Skip to Main Navigation. Each navigation link will open a list of sub navigation links.

Skip to Main Content

Apply to the University of Wyoming

Global Resource Navigation

Give to UW
Download UW Viewbook
Visit Campus

Virtual Exhibits

American Heritage Center

Hell on Wheels: Union Pacific Towns in Wyoming

Cheyenne Tent City, undated

The city of Cheyenne was laid out and planned by the Union Pacific Railroad in July of 1867. By November, when the construction train arrived, there were already 3000 residents.

Businessman Morton E. Post wrote to his wife, “...Our business opens out better than we had expected and in a short time we will have all that we can attend to. Cheyenne has improved very rapidly and is now quite a city, far ahead of anything anticipated. The RR will be completed here in about 15 days it is within 15 miles of here now. Society is very rough here about like Denver in ‘59 and 60’. We have some very cold and disagreeable weather but it is very pleasant now.”

Samuel Chittenden, a railroad survey engineer, wrote the following year, “ Cheyenne is a city of gamblers. Everybody seems to carry navy revolvers and to haul them out on every pretext.”

The city of Cheyenne served as the territorial capital, and later became the state capital of Wyoming.

Share This Page:

1000 E. University Ave. Laramie, WY 82071
UW Operators (307) 766-1121 | Contact Us | Download Adobe Reader

Twitter Icon Youtube Icon Instagram Icon Vimeo Icon Facebook Icon

Accreditation | Emergency Preparedness | Employment at UW | Gainful Employment | Privacy Policy | Accessibility Accessibility information icon