A limited number of copies of the 6th edition of Wyoming Almanac are available for purchase at bookstores and museum shops throughout Wyoming. Cost is $20 plus applicable sales tax. The new, revised 7th edition will be published in the summer of 2013.


This Month's Featured Photograph--




























Wyoming National Guard Units on Parade, Lusk, Wyoming.  This photograph shows the guard units from Niobrara County on parade in downtown Lusk just before the units were mobilized for service in World War II. The photographer is unknown, but the picture is from the collection of the late Leslie J. Roberts, now held by his sons, Steven, Phil and David Roberts. The elder Roberts, a 1934 graduate of Lusk High School, joined the National Guard in the mid-1930s and served in the war in the Pacific from 1942 until his discharge as a master sergeant in 1945.




Read about the "Cheyenne 200," an automobile race that once rivaled the Indianapolis 500.

Read about Wyoming's first car, nicknamed "Lovejoy's Toy" by a Laramie newspaper


Past Featured Photographs












Trail End State Historic Site, Sheridan. The home was built by John B. Kendrick, prominent Sheridan area cattleman who served as Wyoming governor from 1915-17 and U. S. Senator from 1917 until his death in 1933. Born in Texas in 1857, he came to Wyoming trailing cattle, married the daughter of a prominent rancher and became the major force in the state Democratic Party during the first third of the 20th century. Photo by Phil Roberts
















The Platte County Courthouse, Wheatland.  Phil Roberts photo




















Newly made ropes hanging in the King Rope company rope and saddle store, Sheridan. The King's Saddlery, King Ropes, and The
Don King Museum complex is located on main street in downtown Sheridan.



















"Buffalo Soldier" statue in Cheyenne by sculptor Chris Navarro.

















"Old Bedlam," the bachelor officers' quarters at Fort Laramie, the oldest standing structure in Wyoming. Phil Roberts photo (2008)





The Washakie Museum and Cultural Center in Worland opened in May 2010. Phil Roberts photo






This photograph was shot in the early 1980s showing what had been one of the world's largest wind turbines after it had been dynamited by the federal government and before the pieces were hauled off for scrap. The first Bureau of Reclamation sponsored experiments on wind power were conducted at the site south of Medicine Bow beginning in the late 1970s, but after the Reagan administration took office, the project was abandoned as alternative energy programs did not agree with the administration's agenda. Ironically, some of Wyoming's biggest wind farms are now located within a few miles of the site. Pictured standing on the huge turbine is David Roberts, former publisher/editor of the Medicine Bow Post, who is writing a history of the wind power programs in Wyoming.  Photo by Phil Roberts















Rain on the Snowy Range. The summer of 2009 was extraordinarily wet in southeastern Wyoming. While it is too early to declare the seven-year drought over, the rain totals for the season provided optimism. This photograph was taken during a rainstorm near Mirror Lake on July 31, 2009. Phil Roberts photo


















Lincoln Highway marker, Interstate 80 Lincoln Monument rest stop on the summit east of Laramie. These posts directed transcontinental automobile travelers on the Lincoln Highway (later, U. S. Highway 30) to the correct road. Few stretches of the highway across southern Wyoming were paved and, in order that a wrong turn wasn't taken, travelers looked to these concrete posts for guidance. Photo by Phil Roberts














Rick Ewig, editor of Annals of Wyoming and associate director of the UW American Heritage Center, shares the bench in front of the Crook County Courthouse in Sundance with a statue of Harry Longabaugh, "the Sundance Kid."  Sundance earned his name from having served time in the Crook County Jail.  Photo by Phil Roberts












Known as "Fort Hat Creek," the original portion of this building once served as a stagecoach stop on the Cheyenne-Deadwood stageline. Later, the structure served as a store and post office for the Hat Creek community, ten miles north of Lusk. Photo by Phil Roberts, 2006.
















President Barack Obama when he spoke on the campus of the University of Wyoming in March 2008, drawing one of the largest crowds in recent Wyoming history to hear a speaker.  Obama won the Presidency without Wyoming's three electoral votes although Albany County, where the university is located, gave Obama a majority in the November 4 election. Phil Roberts photo















Hunting Season and Police Protection: Deer around Rawlins are pretty smart. In this photo taken this fall during hunting season, these two animals are sticking close to the County Jail and sheriff's office on the east side of Rawlins. Another group of three deer were seen the same day on the lawn of the Rawlins Police Department in the center of downtown Rawlins. In that case, they, too, clearly seemed to be seeking police protection!   Photo by Phil Roberts













Aerial view of Cheyenne rail yard and, in the upper right, the Union Pacific Depot in Cheyenne. Sept. 28, 2008, photograph by Phil Roberts.















