Showing in the Gallery:
Now through May 31st
The Rockpile Museum announces Cowtown Couture, an exhibit featuring apparel of the cowboys, ranchers, homesteaders, and townsfolk of early Gillette and Campbell County. The arrival of the railroad in 1891 greatly boosted the number of people settling in northeastern Wyoming. In 1892, the incorporation of the new town of Gillette brought banks, churches, schools and other amenities to local families. Locally, clothing began to reflect a desire for style as well as the sturdy, functional apparel that was necessary for rugged life in the country. Cowtown Couture features fascinating articles of clothing worn by both the early city folk and rural citizens. Don’t miss this opportunity to experience authentic, century-old local clothing including an 1878 bearskin coat, an intricately beaded dress from the early 1900s, and an array of fashionable hats once seen on the streets of Gillette.
This exhibit will be open in April and May. Visit the Rockpile Museum Monday through Saturday, 9:00 – 5:00 p.m. Admission is free. Please call 307-682-5723 with questions.
The horse played a critical role in the development of the western plains. Horses were essential for transportation, hunting, managing livestock, military protection, and pulling wagons, stagecoaches, and plows to work the land. The Campbell County Rockpile Museum has had a saddle collection since its opening in 1974. In addition to saddles owned by local cowboys, ranchers, and homesteaders, the collection includes saddles and other artifacts made by leather workers in Campbell County. Recently, this exhibit has been renovated and expanded. A saddle maker’s workbench outfitted with the essential tools used to build and repair saddles and harnesses is now on exhibit. A McClellan saddle representative of those used in this region by the U.S. Cavalry from the 1860s to the early 1900s is another recent addition. Other features include a Wyoming Centennial Saddle built by Matt Avery, a century-old stitching horse, a series of tooled squares showing the steps involved in creating a finished piece of tooled leather, videos illustrating the use of various leatherworking tools, and a history of Campbell County saddle makers. Come see the saddles and other leather artifacts that were an integral part of life for the early residents of our county.
View the slides below to see the exhibits you'll encounter while visiting the Campbell County Rockpile Museum. You can watch the slideshow or hover over the picture to use the left and right arrows to browse through the images.
July - December 2013
On July 9th, 2013, the Campbell County Rockpile Museum opened an exhibition titled Women Coal Miners of the Powder River Basin. Featuring the photographs of Colorado artist Annalise Shingler, this exhibit told the story of a handful of women miners from Gillette and Campbell County that have made a life of digging coal. Here in the Powder River Basin, women have been employed at the coal mines since the mid-1970s. The percentage of female miners was initially very low, but increased as more and more large mines opened in the late 1970s and early 1980s. Most figures today state that women make up about 20 percent of all production crews in the coal mines of northeast Wyoming.
Some of the women in the exhibit are trailblazers that have worked for 30 or more years in mining while others are just beginning their careers. Others are from families with multiple generations working in the coal mines. With this exhibit, the Rockpile Museum hoped to shed some light on the hard work and sacrifice that these miners make to support their families and provide energy for our state and our nation.
This exhibit was generously supported by Pearls of the Prairie. Find out more about this arts organization at www.pearlsoftheprairie.org.
April and May 2014
This year marks the 40th Anniversary of the Rockpile Museum’s opening and we are celebrating with a series of events. During the months of April and May, the Rockpile Museum hosted a community-based exhibit showcasing local citizens’ memorabilia from the 1970s. This was a decade of change and contrasts. The exhibit will featured items specific to Gillette and Campbell County people, businesses, organizations, schools, and events as well as general items symbolic of this colorful decade.
Local Sports Exhibit
February - June 2015
Is Gillette a “sports-crazy” town as is often the perception around Wyoming? Do you know the history of athletics in our school system? Now is your chance to find out a little about sports in Campbell County as the museum is excited to announce an upcoming exhibition titled Camel Tradition. Utilizing the museum archives and collections, this exhibit will describe sports in this area from the early twentieth century to the championship boom of the last few decades.
Highlights include photos of early Camel teams, pictures and memorabilia from the 1958 and 1966 boys’ basketball championship teams, and old CCHS jerseys and equipment. Several former Camel athletes and coaches will be highlighted including John Mankin, Gwen Reed, Mike Curry, Ryun Williams, Alicia Craig Shay, John Chick, and Tyler Cox.
Camel Tradition will be on display until the end of May. Join in the “March Madness” and celebrate sports in Campbell County with the Rockpile Museum!