Among the Wyoming women eager to exercise their right at the ballot box in the fall of 1870 was South Pass City’s very own Esther Morris. By that time, she had become a living legend among not only women in Wyoming, but those across the entire United States.
Orphaned at fourteen, supporting herself as a hat-maker, she learned to stand up for herself – and others. She’d supported the abolition of slavery long before the Civil War. After being widowed a second time and then denied the right to inherit her late husband’s Illinois property because women were prohibited from owning property, she became a women’s rights advocate.
Fort Sanders was originally developed to protect and aid the wagon trains for the Overland trail and the Stagecoach routes through Wyoming. General Grenville Dodge determined that the best route through Wyoming would be a straight route through the southern part of the state. As a result, Fort Sanders became one of the defacto forts to provide protection for the railroad workers and towns people that inevitably grew up around the railroad construction. These end of line towns were many as the steam trains could only travel about 12 miles a day in the beginning.
Laramie City grew very quickly, becoming a major town in southeastern Wyoming. The only town larger than Laramie at this time was Cheyenne. Above is a drawing of the town in 1875. Compare it to the 1870 drawing and you can see the growth that was rapidly occurring.
The Union Pacific Rolling Mill was constructed in 1875 to “re-roll” old railroad rails and other metals. The mill employed approximately 100 people, and its presence might have been the springboard for further industrial development in Albany County until it burned down in 1910.
Fires were a hazard everywhere, but in the early days of Laramie, the best one could do was let things burn and hope they did not spread. Eventually, a volunteer fire department was formed and a bucket brigade was put into place to alleviate spreading disaster.
On February 19, 1889, the editors at the Boomerang stated that the original 1868 east to west street names of A, B, C etc. and the north to south numbered streets were not becoming of a modern metropolis in the late 1800’s. So, on that day the paper suggested an update was necessary.
Charlie Bristol & Sister Sadie after a bicycle trip to Laramie. When man first invented the wheel, who could have imagined he would have so much fun on two of them? With the advent of the bicycle, people in Laramie loved the new form of transportation to travel through the flat terrain of the city.
Cavalryman Steakhouse is located on the parade grounds of historic Fort Sanders, established in July of 1866. Originally named Fort Buford, for Major General John Buford, the post was designated Fort Sanders on September 5, 1866, in honor of Brigadier General William P. Sanders.
The Cavalryman Steakhouse building was built in 1925 to serve as the clubhouse for the local country club. Just to the east, remnants of the nine-hole golf course can still be found.
One of the earliest ranches in the Laramie Valley was the Bath Brothers Ranch, which began in the spring of 1868, when Herman Bath and his immediate and extended family immigrated to the Wyoming Territory from Germany. Today, the Bath Brothers Ranch is 135 years old and still remains in the Bath Family.
As Laramie grew and the town spread out, businesses and attitudes were changing as the century was coming to a close. Many business people closed up shop and tried ranching and dry-farming. Along with the Cattle boom in the 1880’s, came many settlers and ranchers. The population was growing quickly in Laramie.
Jim Bridger (James Felix Bridger) was among the foremost mountain men, trappers, scouts and guides who explored and trapped in the Western United States during the decades of 1820-1850. He also helped mediate between native tribes and encroaching white settlers.
The aerial view of the University of Wyoming campus in this photograph shows how the city of Laramie was expanding to the east, bordering university property at 9th Street. The Green Hill Cemetery is at the top left of the picture. Corbett Field can be spotted at the top right, next to Half Acre gym. Old Main is pictured halfway down on the right side. Today, the University has grown to encompass all of this property.
Although Jane Ivinson of Laramie wrote (some 31 years later) that she and her family rode on the first Union Pacific Railroad (UPRR) train into Laramie on May 10, 1868, other accounts give different dates of when the first train actually arrived.