(Riverton, WY) The Riverton Museum is temporarily hosting a collection of reproduction artifacts related to the American colonial era in what is known as the Patriot Chest of the Wyoming Society of the Sons of the American Revolution, on display now through Independence Day.
“We’re really happy to have this Revolutionary War display, just in time for the Fourth of July,” said Riverton Museum Site Manager Nathaniel Griffee. “The exhibit gives kids and adults an opportunity to see, learn about, and even touch our country’s formative history.”
Since 1889, the National Society of the Sons of the American Revolution has served as a non-profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to promoting patriotism and preserving and promoting the education of American history to future generations. The Patriots Chest is part of an interactive presentation intended to complement elementary and middle school lesson plans on the Revolutionary War and the Colonial period of American History, with the purpose to bring history alive while providing students with a sense of the times and appreciation of the men and women who helped build the foundation of the United States.
Each state’s SAR society is expected to create and maintain a Patriot Chest. The one for Wyoming was created by the Wind River Chapter, based in Fremont County.
“I have documented twelve of my ancestors who served in the patriot cause of the American Revolution,” said Karl Falken, president of the Wind River SAR chapter. “They braved British bombs, bullets, and bayonets to give us a free nation and a constitutional government. This is the very least I can do to honor their memory and achievements.”
The exhibit also includes a museum-quality reproduction of a late-war Continental Army Private’s uniform and an original thirteen-star American flag. Some items are displayed on a table outside the display case for a hands-on experience with history.
“The Colorguard uniform is all handsewn and made by a very famous tailor, who unfortunately died after he made this one…which makes it so much more special,” Falken said. “The material was carefully selected to be as close to the original materials as possible. Even the buttons are pewter. The hat was made by Matthew Brenckle, one of the top hat makers in the country. The musket is not truly Revolutionary War, but very similar and close to that time period.”
The exhibit is intended to coincide with the Independence Day celebration of the passage of the Declaration of Independence which formalized the nation’s independence two days after the Continental Congress voted for independence from Great Britain.
The Riverton Museum is open Monday through Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. For more information about the Patriots Chest or the Wind River Chapter of the Sons of the American Revolution, contact Karl Falken at 307-850-8573 or e-mail KFalken@gmail.com.