Today, July 27th, marks the last day of my internship with Yellowstone’s museum collections. As I look back on my experience, I have learned a lot about Yellowstone’s history as well as collections management.
I’ve cataloged, photographed and housed hundreds of items in my time here. The objects I cataloged ranged from photographic prints, wolf skulls, clothing and sample invertebrate specimen. I’ve learned how to handle and preserve negative film. I’ve learned how to clean old vehicles that remain in the park’s vehicle storage. I’ve also learned about building pest control and how the curator decides on what objects to bring into the collection. I worked with completing collections inventory. I also put together an exhibit with some of my fellow interns. Lots of new work, experiences and tasks filled my nine weeks at the HRC, and time flew by quicker than I could ever imagine.
I also learned about a lot about Yellowstone’s past. I cataloged prints of the no longer standing canyon hotel. I cataloged personal clothing items of old canyon hotel workers. Through cataloging wolf skeletal remains, I came in contact with wolves that roamed far and wide in Yellowstone. I found out that Yellowstone’s geothermal features can forever alter the landscape.
I am very grateful to Colorado State University’s Public Lands History Center for giving me the opportunity to intern at the HRC over the summer. I found the internship because the PLHC reached out to me. I wouldn’t have been able to participate in this internship in any other way. My summer in Yellowstone has advanced my personal and professional growth, and the PLHC was a key facilitator in setting up my internship and getting me actively involved in public history. I certainly hope this is not the last time I am working in museum collections, and I also hope it is not the last time I am working in Yellowstone!