty of heinous crimes during WWII. For his work at Nuremberg, Bernays was awarded the Legion of Merit.

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Who Gets License Plate Number 1?

Jacob M. Schwoob standing next to an old car, featuring his Wyoming license plate number 1.

Jacob M. Schwoob with license plate no. 1. Photo from Box 5, Folder title “Schwoob, Jacob M. (and others)-Snapshots.” of the Jacob M. Scwhoob papers.

Jacob M. Schwoob riding horseback in front of a log cabin.

Schwoob on horseback. Photo from Box 5, Jacob M. Schwoob papers.

The State of Wyoming began issuing motor vehicle license plates in 1913.  Who got plate number 1?  The man who wrote the motor vehicle licensing law, state senator Jacob M. Schwoob of Park County. Schwoob continued to apply for, and receive, plate 1 annually until 1929, when he was awarded the number for the term of his life.  The honor recognized not only his authorship of the licensing bill but also his continuing advocacy of good roads for the sake of economic development.

Jacob M. Schwoob was born in Ontario in 1874.  At the age of 18 he immigrated to the United States, arriving first in Buffalo, New York, then moving to Cody, Wyoming, in 1898.  He was business manager of the Cody Trading Company until 1916, when he purchased the store and became its owner. A Republican, he served in the state senate from 1905 until 1913.  He pushed through a law to permit counties to issue bonds for road-building, as well as pressing for the introduction of automobiles into Yellowstone National Park.  Automobiles were officially allowed inside the Park in 1915.

Jacob M. Schwoob sitting on the hood of an old automobile, displaying his number 1 Wyoming license plate.

Schwoob sitting on an automobile, with his no. 1 license plate. From Box 5 of the Jacob Schwoob papers.

Schwoob’s only child, Thornton W. Schwoob, died as a young man in 1928.  Jacob Schwoob died just four years later in 1932.  In 1948 Schwoob’s papers and photographs were in the possession of his grandson, Thornton.  The younger Thornton W. Schwoob donated the materials to the University of Wyoming, where they comprise a valuable record of a time when automobile travel was a new experience for most citizens of the state. To learn more about Jacob Schwoob and his collection at the American Heritage Center, please see the inventory for the Jacob M. Schwoob papers, available here: https://rmoa.unm.edu/docviewer.php?docId=wyu-ah00097.xml.

-D. Claudia Thompson, Processing Manager

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