Blackbird on a spruce top, Laramie, winter 2007-8.






Inside the walls of the "big house"--The Wyoming Frontier Prison, a historic site in north Rawlins, was the Wyoming State Penitentiary for almost eight decades until its closure in the early 1980s when prisoners were moved to another facility south of Rawlins. The old prison, now open for tours, retains much of the character it had when it served as a functioning prison. Tour guides tell fascinating tales about the place. If you visit the building housing the gas chamber and "death row," ask where the prisoners, digging a tunnel in an escape attempt, hid the dirt.   Phil Roberts photo, June, 2008














The Lake Hotel, Yellowstone National Park, as it appeared on June 12, 2008, after a snowstorm dumped several inches of snow on the Park. Phil Roberts photo.



















The aftermath of the Holliday Furniture fire, April 15, 1948, Laramie. The fire started in the elevator shaft of the store, a building the firm had occupied for 76 years. The blaze was reported at 1:45 a.m., but it raged out of control for 15 hours, destroying seven buildings and some 30 businesses before firemen could get the fire under control. At its peak, the flames could be seen from 40 miles away. It was the worst fire in Laramie history.  Lillian Santillianes Johnston collection, courtesy of her daughter, Joyce Smith.







Two scenes of Independence Rock. (Left): The eastern face of the rock has on it a number of names although many have worn off over the 150 years since it was "Register of the Desert."  (Right) The rock as seen from the parking lot at the site.  Phil Roberts photos, summer 2005.
















Lusk's Redwood Water Tank--Located just to the east of Lusk, this landmark was constructed by the Fremont, Elkhorn and Missouri Valley Railroad in 1886, soon after the town of Lusk was established. The railroad used the tower to refill the water reservoirs required by the steam locomotives.  Taken out of service in the 1950s, the water tank was obtained by the Niobrara County Historical Society in 1971. The Society, with help from many local civic organizations and individuals, restored the tank.  It is a landmark reminder of the town's historic link with rail transportation in the 19th century.

(Photo by Phil Roberts, summer, 2007)


















Fountain in downtown area of Sinclair, Wyoming. Sinclair was founded in the early 1920s as a "company town" by the Producers' and Refiners' Company (PARCO). Initially named "Parco" for the company, the townsite and refinery were sold from the steps of the Carbon County Courthouse in a bankruptcy sale on April 12, 1934. Purchased by the Consolidated Oil Company for $1,775,000, the town was renamed "Sinclair" in December, 1942. Consolidated had become Sinclair Oil Company. Lots and structures in the town were sold to residents in 1967 and the refinery became part of Atlantic Richfield when Sinclair merged with that company in 1970. After a series of complex mergers and sales, the present Sinclair Oil Company purchased the refinery in July 1976.  (Phil Roberts photo, summer, 2007)

















Down It Goes: On Sunday morning, October 7, 2007, demolition crews finished bringing down the former home of the UW College of Law (1952-77) and UW Department of Anthropology. The site was cleared to make way for the new addition to Coe Library. (Photo by Phil Roberts)















The Tetons from across Jackson Lake, summer 2007. Phil Roberts photograph.
























Lander Cut-off marker, Sublette County, summer, 2007.












Grain elevator, Chugwater, Wyoming, summer 2007






This building was occupied by the UW College of Law until 1977 when the college moved to

a new location in the east campus area. The building became home to the Department of

Anthropology. That department moved to its new building on Lewis Street in the summer

of 2007. The pictured building was razed, making way for a new addition to Coe Library.


















Light poles west of Old Main, campus of the University of Wyoming













Union Pacific Depot, Cheyenne, as seen from a window of the UP Roundhouse. Two professors, Phil Roberts in History and Rob Godby in Economics, taught a class in the fall of 2007 on the history of the Union Pacific Railroad across Wyoming. Among the field trips the class took was a visit to the Cheyenne roundhouse and rail facilities.












New UW faculty/staff in September 2006 toured the TA Ranch barn, location of the "last stand" of the Invaders in the Johnson County War, April 1892.











