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Exile on Main Street

Exile on Main Street002 (1)

Rolling Stones 1972 Album Exile on Main Street inside sleeve of the album. Top of the image shows Casper, Wyoming.

Have you ever found people from your hometown staring back at you when you opened up a book or looked at the illustrations on the music album you were playing?

Hidden on the inside sleeve of the Rolling Stones 1972 album “Exile on Main Street”’ is a picture of servicemen saluting during an event. This photograph was taken in Casper, Wyoming, and the servicemen saluting were identified as men stationed at the Casper Filter Center* in 1956. How do we know it was taken then? Enterprising researchers used motor vehicle records to determine the photo was taken in 1956 by using the visible license plate on the KSPR panel truck.

Over time some of the saluting soldiers and spectators have been identified. A serviceman standing in the middle of the photo was identified as a Sgt. Maxwell by a Mrs. Claude Key, who gave a call to the Casper Star-Tribune with the identification. The spectator holding his hat in the middle of the photo has been identified to the Casper Star-Tribune by two Mills, Wyoming residents as Perry Abar. Abar lived in Mills, Wyoming, at the time of the photo.

This Casper picture is called a mystery photograph. Nobody is sure what the occasion of the photo was or who took the picture. A further mystery is, why was this specific photograph chosen for the album sleeve? What connection do the Rolling Stones have to Wyoming? These questions have no answers as of yet. Still, maybe one day, with the public’s help or with a Rolling Stone’s tell-all book, this small photographic mystery will have a satisfying conclusion.

Do you know anything more about this photograph? Leave your comments here!

Casper Star-Tribune, May 8, 1973; Partial ‘Mystery’ Solved

Casper Star-Tribune, May 9, 1973; Mystery Picture Clearer

* The Casper Filter Center is the location where volunteer civilian Ground Observer Corp plane spotters from all over the state of Wyoming call in planes spotted flying in Wyoming air space. The Casper Filter Center volunteers plot and track the planes. Necessary information about the planes are then relayed to the Air Defense Corp who make the decision if the incoming planes are hostile.

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Filed under Events, music, Mystery, Photographs

This Day in History… Lindbergh and the “Spirit of St. Louis” Land in Cheyenne (1927)

Sub Neg 15389, Bonnie Gray and the 'Spirit of St. Louis', 9-2-1927

Bonnie Gray, champion rodeo cowgirl and trick rider, poses beside the “Spirit of St. Louis” during Col. Charles Lindbergh’s Guggenheim tour stop in Cheyenne, September 2, 1927 (WSA Richardson Print 636)

90 years ago today, Charles Lindbergh and “The Spirit of St. Louis” touched down in Cheyenne, Wyoming. His visit was part of a tour sponsored by the Daniel Guggenheim Fund to promote national interest in aviation. By all counts, the tour was a rousting success at this.

EPSON scanner image

Knights News Emporium in downtown Cheyenne festooned with bunting welcoming Lindbergh to Cheyenne (WSA Meyers Neg 3069)

The 3-month, 92 city tours of all 48 states followed Lindbergh’s solo trans-Atlantic flight in May and coincided with the release of his book “WE”, recounting the flight, that July. It is estimated that 30 million people or roughly one quarter of the United States population saw the aviator.

Ad for the Klein Music Co, Dildine Garage Company and Sam Zall Jewelers announcing ties of their products to Lindgbergh

The local papers were plastered with ads attempting to cash in on Lindbergh’s visit to Cheyenne (Wyoming State Tribune-Cheyenne State Leader 9-2-1927 p11)

Cheyenne was not immune to Lucky Lindy fever. Already a regional aviation hub, the city fathers saw this as a chance to shine and everyone wanted a piece of the action. Downtown buildings were festooned with bunting and pictures of the aviator. Significant portions of 3 days’ newspapers (September 1-3) were devoted to the stop, reporting in detail scheduled stops, meetings, tours, dinners, and speeches.

Headline "Lindbergh Arrives in Cheyenne Friday" "Spirit of St. Louis Circles then "WE" Land"

Front page of the Wyoming State Tribune-Cheyenne State Leader announcing Lindbergh’s arrival in Cheyenne. (September 2, 1927, p.1)

According to the papers, Lindbergh landed at the air field just before 2 pm. The paper took care to refute reports that the aviator was forced down by engine trouble. He was then given a tour of the business district by Governor Frank Emerson, Mayor C.W. Riner and Brigadier General Dwight E. Aultman of Fort D.A. Russell (now Warren Air Force Base). He then gave a short speech at Frontier Park which was broadcast live by local radio station KFBU. He spent sometime talking to the press at the Plains Hotel before a banquet with 600 lucky Cheyennites. The retired to his room at the Plains for the night. The next morning at 6 am, he left for Salt Lake City almost 2 hours early.

Headline "Cheyenne Honors Col. Charles A. Lindbergh", "Lindbergh, Cynosure of Millions of Eyes, Finds Things Here Like Every Place Else"

(Wyoming State Leader-Cheyenne State Tribune 9-3-1927 p1)

The press seemed to sympathize with the “Lone Eagle” and his packed schedule. They reported him looking extremely tired but remaining courteous and in good spirits despite an incessant press of people straining to get a glimpse of their hero.

P99-7_39, Spirit of St Louis and Charles Lindberg at the Cheyenne air field, Sept 2, 1927

Scrapbook page showing 4 prized photos taken shortly after the “Spirit of St. Louis” landed at the Cheyenne air field. The law enforcement officers guarding the plane can be seen in these images, along with ropes used to manage the crowd. (WSA P99-7/39)

p2017-_ _2, Charles Lindbergh and 'Spirit of St Louis' at Cheyenne Airport, 9-2-1927

Lindbergh and other men, probably mechanics or air field attendants, standing beside the “Spirit of St. Louis” with a hangar in the background. This is one of four photographs of the visit generously donated to the Wyoming State Archives in August 2017.

Additional Reading

Guggenheim Tour,” CharlesLindbergh.org. (accessed Aug 2017)

WE, by Charles Lindbergh (1927). The book was published by George P. Putnam of New York. Putnam enthusiastically promoted aviation and would later marry Amelia Earhart. 

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Filed under Eyewitness to History, This Day in Wyoming History...