Museums educates visitors about area

Sure, outdoor recreation is abundant in Northwest Colorado. Hunting, hiking and fishing opportunities are everywhere.

But what if visitors want to take it easy one day and hang out inside?

If that's the case, the Museum of Northwest Colorado in Craig offers a chance for indoor recreation and a chance to learn something about the region.

Plus, it's free.

Located at the corner of Yampa Avenue and Sixth Street, the museum features a wide variety of permanent displays downstairs and featured displays upstairs.

The featured display this summer will be of memorabilia from locals who fought wars from World War I to Iraq.

Museum Director Dan Davidson said the exhibit shows the personal side of war and the impacts far-away conflicts have had on Northwest Colorado.

"We just want to show some of the costs," Davidson said.

The exhibit has been up since last winter, but the official kick-off is Memorial Day.
"The people that have seen it have really enjoyed it," Davidson said. "Hopefully it teaches people quite a bit."

Downstairs, the museum has exhibits on the Moffat Railroad that came into Craig in 1913, former Colorado governor and Craig resident Ed Johnson and exhibits about the region's agriculture and mining industry.

One of Davidson's favorite exhibits is the A.G. Wallihan exhibit.

Wallihan was one of the world's first wildlife photographers. He lived near Lay, west of Craig, in the late 1890s.

Not only does the museum have Wallihan's photographs, it also has a life-size recreation of one his most famous shots, a picture of a mountain lion jumping from a tree.

The museum also has pictures of Wallihan's wife, Augusta, who was a famous hunter featured in newspapers across the country.

Augusta's hunting rifle sits in one of the museum's display cases.

"She was a great shot," Davidson said.

The museum also has a cowboy and gunfighter exhibit. The exhibit features guns, chaps, spurs, saddles and other assortments collected by Craig resident Bill Mackin over the past 55 years.

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