Hat Creek School/Clubhouse in Niobrara County. Photograph by Phil Roberts, Sept. 2006


For more photographs, go to Wyoming Album


Past Lists and Items from Wyoming Almanac--



Riding the Cow-Catcher

Laramie Daily Sentinel, May 26, 1870:

     "One of the excursions today from the east met with a very singular adventure and a narrow escape, withal. A young lady, Miss Mattie L. Evarts, a correspondent of the Chicago Evening Journal, in company with Charles Whited of the telegraph construction corps and E. E. Ludlow, an operator, got upon the cow-catcher, or pilot of the engine at Sherman for a novel ride. They had it. 

    "When about half way down the mountains to this city, it commenced to hail and rain pouring down in torrents. When within about two miles of this place, the engine ran into a steer that stood upon the track. The creature was instantly killed at their feet; but fortunately was thrown from the pilot and track instead of being piled up on the party, or throwing the engine from the track as might have been expected. 

    "The train was running at great speed and it was a thrilling adventure and narrow escape.  We were at the depot when they came in still maintaining their ground, but we were informed the young lady was the coolest and least excited of the party." 



8 Uranium Discoveries in Wyoming


1. Lusk, 1918

    The initial discovery in Wyoming was on Silver Cliff, northwest of downtown Lusk.

2. Red Desert, 1936

    Just as in the case of the Lusk discovery nearly two decades earlier, the finders saw no commercial value in developing the deposit.

3. Black Hills, Crook County, 1949

    Following World War II and the successful development of the atomic bomb, USGS employees noted uranium deposits in the West but private exploitation of the mineral had not begun.

4. Pumpkin Buttes, Campbell County, 1951

    The discovery, in the buttes in southern Campbell County, was made in the fall of 1951 by USGS geologist J. David Love.

5. Gas Hills, Fremont County, 1953

    Initial discovery was made Sept. 13 by Neil McNeice and his wife Maxine. They were antelope hunting in the area and decided to take along a Geiger counter. McNeice had worked for Sinclair Oil from 1928 until the fall of 1947 when he opened a machine shop in Riverton. He filed for the claim in late September of 1953. Within a month of his filing, 140 claims were staked in the area. By the end of 1954, the number had grown to more than 4,000. McNeice formed Lucky Mc Uranium Mining Company to mine and process the uranium.

6. Jeffrey City area, 1955

    Bob Adams, a Rawlins restaurant owner and WWII veteran, organized the Lost Creek Oil and Uranium Company in 1955 to mine and process uranium in the area. One of his investors was Dr. Charles W. Jeffrey, Rawlins physician, for whom the town was named.

7. Big Horn Mountains, east of Ten Sleep, 1956

    Dozens of miners descended on the site in the initial excitement, but it was soon clear that the discovery was minor. By 1958, only three claims were still active in the area.

8. Converse County

    In the late 1990s, two uranium plants opened in the vicinity of Douglas--Highland Uranium project and the Smith Ranch project.


5 Wyomingites in the President's Cabinet


  1. Stan Hathaway, Secretary of the Interior, 1975

    Hathaway served two terms as Wyoming governor prior to his appointment by President Gerald Ford to the Cabinet. The Senate confirmed his nomination by a vote of 60-36 after contentious hearings. Hathaway held the job for six weeks, resigning due to ill health and frustration with the bureaucracy. He returned to practice law in Wyoming.

    2. James Watt, Secretary of the Interior, 1981-83

    Watt, born in Lusk in 1938, was educated in Wheatland and the University of Wyoming. He was appointed to the Cabinet from Colorado, however, where he was working for a legal foundation. His term was marked by numerous clashes between the Reagan administration and environmental organizations.  In 1983, he resigned and returned to the private sector.

    3. Paul Carlin, U. S. Postmaster General, 1985-86

    Born in California, Carlin was a graduate of the University of Wyoming where he was a NCAA All-American in track. Technically, the Postmaster General was no longer considered a presidential Cabinet officer after 1971 when the U. S. Postal Service was substantially reorganized.  His name is included here because of the historical role of past Postmasters General.

