Wyman Living History Museum - Craig, CO - a century of Colorado history in historical buildings


Wyman Living History Museum is located at 94350 Highway 40 in Craig, Colorado. Lou Wyman founded the Wyman Museum in 1949. He was filling a barrel with water for the sheep herders when he saw a 1932 Lincoln that had been abandoned. He purchased it for $15 and began his collection. The Wyman Living History Museum opened in late 2006.

Visitors to the museum get to see a century of American history and are sure to see things they have never seen before. There is a complete collection of Colorado license plates, twelve to two hundred pound chain saws and blades one to five feet in length. Robert Ouellette donated the collection of chainsaws. He was from East Long Meadow, Massachusetts and ran a chainsaw repair shop in addition to collecting them.

Lou Wyman's father had a homestead close to Milk Creek during 1905; in the later winter of 1911 he skied over and purchased the property on the Williams Fork River that Lou grew up on. In 1920 the barn that is now a museum was built by Lou's father. David, Lou's son, took the barn to the property of the museum site piece by piece and rebuilt it. In the future this barn will house horses so visitors can watch hay being cut and baled.

The blacksmith shop from a homestead that Ordway Mellon claimed in Walden, Colorado; in 2004 the blacksmith shop was donated by Mr. and Mrs. Veneta Haworth. The Wyman Living History Museum is in the Yampa Valley just a few minutes away from both Hayden and Craig. A highlight of the museum is the Pagoda Store.

The Pagoda Store at the museum has a variety of goods that have been available during the last century. The store which was originally in Pagoda was moved to the current location at Williams Fork River during 2004. The body and roof were moved separately because of the power lines; the facility was put back together by Kenny Harris once it reached its destination. In the late 1800's the Pagoda was established as a small homesteading community on highway 317 near Williams Fork River. James A. Bennet opened a part of his home as the first post office in 1889. J.W. Hugus built the Pagoda Store during 1906. The building's construction used sawed logs and measured 25' by 40' with a cellar.

When Pagoda Store was completed the post office was moved into the building. The store served as a place for the community to gather. The facility was also used to hold weddings and elections. The front counter of the store still has spur marks on it from visiting cowboys. The back of the store which was once a storage room now holds handmade items such as crafts and local artworks from areas of the Yampa Valley. The store is open every day with the exception of major holidays.

Anyone in the areas of Craig, Colorado with even the slightest interest in history should make it a point to visit the Wyman Living History Museum.

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