#sourcesaturday: Colorado Springs Pioneer Museum and Archive (Colorado Springs, CO)

Caption: George Catlin, Wild Horses at Play, 1834-1837, oil on canvas, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of Mrs. Joseph Harrison, Jr., 1985.66.499


The Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum has collections and exhibitions that focus on regional history of the Pike’s Peak area. In the next years, they will be opening three major exhibitions: Palmer, Cultural Crossroads, and the Sesquicentennial of Colorado Springs. A dynamic mapping project in the Story of Us exhibit highlights “R” for the original “Riding Master” of Colorado Springs.

CSPM has over 6,500 cubic feet of archival materials, including over 80,000 historic photographs (horses digitized — plus many, many more photographs that are not digitized). In these collections are a number of archival resources that may be of interest to equine topics for Western History and Indigenous Studies:

  • Examples of saddles in the artifact collection
  • Francis W. Cragin Collection (database link and finding aid/transcription link), a professor
  • General William Jackson Palmer papers, an American civil engineer, soldier, and industrialist
  • Winfield Scott Stratton Collection, an American prospector and capitalist
  • Virginia and Gilbert McClurg Collection, founder of the Colorado Cliff Dwellings Association (later Mesa Verde National Park)
  • Papers of various early pioneers such as Anthony Bott, A.Z. Sheldon,  Henry Templeton, David McShane, Irving Howbert, M.S. Beach, and S.M Buzzard




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