66 pages 2 hours read

Moises Kaufman

The Laramie Project

Fiction | Play | Adult | Published in 2001

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Act I, Moments 14-17

Chapter Summaries & Analyses

Act I, Moments 14-17 Summary

Stephen and Barbara, members of the theatre company, explain that “The Fireside” is the name of the bar where Matthew Shepard was last seen alive. It’s a college bar with a pool are, and it hosts a few local regulars, too. The bar’s owner, Matt Mickelson, tells us that his family has been in Laramie for generations and that “in 1870 Louisa Grandma Swain cast the first woman’s ballot in any free election in the world, and that’s why Wyoming is the Equality State” (38). He advises Barbara and Stephen to speak to Matt Galloway, who was bartending that night.

Matt Galloway wants his interview to be short and to the point. He started work at 10pm that night and Matthew Shepard arrived at 10:30 and ordered a Heineken. A friend of Matthew’s, Phil Labrie, notes that Matthew always drank Heineken. Matt Galloway tells us that Matthew was the perfect customer, polite and intelligent; he tipped well. About 11:30pm, Aaron McKinney and Russell Henderson pay for a pitcher of beer with small change and keep to themselves until it’s gone. Matt Galloway doesn’t offer to serve them again. He later sees them talking to Matthew.