    4. Richard Cheney, Secretary of Defense, 1989-1993

    Cheney was nominated to the post by President George H. W. Bush after the Senate refused to confirm John Tower to the position. He resigned as U. S. Representative from Wyoming in order to accept the appointment. In 1993, he returned to the private sector, serving as CEO of Halliburton in Texas. On July 25, 2000, he was chosen to be George W. Bush's vice presidential running-mate. He became the only Wyomingite ever to serve as U. S. Vice President, serving until January 20, 2009

    5. Norman Mineta, Secretary of Commerce, 2000; Secretary of Transportation, 2001-06

    Mineta was born in California in 1931, but during his youth, he and his family were incarcerated at Heart Mountain Relocation Center between Cody and Powell because they were Americans of Japanese descent who had been living on the West Coast at the time World War II began. He attended school in Heart Mountain, returning with his family to California after the war when the camp was closed. While in Heart Mountain, he was in the Boy Scouts where he became acquainted with Peter and Al Simpson, fellow Boy Scouts in the nearby Cody troop who would meet occasionally at the relocation camp.


Five Wyoming Rocks Containing Historical "Graffiti"


1. Independence Rock

    The granite outcropping, more than a mile in circumference, reaches a height of 136 feet above the surrounding area. Discovered by Robert Stuart's "reverse Astorian" party in 1812, it became known as "Independence Rock" in 1830 when mountain men celebrated the Fourth of July there. Trail lore warned overland trail travelers that if they did not reach Independence Rock by the Fourth of July, their trek over the Blue Mountains of Oregon or the Sierra Madres in California might be problematic. Father DeSmet stopped at the rock in 1840, en route to the last rendezvous. He applied to it the nickname "Great Register of the Desert" because of all of the names of travelers who were already carving their names into it.

2. Register Cliff

    The chalky limestone formation, located three miles south of Guernsey, rises about 100 feet above the valley. Many of the names carved on the cliff date from the 1840s and 1850s, during the peak years of Oregon Trail travel.

3. Names Hill

    Located in western Wyoming, Names Hill has caved in it names dating back as far as 1822. One the rock is chiseled the name "James Bridger--1844."  If it is authentic, the inscription must have been done for Bridger by a friend. The legendary mountain man was unable to read or write--even his name.

4. Sandstone cliffs, North Platte River crossing, near present Saratoga

    The earliest inscription is of a pioneer who carved his name there in 1847.

5. Old Balance Rock

    Travelers along the overland stageline wrote their names on the unusual formation, one mile from the site of Sulphur Springs Stage Station in Carbon County.


6 Wyoming Name Changes


1. "Rawlins Springs"

    Originally named for Gen. John A. Rawlins by his friend Gen. Grenville Dodge, the "springs" portion of the name was dropped early in the town's existence. The same thing happened to the "city" behind the names of Laramie and Green River in the 19th century.

2. "Shoshone Dam"

    Renamed Buffalo Bill Dam in 1946, the dam was once the highest in the world when it was completed in 1910. Col. Cody was a strong proponent of irrigation and the dam on the Shoshone River was renamed in his honor.

3. "Stinkingwater River"

    The name was applied to the river by its first white discoverer, John Colter, in 1807. The river was officially renamed the "Shoshone River" by legislative act in 1901, to the relief of Cody area residents who argued strongly for a change of name, fearing the original might not be healthy for encouraging visitation by tourists.

4. "Carter County"

    Originally named in 1867 to honor the Fort Bridger judge and post sutler William A. Carter, it was renamed "Sweetwater County" by the legislature on Dec. 13, 1869, three days after Gov. John A. Campbell signed that legislature's most famous act, the Suffrage Bill, granting women equal political rights in the new territory.

5. "Pease County"

    The county was named in 1875 to honor Dr. E. L. Pease, a Uinta County physician. When young Cheyenne attorney E. P. Johnson died on Oct. 3, 1879, the legislature renamed the county in his memory, effective Dec. 13, 1879.

6. "Home on the Range"

    Originally named for postmaster Beulah Peterson's highway cafe and store, the site was renamed "Jeffrey City" for Dr. Charles W. Jeffrey, Rawlins physician and investor, who owned stock in area uranium companies.  For a complete story of the community, see John Egan, "Home on the Range No More: Boom and Bust in Jeffrey City," in Phil Roberts, ed., Readings in Wyoming History (Laramie, 1993).


