Former Wyoming Gov. Mike Sullivan reminisces about his two and a half years as U.S. ambassador to Ireland at a time when the Brexit uncertainty has brought world attention back to the ongoing fragility of the peace in Northern Ireland.
Two other topics that have seen plenty of controversy over the years-- water rights on the Wind River and nuclear missiles at F.E. Warren Air Force Base—are included in WyoHistory.org this month as well.
And finally, March is Women’s History Month. We invite you to scroll down to find links to stories of many women featured on WyoHistory.org.
Gov. Sullivan recalls ambassadorship
Four years after he finished his second term as governor of Wyoming, Casper attorney Mike Sullivan was named U.S. ambassador to Ireland by President Bill Clinton. Sullivan arrived in Dublin in January 1999 at a time when the ink was barely dry on the Good Friday Agreement, signed nine months earlier, bringing an uneasy peace in Northern Ireland after decades of bombings, murders and stalled politics.
Key to the agreement was an essentially open border between Northern Ireland—still part of the United Kingdom—and the Republic. After nearly 21 years of peace, as this oral history is published, the entire arrangement is again in peril as the U.K. contemplates departure from the European Union—Brexit—which may mean the return to a hard border, and with it the return of many old, hard feelings that even now could jeopardize the peace.
This oral history interview was Jan. 8, 2019, at the Casper College Western History Center in Casper, Wyo., by WyoHistory.org Editor Tom Rea. Read the transcript and listen to the audio here.
Native water rights
By treaty, Native Americans in 1868 were reserved land along—and water from—Wyoming’s Wind River. But it would take a century and a half for courts to work out what water was whose—and to begin to define what tribal owners of the water could and couldn’t use their water for. Read more about it in “Native Rights to Wind River Water,” by water-law scholar Anne MacKinnon, former Casper Star-Tribune editor-in-chief and former member of Wyoming Water Development Commission.
Missiles and the F.E. Warren Air Force Base
This new digital toolkit for teachers provides thought-provoking material for classroom study and discussions as well as links to video content. To learn more, visit our Education page at Missiles and the F.E. Warren Air Force Base. For more information and background, read journalist Dan Whipple’s article Wyoming’s Nuclear Might: Warren AFB in the Cold War.
Women's History Month links
- Peggy Simson Curry, Wyoming’s First Poet Laureate, June Downey: Scientist, Scholar and Poet, Casper Author Charlotte Babcock, articles about creative and intelligent women who followed their passions.
- Right Choice, Wrong Reasons: Wyoming Women Win the Right to Vote.
- Grace Raymond Hebard: Shaping Wyoming’s Past, about an important Wyoming historian from the early 20th century.
- Grace Hebard and the Wyoming Home Front in World War I, a digital toolkit about the noted historian and her efforts during World War I.
- Carrie Burton Overton, first female African-American student at the University of Wyoming.
- The Grave of Charlotte Dansie, The Sarah Thomas Grave, The Grave of Elizabeth Paul, The Grave of Nancy Hill, Emigrant Hill and the Elva Ingram Grave, accounts of women and girls who died on the Oregon Trail.
- Peace, War, Land and a Funeral: The Fort Laramie Treaty of 1868 Recounts the story of Spotted Tail’s daughter.
- The Utah War in Wyoming features diarist Elizabeth Cumming, wife of Utah Territorial Governor Alfred Cumming.
- ‘Noted Beauty Coming:’ Suffragist Campaigns Across Wyoming, about Inez Milholland, who helped galvanize women nationwide in their long campaign for the vote.
- Esther Hobart Morris, first woman in Wyoming and the nation to hold public office.
- Amalia Post, early woman juror, defender of women’s rights.
- Estelle Reel, first woman elected to statewide office in Wyoming
- Mary Godat Bellamy, Wyoming’s first woman legislator
- Nellie Tayloe Ross, first female governor in Wyoming and the nation
- Louise Graf, first woman jury foreman in Wyoming
- Thrya Thomson, Wyoming secretary of state 1963-1987
- Verda James, first full-term woman speaker of Wyoming’s House of Representatives
- Liz Byrd, first black woman in Wyoming’s Legislature
- Kathy Karpan, Wyoming secretary of state 1987-1994
Visit our Wyoming History Day page
The theme for the 2018-2019 competition is “Triumph and Tragedy in History.” The Wyoming History Day contest will be held April 14-15, 2019, and the National History Day competition is slated for June 9-13, 2019.
Teachers, students and others interested in the Wyoming History Day contest, which will be held in Laramie April 14-15, 2019, can find more information—including contest dates and links and Wyoming History Sample Topics--by clicking on the “History Day” tab on the orange bar on the WyoHistory.org home page or by visiting https://www.wyohistory.org/wyoming-history-day.