Wyoming Logo is Exclusive Property of Mary and Don Saban. Perpetual Copyright 1998 All Rights Reserved.



A good part of the area that is now Wyoming was part of the Louisiana Purchase in 1803. However, a small section of southwestern Wyoming had been ceded by Spain to Mexico in 1821. When Texas ceded from Mexico in 1835, that small part of Wyoming then became part of the Republic of Texas which of course became part of the United States when the Republic of Texas was annexed. Another very small part of western Wyoming had been part of the Oregon Country. It was not until Russia relinquished her claims to the Oregon Country in 1824 and England in 1846 that it too became a part of the United States.

The Lewis and Clark Expedition in 1804 through 1806 came through north of Wyoming into what is now Montana. Some believe that since Sacajaweja was Shoshone, they may have traveled south into Wyoming where her people were encamped.

The first white man known to travel into what became Wyoming was John Colter. He spent the winter of 1807 in the Cody and Jackson Hole area of the state. The start of the Wyoming fur trade is attributed to John Colter. To find out more about the fur traders, visit the Library of Western Fur Trade located at http://www.xmission.com/~drudy/mtman/mmarch.html .

MAIL - 1849 The federal government authorized mail delivery between Kamesville, Missouri and Salt Lake City. The overland route used was through Wyoming.

  • First four year mail contract was given to Samuel H. Woodson of Independence, Missouri starting 1 July 1850. He used mules.

  • The next mail contract was given to W.M.F. Macgraw, using four-horse coaches.

  • Hiram Kimball was awarded a contract in 1856 by The B.Y. Express Company of Salt Lake City.

  • In 1858 the Utah War (The Mormon War) prompted the federal government to award an emergency contract S. B. Miles.

  • Later in 1858 J. M. Hockaday and his partners received a contract from May 1, 1858 to November 1860.

FREIGHT - 1855, Russell, Majors and Waddell started a business which lasted five years. At one point in their prime they owned 3,500 wagons.

  • Because of the increased traffic along the routes, the federal government in 1857 established a Pacific Wagon Road Office within the Department of Interior.

PONY EXPRESS - 1860 - comprised of 190 stations between St. Joseph Missouri and Sacramento, California. owned by Russell, Majors and Waddell. In its short life, it carried 34,753 items of mail - only lost one. The riders traveled a total of 616,000 miles - 380 runs each way.

TELEGRAPH - Authorized on June 16, 1860 by Congress, the Pacific Telegraph Company was formed. Relay stations were set up between 50 and 75 miles apart.

(Source of mail, freight, pony express and telegraph: Dangerous Duty by John D. McDermott).

And in 1869, Wyoming became it's own territory. The word Wyoming is a Delaware Indian word, meaning "at the end of the plains" or "Algonquin or Delaware Indian word meaning "large prairie place" . It had been chosen by Sen. James M. Ashley, who in 1865, hailed from the Wyoming Valley of Pennsylvania. Those years, and the ones succeeding them, are filled with tales of gold, fur, conflict, wars, settlers, cowboys, sheep, cattle, trains, stage coaches, Indians and much more. The Indians were here first and must by any account be given the honor of being Wyoming's first inhabitants, long before the name came into being. Who lived here before the Indians is up to the the Archaelogists to determine.

Tips for Stagecoach Riders - from our files

First Territorial Governor

John Allen Campbell, native of Ohio

First Territorial Secretary

Edward Merwin Lee, native of Connecticut

First Territorial Auditor

Benjamin Gallagher, native of Iowa

First Territorial Treasurer

John W. Donnellan, native of County Clare, Ireland

First Territorial Supreme Court Chief Justice

John H. Howe, native of Illinois

First Territorial Supreme Court Justices

John W. Kingham, native of New Hampshire and William T. Jones, native of Indiana.

First Territorial United States Attorney

Joseph M. Carey, native of Pennsylvania

First Territorial Congressional delegate

Stephen F. Nickolls, a native of Virginia

  • First Territorial Legislature went into a 50 day session on October 12, 1869.

  • William H. Bright, of South Pass City was President of the Council. S. M. Curran of Carbon County was Speaker of the House.

  • Cheyenne was named the territorial capital.

  • The penitentiary was established at Laramie.

  • Woman Suffrage Bill passed, creating an historic piece of legislation that is a very positive part of Wyoming's history.


1890 - Wyoming became the 44th state in the Union on July 10, 1890. Read the Wyoming Constitution.

1925 - Nellie Tayloe Ross appointed as Governor to replace her husband, was the First Woman Governor in the United States.


As of 07/11/2012, 267 on line holdings at Nara


Population - 2000 Census - 493,782



State Bird - Western Meadow Lark

State Capital - Cheyenne

State Flag - "A bison on a blue field bordered in white and red. The state seal branded on the bison. The woman represents the state motto "Equal Rights" and the two men represent cattle ranchers and miners. The words "Livestock", "Mines", "Grains" and "Oil" represent Wyoming's wealth. The eagle and shield show support for the United States. The dates 1869 and 1890 tell when Wyoming organized as a territory of the United States and when it became a state." Source: http://www.50states.com/wyoming.htm

State Flower - Indian Paintbrush

State Motto - Equal Rights

State Song - "Wyoming" by Charles E. Winter

State Tree - Cottonwood Populus sargentii


Page created November 9, 2002 by Mary Thompson Saban. Perpetual Copyright 2002 All Rights Reserved.

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Page last updated 01/18/2014