New museum coming to Cody - KULR8.com | News, Weather & Sports in Billings, Montana

New museum coming to Cody

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Cody Wyoming will soon have a new museum. It is housed in one of the oldest structures in town.

Tourists saw a field of American flags in Cody every June for the last few years. But, the flags were not just a patriotic display. This Field of Honor was created to raise money for Cody’s Heritage Museum at the 110 year old Demaris House downtown.

The Vice President of the Cody Heritage Museum Board, Lynn Houze explained, “The very first meeting happened in January of 2007…with interested people who wanted to see a local history museum.”

Cody already has five museums at the Center of the West, just a few blocks from the Demaris House. So, why open another museum?

Houze answered, “The Buffalo Bill Center of the West does not really cover the history of the town of Cody.”

Which is colorful. Houze said the area used to belong to the Crow Indians.

“This was Crow Treaty land and whites couldn’t come in until the Laramie treaty of 1868…”

The new museum in the old house will tell the story of the early settlers, and of the town’s creation.

Houze explained, “They formed a company called the Shoshone Land and Irrigation company, formed over in Sheridan”

Houze said the investors contacted William F. Cody through his son-in-law.

She said, “He lent his name, he invested, and he also invested, and he was also instrumental in getting other people to invest”

There will be many stories to tell in the 900 square foot building on Cody’s main street. Houze said large murals will cover the walls. But the board is hoping locals will chip in once again, with historic articles, like an old, old bottle she pulled out of a box.

Physical Therapy Technician Terry Tarbett gave it to the museum, because, “It doesn’t belong in my oak secretary where I am the only person who sees it.”

Tarbett donated an 88 year old bottle that held natural mineral water from the Sweetwater spring 35 miles west of Cody in what is now the Shoshone National Forest. The “Sweetwater” was bottled and sold by a man named Kid Wilson: which is another history story.

Tarbett said, “There’s a lotta people who have things who don’t realize what they are.”

The museum board is asking those people to donate those items to the Cody Heritage Museum, to help tell the story of Cody, the town, and the surrounding area.

Houze said the Cody Heritage Museum will probably open to the local community in September, and to the general public next spring. 

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