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Local News

Renovated Vintage Trailer To Home Kamas Valley History Museum

Trailer_0.jpg
Paul Wynn - Kamas Valley History Group
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The Kamas Valley History Group bought a 1978 Layton Trailer earlier this month. The retro-looking trailer, complete with a yellow stripe lining the outside, will be home to the area’s first history museum.

Kate Wynn is the secretary of the group. She said they bought the trailer with money they raised during their Labor Day yard sale.

"Literally, we took a handful of dollar bills and paid for the trailer," Wynn said. "Literally some singles because that was how people paid us."

The trailer is already gutted; the group will add floors, stands and uprights for displays, and they’ll add a ramp to make it handicap accessible. They expect to finish by Memorial Day weekend.

Wynn said she hopes to even make the outside of the trailer a historical homage to the Kamas Valley. 

"Everybody thinks I'm crazy," she said. "But I want to do a mural on the outside of the museum, rather than just being that horrible yellow stripe, which would be probably a pioneer wagon on one side."

The group picked a mobile museum, Wynn said, to avoid the expenses of purchasing a building.

"Currently, it's living in our barn, because we're working on it," she said. "We're hoping that someone maybe from the city or the library might ...we’re working on where it's going to live permanently. So the idea of a mobile Museum, it also means that we can take it to schools and, you know, the senior centers and places like that and local events."

The historical group has already received a couple of donations for the museum including the original wooden pipe from when the city was first plumbed for water. They’ve also received artifacts from old doctors and dentist offices.

Chair of the group, Deborah Lambert said they hope to eventually have enough donations to switch out exhibits.

"I've always thought the idea of rotating exhibits...so like, hey, for this month, the Kamas museum was focusing on water in the valley, or this, we're focusing on the 'Fitch Houses,'" Lambert said. 

Lambert said many of the families in the valley have been there since the city’s start in the mid-19th century. But she said many of the people involved in the organization are people who have recently moved to the area.

Paul Wynn, who is webmaster for the group, said they’re looking to use the history of Kamas as a way to create a community between both multigenerational residents and newcomers.

"When people move in, there's naturally a resentment, or a concern that they're going to change things and want to make it 'Park City 2,'" Paul Wynn said. "If those people who move in, demonstrate that they have a very passionate interest in the past, they want to maintain and restore as much as they possibly can, and that they're interested in the same things that those people - the locals - were and are still interested in, you have a much greater chance to build a community spirit. It doesn't happen of itself. And it's not easy to make it happen."

He said physically interactive history like walking tours and museums are a good approach to engage the community.

The group created a Kamas Valley historical calendar to raise funds to renovate the trailer, which are on sale at local businesses and Kamas, Oakley and Francis Town Halls. They also have public meetings tentatively scheduled for every Thursday. For more information, you can visit their website.