MARCH 2018 Photo credit: Richard Nixon Presidential Library & Museum The League Of Wives: Vietnam’s POW/MIA Allies and Advocates EXHIBIT OPENING March 24

The League Of Wives: Vietnam’s POW/MIA Allies and Advocates By: Leah Davis Witherow, CSPM Curator of History The board and staff of the Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum are thrilled to announce its newest exhibit, The League of Wives: Vietnam’s POW/MIA Allies and Advocates. CSPM is the second institution in the country to host this ground-breaking exhibit in partnership with the Robert J. Dole Institute of Politics in Lawrence, Kansas. The League of Wives will open to the public on Saturday, March 24th and will be on exhibit through December 29, 2018. This important national story is extremely relevant to our community, which has a long history of military service and sacrifice. Colorado Springs Vice Mayor — and later Mayor — Larry Ochs worked closely with Helene Knapp, a local and national leader in the National League of Families of American Prisoners and Missing in Southeast Asia, to advocate for and support the Vietnam-era POW/MIA families in Colorado Springs. CSPM is tremendously honored to be able to bring this exhibit to the Pikes Peak Region and excited to work with the Dole Institute of Politics to raise awareness of this significant era in American history. On May 1, 1970, Sybil Stockdale, Phyllis Galanti, Louise Mulligan and Jane Denton, founding members of the National League of Families of American Prisoners and Missing in Southeast Asia, rallied with 1,000 family members of prisoners of war at the DAR Constitution Hall in Washington, D.C. U.S. Sen. Bob Dole, an early and ardent supporter of their cause, helped draw a crowd of 3,800 to the event that helped establish the league’s influence and national visibility. EXHIBIT OPENING March 24th The Dole Institute of Politics created a new special exhibition about these leaders which opened in May 2017. The League of Wives: Vietnam’s POW/ MIA Allies & Advocates tells the story of the military wives who founded the organization, which would later become the National League of POW/ MIA Families. The exhibition – the first of its kind from the institute – features documents, artifacts, oral histories, multimedia and regionally specific components. President Nixon addresses Helene Knapp with Darlene Sadler and Phyllis Galanti January 26, 1973. Washington, D.C. The Richard Nixon Presidential Library and Museum. WHPO-E0113-33. The project is funded by a generous gift from Harlan and Alice Ann Ochs of Colorado Springs, Colorado. The gift honors Harlan Ochs’ late brother Larry Ochs, former Vice-Mayor and Mayor of Colorado Springs and a strong advocate for the POW/MIA cause. Virginia-based historian and 2017 Dole Archives Curatorial Fellow Heath Hardage Lee curated the exhibition, which is based on her upcoming book, “The Reluctant Sorority: The True Story of Survival and Rescue from the Homefront,” due for release in 2019. “The wives’ weapons were organization, tenacity and their willingness to ditch the very military protocols they were trained to adhere to,” Lee said. “Ultimately, these Vietnam War wives quit waiting for their husbands to be rescued by the American government. Instead, they did the job themselves with aid from MUSELETTER MARCH 2018| PG 2

President Nixon with Carole Hanson, Louise Mulligan, Sybil Stockdale, Andrea Rander. December 12, 1969. The Richard Nixon Presidential Library and Museum. WHPO-2620-14A. Senator Dole, Secretary of Defense Melvin Laird and his staff, National Security Advisor Henry Kissinger and President Richard Nixon.” “Ms. Lee’s 2015 visit revealed to us a remarkable story of women’s leadership during the Vietnam War and a little-remembered part of Senator Dole’s legacy,” said Audrey Coleman, Dole Institute Assistant Director and Senior Archivist. “It also resonates today as a prime example of a grass-roots effort becoming a partnership of citizens and their government officials. This transformative partnership changed U.S. government protocol regarding prisoners of war and missing in action – and ultimately, the fate of their husbands.” Through partnerships with CSPM and the Virginia Museum of History and Culture, the exhibition will travel to institutions nationwide. The exhibition will open at CSPM on March 24, 2018 and at the Virginia Museum of History and Culture in March 2019. Each institution will customize the exhibition with materials from their own collections and stories from their own communities. CSPM has substantially expanded the League of Wives exhibit by sharing stories and artifacts that reveal the powerful grassroots movement in Colorado Springs during the Vietnam Era. CSPM will highlight the leadership of Helene Knapp and other POW/MIA families and wives including Joan Pollard, Mary Dodge and others. CSPM will also describe the activities of Colorado Springs for POWs and the involvement of Vice-Mayor Larry Ochs and John Herzog. Additionally, CSPM is pleased to share the story of Newt Heisley, designer of the iconic POW/MIA flag, and former Colorado Springs resident. This impactful and important exhibit is not to be missed. *Significant portions of this article were drawn from Lisa Scheller’s contribution to the KU Endowment / KU Giving Magazine* MUSELETTER MARCH 2018| PG 3

