Sunday, May 31, 2009

Remembering some of the very hot elements of The Cold War in Wyoming

At home in the family fallout shelter

If you happen to be traversing Wyoming on I-80 this summer, stop in at the Uinta County Museum in Evanston for the traveling exhibit, "The Life Atomic: Growing Up in the Shadow of the A-Bomb.” It opens tomorrow, June 1. Get more info at the Uinta County Museum.

The museum web site notes that

"The Life Atomic" illustrates the impact of the atomic bomb on everyday life through photographs and objects, in ways both serious and light-hearted. From civil defense warnings to B-movie posters and "atomic" toys, "The Life Atomic" shows the many ways the bomb influenced life in the 1950s and early 1960s.

Exhibit panels focus on the development of the bomb, early atomic testing in the American Southwest, civil defense preparations, fallout shelters (see photo), the influence of the bomb on movies and television, “atomic” toys and games, and the impact of the bomb on home d├ęcor.

“The Life Atomic” was developed and is traveled by the Rogers Historical Museum, Rogers, Arkansas. This project was made possible by a grant from the U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services.

Speaking of Cold War relics, you can drop into a real bomb shelter in the basement at the Historic Governor's Mansion in Cheyenne. I toured the place and it really took me back. When I was a lad in the '50s and '60s, we all felt fully protected from the a-bomb with "duck and cover." We practiced often, just in case. Who needed a bomb shelter when you had that?

You can also tour the I.C.B.M. Missile Museum at Warren AFB west of Cheyenne at Fort D.A. Russell Days during the annual Cheyenne Frontier Days celebration the last full week in July. Lots of live MX missiles sit in silos on the prairie. Can't visit those unless you're a missileer.

1 comment:

Ken said...


There are also quite a few abandoned Atlas missile silos in the local area. Most are located on private land. Some are being used for businesses. Those that are completely abandoned present hazards -- so anyone trying to snoop around should be careful.

There is one site located very close to Cheyenne. Just a few miles west, near Granite, WY is the site which is located on the Belvoir Ranch -- the same land that the city of Cheyenne purchased not too long ago.

In Weld County, near Greeley, is an Atlas site that operates as a museum. Contact 970-356-4000 ext. 2020.