(Note: The audio-only version of this story ran on yesterday’s edition of Western Skies. Click HERE to listen to the entire episode of Western Skies on “Politics and Elections”)

With a large Libertarian contingency here, some might wonder how the ideals took root in Colorado Springs. Part of the answer may come from a recent New Yorker article titled “Covert Operations” by Jane Mayer about Tea Party funders Charles and David Koch. It referred to a now-defunct Colorado Springs-based libertarian institution called The Freedom School. With the help of the Colorado College and Pikes Peak Library District Special Collections, Noel Black and Craig Richardson dug up and created this portrait of the Freedom School, which later became Rampart College.

According to the Chicago Tribune, the Rampart College campus was sold in November of 1968. Rampart College remained open in Santa Ana, California until 1975. Many thanks to Jen Newman, Mike Procell, Jeff Bieri, Vicky Gregor and Craig Richardson for lending their voices to this piece.

 

9 Responses to Our Lost Libertarian History: The Freedom School and Rampart College

  1. John Sondericker says:

    It’s not so much lost as residing in the “newspaper” known as the Gazette, right?

  2. Eva says:

    wow. Fascinating!

  3. boomer49 says:

    LOL
    Not surprised that the Springs has been a wingnut grease trap for so many decades.

  4. Michael says:

    EXCELLENT….MORE….

  5. Noel Black says:

    I suppose “A Lost Piece of Our Libertarian History” would’ve been a better title, John, yes. But it is surprising how few people have any recollection of it, including folks like Poli Sci Prof Bob Loevy.

  6. adam degraff says:

    This Is My Bread. Best worst book title ever. Also, best worst cover art ever. Are those ghost demons coming over the mountains on the cover?

    Great find and superb treatment all around.

    I could have spent my wee bit of free time this morning watching 30 Rock on Hulu, but chose to watch this instead. Though I’m sure 30 Rock was awesome, this is surely better. Ego and imagination run amuck in the weird midwest in the fifties, a perfect storm. Horrifying as it must have been in many respects, I have to admit I kind of want to go to this school. There’s something about the font on the door of the school I find strangely compelling. I wonder if my thesis on the freedom of deviancy would have been pass or fail?

  7. Jeremy Van Hoy says:

    Cheers to the Colorado Free Press! [more Craig reading cheesy 50’s diatribe over cheesy 50’s music please!]

  8. DLBSierra says:

    This was a great piece. Very enlightening. Our history never ceases to amaze & surprise me. The readings by Vicki, Mike, et al was a cool touch.

  9. histrygrrl says:

    Awesome. This campus later became the Emily Griffith Center in Larkspur. Thanks for helping me connect the dots!

News

Smithsonian Institute
May 5, 2016 | NPR · The 1996 discovery of Kennewick Man, one of the oldest North American human skeletons ever found, erupted in an unprecedented fight between scientists and Native American beliefs.
 

AP
May 5, 2016 | NPR · On paper, the USDA’s plan to send surplus peanuts to feed 140,000 malnourished Haitian schoolchildren sounds heroic. But aid groups say it could devastate Haiti’s peanut farmers.
 

Getty images
May 5, 2016 | NPR · The Colorado city and the American Civil Liberties Union of Colorado have announced a settlement that will end the practice. The city will even give payouts to people who were wrongly sent to jail.
 

Arts & Life

Marvel
May 5, 2016 | NPR · Captain America: Civil War drops some of the politics of the comics on which it’s based, but it tells a different, equally current political story.
 

May 5, 2016 | NPR · Basma Abdel Aziz’s new novel is set in an unspecified Middle Eastern city, where an endless line snakes back from the mysterious Gate where citizens await pronouncements from a sinister government.
 

AP
May 5, 2016 | NPR · The Pulitzer Prize-winning author says his blue-collar grandfather would have been astonished by the life Russo leads. His new book, Everybody’s Fool, is a sequel to 1993’s Nobody’s Fool.
 

Music

Courtesy of the artist
May 5, 2016 | NPR · The Dead brings together the blues, the Bible and a dramatic tale of passion and power in an electrifying, unreleased performance.
 

Courtesy of the artist
May 5, 2016 | NPR · Nothing’s new album follows a tumultuous period in the band members’ lives. Its 10 songs delve into anxiety and addiction, mental illness and mortality, while channeling anguish into catharsis.
 

Courtesy of the artist
May 5, 2016 | NPR · On Rae’s third album, the singer-songwriter’s fleshed-out jams and delicate, jazz-informed ballads examine the subtle trajectories emotions can take.
 

Get the KRCC iPhone App

The Writer's Almanac

Radiolab