5 Pioneer Wyoming Women Who Practiced Medicine


1. Dr. Lillian Heath Nelson, Rawlins

    The first woman to be licensed to practice medicine in the state, Dr. Nelson graduated from a medical school in the Midwest. A native of Rawlins, she returned to that city in 1893 and practiced full-time there until 1909. After that year, she continued to practice on a part-time basis and maintained her medical license, the fifth issued to any doctor in Wyoming, until her death in 1962.

2. Dr. Flora Hayward Stanford, Sundance

    Dr. Stanford moved to Crook County in 1897 from the Black Hills of South Dakota where she had been practicing for many years. She homesteaded near Sundance and died in 1901.

3. Dr. Frances M. Lane, Cody

    Born in Ohio, Dr. Lane was the daughter of a nationally renowned architect. She graduated from medical school in Chicago in 1900 and moved to Cody two years later. From 1905-10, she served as a contract physician to the U. S. Bureau of Reclamation on the Shoshone Irrigation Project. Although she had many admirers, her feud with Cody newspaper editor Caroline Lockhart resulted in Dr. Lane's unflattering portrayal as the title character in Lockhart's novel, Lady Doc.

4. Dr. Caroline Amelia Daniels Mills,  Evanston

    Born in Provo, Utah, Dr. Mills was one of the first graduates of what became Brigham Young University. Following her marriage in 1882, she moved to Evanston where her husband was a store clerk. In the 1890s, she attended medical school in Iowa City, Iowa. She was the mother of five children, the second-youngest born while she was a medical student. After graduation in 1895, she returned to Evanston and opened a medical practice. For a time, she practiced in Cokeville where her husband operated a general store. In 1910, the family moved to Salt Lake City, but where her husband died four years later, she returned to Wyoming and practiced medicine in the Bridger Valley until her retirement from medicine in 1928.

5. Dr. Florence Patrick, Rock River

    Dr. Patrick opened her medical practice in Albany County soon after the turn of the 20th century. Along with practicing medicine, she helped organize and took a leadership in various civic organizations. She served as state chair of the American Women's Hospitals in World War I. She retired in the 1930s and spent the remainder of her life living near Garrett, Wyoming.


7 Civil War Generals Who Had Wyoming Places Named for Them


1. Philip Kearny

    The major general who was a nephew of Gen. Stephen Watts Kearny, was killed Sept. 1, 1862, in the battle of Chantilly, Virginia. Fort Phil Kearny in north central Wyoming was named for him. The fort was constructed by troops under the command of Col. Henry Carrington in 1866. Following the so-called "Fetterman fight" on Dec. 21, 1866, and the ensuing treaty negotiations, the fort was abandoned and, later, burned.

2. David A. Russell

    Russell, a brigadier general in the Union Army, was killed at the Battle of Winchester, Virginia, on Sept. 19, 1864. Until 1930, when the name was changed to Fort Warren, the military installation near Cheyenne was named Fort Russell. In the early 1950s, the name was changed once again to Warren Air Force Base, the name it retains.

3. Philip Sheridan

    Sheridan is the most populous Wyoming town named for a Civil War general. It was so named because Gen. Sheridan had been the commanding officer of one of the town's founders. Gen. Sheridan, a native of Albany, N. Y., died Aug. 5, 1888.

4. Frederick Lander

    The town of Lander was named for Gen. Frederick Lander who surveyed the "Lander road" in the 1850s.  (See photo of marker below). Gen. Lander served in the Civil War and died March 2, 1862, near Paw Paw, Va., of an illness while preparing for an attack on the Confederate forces occupying Winchester, Va. He had been wounded in the battle of Edward's Ferry on Oct. 22, 1861, and probably died from the long-term effects of that injury.

5. John A. Rawlins

    Rawlins, a native of Galena, Illinois, was acquainted with U. S. Grant long before the Civil War. When Grant became commander of Union forces, Rawlins was appointed his adjutant. Later, when Grant became President, he appointed Rawlins as his Secretary of War, but Rawlins served less than a year before he died from tuberculosis on Sept. 6, 1869.  Gen. Rawlins had been part of the survey party on the transcontinental railroad with Gen. Grenville Dodge who named the spring near present Rawlins for the general.

