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Western Historian and Author to Speak at Rockpile Museum in Gillette

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Photo: Mark Lee Gardner, photo courtesy of Gardner and the Rockpile Museum

On Thursday, Sept 21, beginning at 7 p.m., The Campbell County Rockpile Museum in Gillette will welcome author and Western historian Mark Lee Gardner to present his latest book The Earth is All That Lasts. This saga tells the stories of Crazy Horse and Sitting Bull, two fascinating and heroic leaders who struggled to maintain the freedom of their people against impossible odds. Following the talk will be a book signing for any interested guests. There is no admission fee for this event. 

Mark Lee Gardner is the author of Rough Riders, To Hell on a Fast Horse, and Shot All to Hell, which received multiple awards, including a Spur Award from the Western Writers of America. An authority on the American West, Gardner has appeared on PBS’s American Experience as well as on the History Channel, AMC, the Travel Channel, and NPR. He has written for National Geographic History, American Heritage, the Los Angeles Times, True West, and American Cowboy. He holds an M.A. in American Studies from the University of Wyoming and lives with his family at the foot of Pikes Peak.

“In a year crowded with excellent Western history and biography, Mark Lee Gardner’s The Earth Is All That Lasts stands above the rest as the most ambitious history/biography in both the Western genre and general American biography. His use of primary resources, especially those of Native peoples, is exemplary. I believe it is the finest dual biography of Crazy Horse and Sitting Bull ever written.” — True West, Best of the West 2023: Best Nonfiction Book of the Year

“We are excited to host Mr. Gardner to share his book and his research,” says Rockpile Museum Director Robert Henning.  “We would like to thank the Leland D. Case Library for Western Historical Studies and Black Hills State University for helping to bring Mr. Gardner to our region.” 

This event is FREE and open to the public. Donations are accepted.  Please visit the Museum’s website at or call 307-682-5723 for more information.

The Campbell County Rockpile Museum tells the story of the Powder River Basin.  The museum has exhibits about each of the different periods in the history of the Powder River Basin. The museum houses large collections of fossils, Native American artifacts, rifles, saddles, horse-drawn vehicles, and energy industry equipment. There are also videos related to the mining, transportation, and use of coal from the local mines. The museum has a full schedule of temporary exhibits and educational programming each year.

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