Arapaho elder Sherman Sage depicted in Laramie’s Historic Figures Alleyway

h/t Laramie Mural Project - Photo in the lower right corner from L to R: Shep Husted (guide), Gun Griswold (73-year-old judge), Sherman Sage (63-year-old chief of police), Tom Crispin (38-year-old reservation resident and interpreter), Oliver W. Toll (recorder) and David Robert Hawkins (student). Photo courtesy of Estes Park Museum.

In 2015, artists Colleen Friday and Adrienne Vetter completed the mural of Arapaho elder Sherman Sage as part of the Laramie Mural Project’s people in Wyoming’s history mini-mural project. “All of the murals in this alley used photographs from local or regional primary source repositories to inspire the image,” according to the Laramie Mural Project.

The project took place between 2015-17 and created the Historic Figures Alleyway which is between 2nd/3rd and Grand/Ivinson in Laramie.

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The Laramie Mural Project shared a little history about Sage:

One such mini mural depicts Sage, an Arapaho elder who lived from 1844-1943. Sherman Sage lived during a very tumultuous time in our nation’s history and made significant contributions to his tribe. He observed the signing of the Fort Laramie Treaty in 1868, fought in many regional battles, witnessed the surrender of Crazy Horse in 1877 and learned from Wovoka, a Northern Paiute spiritual leader, about the Ghost Dance and brought it back to the Wind River Reservation in the late 1880s. In 1914, the Colorado Mountain Club invited three Arapaho men to Estes Park to help identify geographic features using the original Indian names. Sherman Sage participated in the two-week backpacking trip in an effort to identify place names associated with the Arapaho peoples’ ancestral lands.

Later in life, Sage served on the Arapaho Business Council and opposed the Indian Reorganization Act in 1934. Sage died January 26, 1943. “One Hundred Years of Old Man Sage: An Arapaho Life” by Jeffrey D. Anderson offers a biographical sketch of Sage’s extraordinary life.

The tour map of the Laramie Mural Project can be viewed here: Laramie Mural Tour

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