6. George Crook

    Crook already had extensive military experience in the West when he began service in the Civil War. He participated in many engagements, including South Mountain and Antietam. He was a cavalry commander in the battle of Chickamauga. He later commanded forces in the Virginia campaigns of 1864-65.  Crook continued his military service in the West after the war, becoming well known for battles against Indians. He commanded forces in the battle of the Rosebud, just prior to the Little Big Horn battle in Montana in June 1876.  He died March 21, 1890, just four months before Wyoming statehood. Crook County was named for him in 1875.

7.  John C. Fremont

    Like Crook, Fremont already had a long military career prior to the Civil War. He also was nationally famous, not only for his explorations of the West, but for his nomination by the newly-organized Republican Party in 1856 as the party's first presidential candidate. Fremont County was named for him in 1884, but there were many other geographical features already named for the famous "Pathfinder," including Fremont Peak and Fremont Lake. Later, "Pathfinder Dam" was named for him.  He died July 13, 1890, just three days after President Harrison signed the bill making Wyoming the 44th state. On August 1, 1842, Fremont shot the first photograph ever made in Wyoming. Photography was just becoming known in America at the time. Unfortunately, either the film processing failed or the camera malfunctioned and no print was made.


And a Wyoming place named for the uncle of a Civil War general:


Jackson's Hole and the town of Jackson was named for trapper David E. Jackson who frequented the area in the 19th century. While he was not a Civil War general, his nephew, Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson was--in the Confederate Army.


Wyoming Senators and U. S. Representatives Born in Wyoming


1. Robert D. Carey, b. in Cheyenne, 1878

     Carey was elected governor in 1918 and lost in the primary in 1922 for a second term. In 1930, he was elected to one term in the U. S. Senate. His father was Joseph M. Carey, himself both a Wyoming governor and U. S. Senator.

2. Edward Crippa, b. in Rock Springs, 1899

     Crippa was appointed by acting Gov. C. J. "Doc" Rogers to fill out the term of Lester Hunt. Crippa served from June 24 to Nov. 28, 1954, not seeking reelection to the seat.

3. J. J. "Joe" Hickey, b. in Rawlins, 1911

     Hickey was elected governor in 1958. In 1960, he was appointed to fill out the unexpired term of Keith Thomson until the next general election in 1962. He ran unsuccessfully for a full term in the Senate.

4. Milward Simpson, b. in Jackson, 1897

     Simpson served as governor from 1955 to 1959. He ran for reelection, but lost to Joe Hickey.  In 1962, he faced Hickey once again, but for the remaining four years of the late Keith Thomson's seat in the U. S. Senate. This time, Simpson came out the winner. It was the first U. S. Senate election in state history where both candidates were Wyoming-born.  Simpson's son, Al Simpson, also served in the U. S. Senate, but he was not born in Wyoming. While his parents were residents of Cody at the time of his birth, his mother was visiting Denver when he was born in 1931.

5. Clifford P. Hansen, b. in Teton County, 1912

     Hansen was elected governor in 1962. He served one term before being elected to the U. S. Senate in 1966. His opponent that year was another Wyoming native, Teno Roncalio.

6. Keith Thomson, b. in Newcastle, 1919

      Thomson served three terms as U. S . Representative from Wyoming until he was elected to the U. S. Senate in 1960. He died soon after the election, prior to the swearing-in ceremonies for the U. S. Senate.

7. Teno Roncalio, b. in Rock Springs, b. 1916

      Roncalio was elected to the U. S. House in 1964. He unsuccessfully ran for the U. S. Senate in 1966. He was reelected to the U. S. House in 1970 where he served until his retirement in 1979. Nebraska-born Dick Cheney defeated Democratic candidate Bill Bagley for the House seat in 1978.

8. Craig Thomas, b. in Cody, 1933

     Thomas first won election to the U. S. House in 1989 in a special election to fill out the unexpired term of Dick Cheney who resigned to become Secretary of Defense in the Bush I administration. Thomas moved to the U. S. Senate in 1994, defeating Wyoming-born Mike Sullivan who had served two terms as Wyoming governor. Thomas died in office in June 2007.


4 Well-Known Authors Who Wrote in Wyoming


1. Ernest Hemingway (1899-1961)

    Hemingway wrote part of A Farewell to Arms while he was a guest at the Sheridan Inn in 1928. His short story, "The Wine of Wyoming," was written in 1930. That year, he fished on the Clark's Fork north of Cody and proclaimed it "the best fishing spot on earth." He married his third wife, author Martha Gellhorn, in Cheyenne on Nov. 21, 1940. In July 1944, his fourth wife, Mary, became ill during a trip across the state. She had surgery in the Casper hospital.