UPCOMING EVENTS March & April 2018 CHILDREN’S HISTORY HOUR: FANNIE MAE DUNCAN AND WOMEN OF JAZZ Wednesday, March 21 and Saturday, March 31 (10:30 am to 11:30 am) Families are invited to the Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum for a history adventure on the third Wednesday and last Saturday of each month! Children ages 3-6 will enjoy story time, a family-friendly exhibit tour, and crafts and activities. We explore a new theme each month! In celebration of Women’s History Month, March will explore the stories of Fannie Mae Duncan and women in jazz music. Reservations Required - $3 suggested donation, free for members Fannie Mae Duncan Photo from the CSPM Collections OPENING DAY - THE LEAGUE OF WIVES: VIETNAM’S POW/MIA ALLIES AND ADVOCATES Saturday, March 24 The League of Wives: Vietnam’s POW/MIA Allies & Advocates, tells the story of the military wives who founded the organization that would later become the National League of POW/MIA Families. This important national story is extremely relevant to the Pikes Peak region, which has a long history of military service and sacrifice. CSPM is honored to be able to bring this exhibit to the Pikes Peak region and excited to work with the Robert J. Dole Institute of Politics to raise awareness of this significant era in American History. 11:00 am -12:30 pm BOOK TALK WITH HEATH LEE Guests are invited to join author and exhibit curator, Heath Lee for a presentation of her forthcoming book, The League of Wives: A True Story of Survival and Rescue from the Vietnam Homefront. St. Martin’s Press will publish the book in 2019. Reservations Required – $5 suggested donation, free for members 2:00 pm - 3:30 pm THE LEAGUE OF WIVES PANEL DISCUSSION Moderated by Audrey Coleman, Senior Archivist and Assistant Director of the Dole Institute of Politics, this fascinating panel discussion will explore the unique experiences of local POW/MIA wives, explain the roles of a select group of USAFA cadets and their close connections to families in the Pikes Peak region, and describe the history of our homegrown advocacy organization, Colorado Springs for POWs. Reservations Required – $5 suggested donation, free for members. MUSELETTER MARCH 2018 | PG 4

WINDOWS INTO HISTORY TOURS Every Tuesday at 1:00 pm, Friday at 11:00 am and Saturday at 12:00 pm and 1:00 pm Throughout the month of March, our free, 45-minute guided exploration of the museum will place a special emphasis on the stories of women in Pikes Peak regional history. Free, drop-in tours (no reservations required) PIKES PEAK REGIONAL HISTORY LECTURE SERIES: VIETNAM, YESTERDAY AND TODAY Presented by Colonel Rodney Wells, Saturday, April 14 (2:00 pm to 3:00 pm) How did the United States ever get so entangled with the Vietnam War? What caused us to send 58,000 of our youth to their deaths in a land thousands of miles away that had no resources, natural or otherwise, that were of economic value to us? What did we hope to gain or prevent from happening? Were there geopolitical imperatives that drove us to render everincreasing payments in blood and treasure to make our power credible abroad? A generation found itself torn apart by conflicting ideals of patriotism. What role did political expediency and protest play in adding more angst to the maze of difficult decisions? Join Rod, who spent two years as an Air Force pilot in Southeast Asia, as he attempts, with the benefit of a halfcentury of hindsight, to examine what Vietnam calls today “The American War.” Rod will also present a short travelogue of his return to Vietnam this year showing how the country has rebounded from the devastation of war to a position of prosperity and reconciliation. Reservations Required - $5 suggested donation, free for members Please RSVP for these events at www.cspm.org/rsvp-for-an-event or call 719-385-5990 McAllister House Museum Talks $25 each or $45 for both talks Tom Tudor: Who’s Buried in Arlington National Cemetery Sunday, March 18, 2 pm Mary Warren Daley: Women Air Force Service Pilots (WASP) of WWII Saturday, March 31, 1 pm Visit mcallisterhouse.org for details & RSVP Tel: 720-447-8600 Email: mcallister.director@gmail.com MUSELETTER MARCH 2018 | PG 5

