Introduction to Project Wagon Wheel

The Wagon Wheel Information Committee was formed in July of 1971 after the Pinedale Roundup published a letter from the El Paso Natural Gas Company to Wyoming U.S. Congressman Teno Roncalio. The letter indicated that Congress would give twelve million dollars to El Paso Gas towards the eventual firing of underground nuclear devices twenty miles south of Pinedale, Wyoming. As time progressed, the committee learned (partly from similar tests in Colorado) that structural damage was certain to occur, that the air and ground water could be contaminated, and that major earthquakes and radiation poisoning could occur.

The Wagon Wheel Information Committee hosted public meetings and picnics, generated letters to the editor, conducted petitions and straw votes, sent out flyers, gave presentations, conducted school surveys, and established fund raising "blasts." One of its members, Floyd Bousman, appeared on the television show Today. By June 1975, the Atomic Energy Commission dropped Project Wagon Wheel for a number of practical and political reasons.