2. Charles King (1844-1933)

    A cavalry officer stationed at Fort Laramie for five years, King wrote more than 50 novels in his career. Laramie, or the Queen of Bedlam (1911) is representative of the military Western for which he is best known.

3. John Masters (1914-1983)

    Author of numerous novels about British India, Masters ranched in the Absarokas near Cody. He was born in Calcutta, India, a fifth-generation English colonialist in that country. Following graduation from Sandhurst, the British military academy, he served in various units of the Indian army, including a unit of the famous Gurkha Rifles. He retired in 1948, moved to the United States, and became a U. S. citizen in 1954. Most of his numerous books are set in India, including the autobiographical novel Bugles and a Tiger (1956). Masters died in Santa Fe, N. M., in May 1983.

4. Zane Grey (1875-1939)

    Although Grey visited Wyoming only briefly, he frequently used the state as a setting in his novels. Among his better works set in Wyoming are The U. P. Trail (1918) and Last of the Plainsmen (1911). Even his most loyal fans would agree that Wyoming, published in 1918, is one of his worst novels.


5 Famous Visitors to Fur Trade Rendezvous in Wyoming


1. Sir William Drummond Stewart (1833, 1836, 1837, 1838)

    On his first visit in 1833, the Scottish nobleman paid $500 to William Sublette's fur trading company to make the trip. In 1837 he brought artist Alfred Jacob Miller with him to make sketches and paintings of the Wind River country. Miller later went back to Scotland with Stewart to execute a series of oil paintings to be hung in Stewart's ancestral home, Murthley Castle, Pershshire.

2. Ben Harrison (1833)

    The son of President William Henry Harrison accompanied the same traveling party that included Stewart. His father, having served briefly as U. S. ambassador to Columbia, became clerk of the Court of Common Pleas in Ohio the following year, in order to overcome financial adversity (perhaps aided by paying his son's "passage" with the Sublette company the previous year). William Henry Harrison was elected President in 1840, dying in office after serving only one month in 1841.

3. Dr. Marcus Whitman  (1835, 1836)

    During Dr. Whitman's first visit to the rendezvous, he operated on Jim Bridger, removing an arrow point from the mountainman's back--a wound Bridger had received two years earlier. Whitman continued West to establish his mission in Oregon Territory, returning East later in the year. He made a second trip to the rendezvous in 1836, this time accompanied by his wife Narcissa, again en route to his mission.

4. Capt. B. L. E. Bonneville (1832-35)

    Bonneville was one of more than 1,000 people attending the Pierre's Hole rendezvous in 1832. The following year, the rendezvous was held on the upper Green River, near where Bonneville had established "Fort Bonneville" (nicknamed "Fort Nonsense").

5. Father Pierre Jean DeSmet  (1840)

    Three Protestant missionaries also accompanied the Andrew Drips led caravan to the last rendezvous in 1840. DeSmet celebrated the first Roman Catholic mass in what would be Wyoming.


1st Car Owners in Some Wyoming Towns


        Wyoming's first car was built by Laramie bicycle shop owner Elmer Lovejoy. In May 1898, he finished assembling the parts he had ordered for the machine and took it for a spin along Laramie's unpaved streets. Not only was it the first car in Wyoming, it was one of the very first motor vehicles west of the Mississippi.


1. Rawlins

        Dr. John Osborne, a medical doctor and sheep rancher who had served as Wyoming governor in the 1890s and represented Wyoming in Congress, brought the first car to Rawlins about 1900.

2. Sheridan

        O. P. Hanna began an "auto-stage line" between Sheridan and Buffalo in late October 1901. The first car, driven to Sheridan from Omaha in a trip that took almost ten days, had a capacity of nine passengers. Earl Eaton owned a 20-horsepower Cadillac in 1906. By 1909, more than 30 locally-owned cars negotiated Sheridan streets.

3. Cheyenne

        Dr. W. W. Crook brought the first car to Cheyenne, a single-cylinder, curved-dash Oldsmobile, on Sept. 1, 1903. The vehicle cost him $750 and he used it regularly to make house calls.

4. Douglas

        A chain-driven, two-cylinder Rambler, owned by Friday Nelson was the first car in Douglas, brought there in 1905. Nelson sold rides in it for 50 cents. Four years later, there were 13 cars owned by Douglas residents.

