How To Use This Site

How To Use This Site

This blog was updated on a daily basis for about two years, with those daily entries ceasing on December 31, 2013. The blog is still active, however, and we hope that people stopping in, who find something lacking, will add to the daily entries.

The blog still receives new posts as well, but now it receives them on items of Wyoming history. That has always been a feature of the blog, but Wyoming's history is rich and there are many items that are not fully covered here, if covered at all. Over time, we hope to remedy that.

You can obtain an entire month's listings by hitting on the appropriate month below, or an individual day by hitting on that calendar date.

We hope you enjoy this site.

Saturday, November 30, 2013

November 30

1782 Britain recognizes US independence.

1803 Spain cedes Louisiana to France, including, of course, that part which is now Wyoming.

1810 Oliver Fisher Winchester born.

1856  Martin's Cove survivors arrive in Salt Lake City.

1869  Woman's suffrage bill sent to the Territorial House.

1914  International  Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local Union #322 chartered in Casper.

1916:   The Cheyenne Leader for November 30, 1916: A National Guard Casualty

Only meriting a small entry at the bottom of the page, we learn on this day that Wyoming National Guardsman Pvt. Frank J. Harzog, who enlisted from Sheridan, died in Deming of encephalitis.  He was to be buried at Ft. Bliss, so he wold never make it home.

Too often soldiers who die in peacetime are simply forgotten; their deaths not recognized as being in the service of the country. But they are.  Indeed, the year after I was in basic training a solider who was in my training platoon, a National Guardsman from Nebraska, died in training in a vehicle accident.  A Cold War death as sure as any other.
Thanksgiving Day, 1916
November 23 was Thanksgiving Day in 1916.  Woodrow Wilson issued a proclamation to that effect on November 17, 1916.
By the President of the United States of America
A Proclamation
It has long been the custom of our people to turn in the fruitful autumn of the year in praise and thanksgiving to Almighty God for His many blessings and mercies to us as a nation. The year that has elapsed since we last observed our day of thanksgiving has been rich in blessings to us as a people, but the whole face of the world has been darkened by war. In the midst of our peace and happiness, our thoughts dwell with painful disquiet upon the struggles and sufferings of the nations at war and of the peoples upon whom war has brought disaster without choice or possibility of escape on their part. We cannot think of our own happiness without thinking also of their pitiful distress.
Now, Therefore, I, Woodrow Wilson, President of the United States of America, do appoint Thursday, the thirtieth of November, as a day of National Thanksgiving and Prayer, and urge and advise the people to resort to their several places of worship on that day to render thanks to Almighty God for the blessings of peace and unbroken prosperity which He has bestowed upon our beloved country in such unstinted measure. And I also urge and suggest our duty in this our day of peace and abundance to think in deep sympathy of the stricken peoples of the world upon whom the curse and terror of war has so pitilessly fallen, and to contribute out of our abundant means to the relief of their suffering. Our people could in no better way show their real attitude towards the present struggle of the nations than by contributing out of their abundance to the relief of the suffering which war has brought in its train.
In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the seal of the United States to be affixed.
Done at the City of Washington this seventeenth day of November, in the year of our Lord one thousand nine hundred and sixteen and of the independence of the United States the one hundred and forty-first.
It must have been a stressful one for a lot of people.  War was raging in Europe and a lot of Wyomingites were serving on the border with Mexico.  The local economy was booming, and there were a lot of changes going on in the towns, but due to the international conflict.

1920  Bureau of Reclamation commences construction of electric power plant at Buffalo Bill Dam.

1927   First day of Fremont County Turkey Show in Lander.  Attribution, Wyoming Historical Association.

1943  The price of coal from Rock Springs was raised $.20 per ton, a fairly substantial climb in that era.  Coal was an extremely vital source of fuel in this time period, although petroleum oil was supplanting it in many ways.  Attribution:  Wyoming State Historical Society.

1946  Barbara Cubin, Congresswoman from Wyoming, born in Salinas California.

2012  Wyoming Whiskey releases the first batches of its bourbon whiskey.  The product is the first legally distilled whiskey to be made in Wyoming.  It's not the first whiskey to be distilled in Wyoming, however, as Kemmerer was a center of illegally distilled whiskey during Prohibition.

Friday, November 29, 2013

November 29

Today is Nellie Tayloe Ross Day

 Ross in 1938 at her Maryland tobacco farm.

Nellie Tayloe Ross Day is a state holiday in Wyoming, although it is little observed. 

1847   Missionaries Dr. Marcus Whitman, his wife Narcissa, and 15 others are killed by Cayuse and Umatilla Indians in what is today southeastern Washington, causing the Cayuse War.  The Whitmans conducted the first Protestant religious service in Wyoming.

1864         Sand Creek Massacre in which Colorado militia attack Black Kettle's Cheyenne band in Colorado.  Black Kettle was at peace, and the attack was unwarranted.  The unit would muster out shortly thereafter.  The attack would drive many Cheyenne north into Wyoming and western Nebraska, where they would link up with Sioux who were already trending towards hostility with the United States.  This would result in ongoing unbroken armed conflict between these tribes and the United States up through the conclusion of Red Cloud's War.

Today the Cheyenne trek north is memorialized in the Sand Creek Massacre Trail, a highway designation for the combination Interstate Highways and State highways that lead to the Wind River Indian Reservation. The Wind River is not a Cheyenne Reservation, but it is an Arapaho and Shoshone reservation, and the Arapahos were allied to the Cheyenne and Sioux in this period. 