By Stephanie Prochaska, Assistant Archivist Since 1988, U.S. presidents have proclaimed March Women’s History Month. The Pikes Peak region has many extraordinary stories of women who helped shape our community. A notable one is of Lillian Hart Kerr. Lillian Hart Kerr was born in Iowa and raised in Texas. Lillian was an accomplished pianist who graduated from North Texas Female College. She taught music in regional schools, was Texas’s first female notary public, was the postmaster in Archer City, Texas and was selected to be a judge of Archer City’s 1893 World’s Fair contributions. Two years after, she wed Judge Robert Kerr in 1893, and the couple moved to Colorado Springs. As the first president of the Woman’s Club of Colorado Springs, she and her colleagues advocated for food and drug standards, lobbied for national parks, organized the first free kindergarten in Colorado Springs, provided fresh milk to school children, lobbied for a public library and raised money to purchase books for it. Additionally, the club’s nearly 200 members advocated for national woman’s suffrage. Kerr co-founded the Colorado Springs Civic League, served as chairman of the Council Proceeding Committee and was appointed by the mayor to the City Planning Commission. Through her public service, Lillian Kerr exposed poor working conditions for men, women and children, and advocated for the protection of our parks and open spaces. Other achievements include: co-authoring the Equal Rights Amendment, organizing the Women’s Auxiliary of the YMCA, chaired Theodore Roosevelt’s Colorado Bull Moose Party Campaign, served as a member Civil Service Commission and the Colorado Springs Red Cross, participated in the North End Women’s Christian Temperance Union, and was a charter member of the Colorado Daughters of the American Revolution. Portrait of Lillian Kerr Photos from the CSPM Collections Woman’s suffrage (1916) MUSELETTER MARCH 2018 | PG 6

Partner Spotlight League of Wives programming made possible by funding from Harlan and Alice Ann Ochs of Colorado Springs, in honor of Larry Ochs. Photo of Larry Ochs courtesy of the Colorado Springs Gazette Telegraph

MUSEUM SPOTLIGHT! RENATE KENNEDY This month, CSPM recognizes the efforts of volunteer Renate Kennedy. Renate has been volunteering at the museum for more than five years. She loves the beauty of the museum and enjoys working with the museum staff. As a front desk volunteer, Renate plays an important role in ensuring every guest has a positive experience at the museum. After greeting each visitor, Renate enjoys talking with them and learning their stories. Renate’s love of working with visitors serves her well when she volunteers to assist with special events. “We are so appreciative of Renate’s warm and generous spirit. She is such an asset to the museum.” When reflecting on Renate’s contributions to the museum, Jim Wahl Security Supervisor shared “We are so appreciative of Renate’s warm and generous spirit. She is such an asset to the museum.” A great example of Renate’s service is the extra time she puts into helping us prepare for school programs. Each time she volunteers she prepares hundreds of small bags with pipe cleaners and plastic beads for the students’ craft project. One of Renate’s favorite memories at the museum involves a recent guest interaction. “A young boy came in with his family. They had been here many times before,” she began. “He did not want to go to the Children’s Gallery, and he was carrying what looked to be a super soaker. I asked if he wanted me to hold it for him while his family toured the museum, but he said no, he was a ghost buster and needed it to help us find one. When I saw him later in the morning, he excitedly said he had captured two ghosts.” Renate’s interest in the history of the Pikes Peak region began years ago, when she taught fourth grade. Although the fourth grade curriculum includes Colorado history, Renate still learns new stories at the museum. “I did not know the story of the Ludlow Massacre until the exhibit went up here,” she said. “My husband and I then did a road trip down to the site. I found it strangely and eerily moving.” Renate and her husband have lived in Colorado Springs for 43 years. They have one son, Sean, who lives in Minnesota with his husband, Alex. They all love to travel and travel often. In her free time, Renata enjoys reading, taking walks, spending time with friends and coloring. MUSELETTER MARCH 2018| PG 8

MUSEUM STORE Gifts Artisans Jewelry Books For those unable to attend the February lecture, “A Winning Team: Architect Ruhtenberg and Photographer Burgess,” the museum store has a limited number of signed copies of speaker Elaine Freed’s book “Modern At Midcentury: Ruhtenberg Revisited.” The Museum Store always offers a selection of CSPM logo merchandise. No doubt your coffee or tea will taste even more delicious when sipped from a CSPM mug! Store Hours Tuesday – Saturday, 10:00 am – 4:45 pm CSPM members receive a 10% discount at the museum store! MUSELETTER MARCH 2018| PG 9

CSPM HAPPENINGS Sankofa members and friends performed African dance and drumming in the Division 1 courtroom during Sankofa Culture Day. (Photo by Mike Pach, 3 Peaks Photography) Matt Mayberry, Museum Director, awarding Kali Ryan, an 11th grade student, with the Marshall and E.J. Sprague Scholarship which recognizes students who show a dedication toward and appreciation of the study of history. Guests had a great time at the Roaring 20s-themed Silent Film Soiree! Meg Poole, Program Coordinator, reading to students at a school program. MUSELETTER JANUARY Elaine Freed giving the February lecture “A Winning Team: Architect Ruhtenberg and Photographer Burgess.”

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