5. Weston County

        The first car driven in the county was owned by T. V. Garlock of Custer, S. D., who drove it to the county fair in 1905. The first local owner was John Sedgwick, a sheepman, whose Model N Ford was delivered, disassembled, in a large box wrapped in heavy paper. Sedgwick put the pieces together from the instructions included in the kit. According to a local news account at the time, the $1,150 car, "literally flies, making the distance between town and the Sedgwick ranch in 30 minutes....He tried to climb a telephone pole one day and got stalled halfway up. At another time he tried turning a corner at a 40-mile clip and as a consequence, turned several somersaults before landing. Dr. Johnson attended him."

6. Buffalo

        The car was a high-wheel Holzman owned by Frank Gatchell, the county surveyor, brought to Buffalo in 1906. Eight cars were owned by Buffalo residents by 1909.


11 Wyoming Newspapers Founded Before Statehood and Still Publishing in 2007


1. Wyoming State Tribune, Cheyenne (1867)

        The paper began as the Cheyenne Leader in September 1867, barely two months after Cheyenne was founded. The Tribune's first issue was published in 1884 and it later merged with the Leader. On April 4, 1994, the Tribune and the Eagle merged into a morning-only newspaper.

2. Rock Springs Rocket-Miner (1880)

        The two newspapers published separately until the end of the 19th century when the two papers merged.

3. Laramie Boomerang (March 11, 1881)

        First editor was famous humorist Bill Nye who named the newspaper for his mule, Boomerang. The mule gained the name because, as Nye said, the mule would run away, but always come back just like a boomerang.

4. Wyoming State Journal, Lander (1885)  

5. Lusk Herald (May 20, 1886)

6. Douglas Budget (1886)

        The paper was first known as "Bill Barlow's Budget," named for the editor, M. C. Barrow, who used "Bill Barlow" as a pen name.

7. Sheridan Press (May 19, 1887)

        The paper was founded as the Sheridan Post; it became the Press in 1930).

8. Saratoga Sun (June 7, 1888)

        The paper, founded as the "Platte Valley Lyre," was once edited by two sisters, Grace and Laura Huntington.

9. Basin Republican-Rustler (June 1, 1889)

        The paper is a merger between the Big Horn County Rustler, founded in 1889, and the newer Basin Republican.

10. Newcastle News Letter Journal (1889)

        The Newcastle paper's name reflects two mergers during the newspaper's long history.

11. Rawlins Daily Times (1889)

        The paper was first known as the Rawlins Republican, adopting its current name in 1946.


10 Significant Fires in Wyoming History


1. Cheyenne, Jan. 11, 1870

    Two city blocks were wiped out and almost 80 buildings burned. After the fire, Cheyenne merchants rebuilt most structures using brick as the primary building material.

2. Rawlins, July 18, 1912

    Prisoners rioted at the State Penitentiary and burned the broom factory on the prison grounds. In the ensuing melee, 27 prisoners escaped and one Rawlins resident was killed by an escapee. It was the most serious prison riot in state history.

3. Lingle, fall, 1920

    The town's first laundry burned to the ground, killing its owner. On the night of the fire, money was collected to begin the Lingle Volunteer Fire Department.

4. Casper, June 17, 1921

    Lightning ignited seven tanks in the Midwest Oil Company's tank farm overlooking the city. The fire burned steadily for 60 hours and consumed more than a half million gallons of oil.

5. Hulett, Jan. 4, 1925

    Fire destroyed the bank, hotel, pool hall and the Odd Fellows Hall, a large portion of the downtown business district.

6. Sinclair, April 5, 1927

    An explosion ripped through the oil refinery and, in the ensuing fire, 16 people died. It was the worst fire in state history in terms of loss of life.

7. Torrington, Dec. 7, 1933

    A natural gas explosion killed one man and injured four at a downtown bank.

8. Riverton, Feb. 20, 1951

    Fires destroyed the Ben Franklin store and several adjacent structures. A barber died in the blaze that broke out in sub-zero weather.

9. Cody, May 1974

    Cody fire chief Bob Moore and a Cody Enterprise photographer died when the newspaper plant burned in an arson-set blaze.

10. Newcastle, Dec. 18, 1998

     Four Main Street stores, each more than a century old, burned.










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