Bailey Phelps

November 12, 1941 to April 9, 2018

Obituary – unable to find online yet bio here in its place

Active Website available here

Cap’s Off to You Blog Post – posted April 15, 2022

Do you have memories of Bailey Phelps? Please email to

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Bailey used a traditional tribal story bag that contained interesting cultural items related to his stories. He would ask a young listener to pull a “magical” object from the bag and then he would tell a story based on that object.

What place(s) did you know him:


What was the Story Artist known for? Life Mantras?

As a member of the Cherokee Nation, Bailey was dedicated to preserving the legends of that tribe–and many others. His “trademark” was his use of Native American flutes to accompany his stories. Bailey summed up the power and attraction of oral storytelling as follows: “Storytelling, more formally, oral narrative performance means a live person interacting with a live audience to create a special experience of living in the same story for a time. The subtle communication between teller and listeners makes each experience unique.” “Human beings throw off stories as a fire throws off light and warmth, and they can create the same sense of fascination and pleasure. Storytelling is, I believe, the oldest way in which human beings convey values, remember history, celebrate victories, teach truth, create and maintain community and have a whale of a lot of fun.”

–details shared by Northern Colorado Storytellers

Introduction/Poem in Bailey’s book “Storied Treasure”