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VIDEO: Community invited to tour ‘Casper Freedom Trail’ and explore Black history of Casper

Casper Freedom Trail map (ServeWyoming) Rev. James Reeb mural in downtown Casper. (Dan Cepeda, Oil City)

CASPER, Wyo. — The “Casper Freedom Trail” is a project spearheaded by ServeWyoming that explores Casper’s Black history, featuring an interactive story map that includes photographs and stories relating to 26 locations in the community.

As part of Martin Luther King Jr. Day and Wyoming Equality Day celebrations, ServeWyoming on Monday shared a new video focusing on the Casper Freedom Trail via YouTube:

The Casper Freedom Trail project highlights churches, businesses and people and the history of the civil rights movement in Natrona County. ServeWyoming’s Volunteer Wyoming Program Director Wendy Luck said on Monday morning that the Casper Freedom Trail project has involved working with community leaders and people in the community to gather family histories and the history of different locations in Casper.

Some of the locations featured in the Casper Freedom Trail tour are sites that have been demolished, including some in the old Sandbar District in Casper.

“Part of our effort in preserving that history is helping to mark out where those sites would have been,” Luck said. “[The Sandbar District] was a lively area that had a bunch of rich culture and history there and so being able to honor the fact that that was part of our community as a whole is something that I think is really important.”

Luck said that the Casper Freedom Trail project came about as ServeWyoming realized it would likely be unable to hold traditional volunteer service activities on MLK Day due to the COVID-19 pandemic. She said that the project has seen a “huge wonderful positive response from the community as a whole and people wanting to learn more.”

Historians reached out to contribute to the project which highlights the following historic locations in Casper:

(ServeWyoming)

Luck said that ServeWyoming would ordinarily hold a focused service project on MLK Jr. Day, which is the only federal holiday designated as a national day of service. While that was not possible this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, ServeWyoming is supporting Project Homeless Connect Natrona County.

Luck added that ServeWyoming is encouraging people to volunteer in churches and nonprofit organizations throughout the community.

“We have a lot of nonprofit partners that need some extra help, especially right now,” Luck said. “We encourage everyone to go to our website, which is ServeWyoming.org, click on volunteer and find
a way to be of service today.”

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