by Pam Zubeck
With gratitude, the Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum (CSPM) Board of Directors and Matt Mayberry, CSPM Director, announced today the museum received the largest annual private gift in its 120-year history. An anonymous donor will donate $300,000 during the next three years (2016-2018) to support CSPM’s The Story of Us exhibit, which opens in January 2017.
“This generous gift will provide the foundation the museum needs to shape The Story of Us exhibit into a powerful experience for CSPM visitors to better understand their community through better understanding its history,” said Mayberry. “It will provide museum guests compelling ways to discover the past, make sense of the present and shape the region’s future through a dynamic, hands-on exhibit. We are truly grateful for all this donor has done and continues to do to support CSPM.”
The Story of Us exhibit is an innovative, one of a kind project merging modern geographic information systems (GIS) with the museum’s rich collections of historic maps, artifacts, photographs and oral histories. The end result is an interactive database displayed on large, drafting table touchscreens allowing users to explore Colorado Springs’ rich history on a street-by-street basis. Guests will learn and document their neighborhood’s history and those surrounding them, and stories are shared through an alphabetical “A-Z” study of local events and industries. For instance, “A” will examine the Antlers Hotel, and “C” will explore the region’s long-forgotten coal mining industry.
Because of the city’s transience and sprawling cityscape in which urban renewal and other development has erased evidence of our past, it can be difficult for citizens to get engaged in the community and develop an awareness of the city’s distinct history. The Story of Us seeks to break down these and other barriers to community identity through historical geography and provide museum visitors with a sense of place.
About the Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum: Located in the beautifully restored 1903 El Paso County Courthouse in downtown Colorado Springs, the Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum’s mission is to build a connection to the Pikes Peak region by preserving and sharing our culture history. CSPM is accredited by the American Alliance of Museums. Hours are Tuesday – Saturday from 10:00 am – 5:00 pm. Admission to the Museum is FREE! For more information, visit www.cspm.org or call 719.385.5990.