Black Kettle had the added misfortune of having his camp attacked later by the 7th Cavalry, under Custer, at Washita, in 1868.  He was killed in that attack, which likewise was a surprise and found his band at peace with the US, although others in the area were not.

 Cheyenne prisoners, in artist's depiction, following Washita.

1873  Laramie County Stockgrowers Association forms in Cheyenne.The organization was one of the precursors of the Wyoming Stock Growers Association.

1876  Nellie Tayloe Ross born in Missouri.

1888  Territorial Governor Moonlight proclaimed the day one of Thanksgiving, Prayer and Praise.

1901  Mildred Harris, movie actress, born in Cheyenne.  She was a significant actress in the silent film era, having gone from being a child actor to a major adult actress, but had difficulty making the transition to talking pictures.

Harris is also evidence that, in spite of my notation of changes in moral standards elsewhere, the lives of movie stars has often been as torrid as they are presently.  Harris married Charlie Chaplin in 1918, at which time she was 17 years old and the couple thought, incorrectly, that  she was pregnant.  She did later give birth during their brief marriage to a boy who was severely disabled, and who died only three days after being born.  The marriage was not a happy one.  They divorced after two years of marriage, and she would marry twice more and was married to former professional football player William P. Fleckenstein at the time of her death, a union that had lasted ten years.  Ironically, she appeared in three films in 1920, the year of her divorce, as Mildred Harris Chaplin, the only films in which she was billed under that name. While an actress probably mostly known to silent film buffs today, she lived in some ways a life that touched upon many remembered personalities of the era, and which was also somewhat stereotypically Hollywood.  She introduced Edward to Wallis Simpson.

She died in 1944 at age 42 of pneumonia following surgery.  She has a star in the Hollywood Walk of Fame.  A significant number of her 134 films are lost or destroyed due to film deterioration.  Her appearances in the last eight years of her life were minor, and unaccredited, showing the decline of her star power in the talking era.

Stories like hers, however, demonstrate that the often held concept of great isolation of Wyomingites was never true.  Harris was one of at least three actors and actresses who were born in Wyoming and who had roles in the early silent screen era.  Of those, she was arguably the most famous having risen to the height of being a major actress by age 16.

1908   Major Harry Coupland Benson appointed acting Superintendent of Yellowstone National Park.

1916:   The Wyoming Tribune for November 29, 1916: Villa in the headlines

Scary headlines in the Tribune, which reported that Juarez, on the Mexican border, might be Villa's next target.
The Cheyenne State Leader for November 29, 1916: Chihuahua in Villa's hands = Carranza agreeing to Protocol?

The Leader made the curious assumption that Villa taking Chihuahua would cause Carranza to agree tot he draft protocol with the US that was designed to bring about an American withdrawal.

Now, why would that be the case? Carranza had been opposed to American intervention, but as it was, the American expeditionary force amounted to a large block of troops in Villas way if he really intended to move north.

A curious assumption.

And the US acting on behalf of besieged Belgium was also in the news.
1919  A four week coal strike causes as serious coal shortage in Cokeville, Wyoming. Attribution, Wyoming Historical Society.  Attribution:  Wyoming State Historical Society.

1931  An Oregon Trail marker was dedicated at Torrington. The decade of the 1930s saw an increased interest in Wyoming in marking the state's early history which was coincident with the pioneer generation passing away.

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Today In Wyoming's History: Blog Mirror: Lex Anteinternet: Thanksgiving

Today In Wyoming's History: Blog Mirror: Lex Anteinternet: Thanksgiving: Lex Anteinternet: Thanksgiving : Today, November 22, is the Thanksgiving Holiday for 2012.  Thanksgiving remains one of the two really big h...

November 28

Today is Thanksgiving Day for 2013.

1872  The Diamond Hoax of 1872 exposed by geologist Clarence King, who issued his opinion that a diamond prospect that had been securing prominent national interest had been salted.

Clarence King

Many wealthy and prominent Americans had been fooled by the scheme and had invested funds to purchase what was thought to be a significant diamond strike. The 1872 date of this event shows the significance that geology had in the state's history from the very onset of the state's history.

1890  The McKinney Strip contest settled in favor of Buffalo.  This was a land contest of some sort, but I can't remember the details.  Attribution:  Wyoming State Historical Society.

1912  Governor Carey declared the day to a day of Public Thanksgiving and Praise to Our Lord.

1914  New Your Stock Exchange reopens for the first time since July, when the crises leading up to World War One caused its closer.

1916:  The Cheyenne State Leader for November 28, 1916: Villa captures Chihuahua and moves north.

Villa was appearing quite resurgent, grim news for those hoping for a resolution to the border situation.

And a sugar plant was going in at Worland. . . where one still exists.  Elsewhere, the State Engineer was arguing for aid to settlers in an early economic development effort.

And the state's water contest against Colorado was making daily news.
1916  William F. Cody granted a patent for a design for a bit.

1917  Cornerstone laid for the Platte County Library.

1924  An earthquake occurred near Lander.

1927  William R. Coe made a substantial donation to the Buffalo Bill Museum in Cody.  Attribution:  Wyoming State Historical Society.

1942  Coffee rationing goes into effect in the United States.

1954  Edward D. Crippa completed his term as appointed Senator from Wyoming, filling out the balance of Lester C. Hunt's term until an elected replacement could be seated.

1960  Hugo Gerhard Janssen, early Wyoming photographer, died in Lovell Wyoming.

1989  The Newport News Shipbuilding and Dry Dock Company in Newport News wins the contract to build the SSN 773, USS Cheyenne.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

November 27

1868  Battle of Washita, Oklahoma occurs.  7th Cavalry under George Custer attacks Cheyenne camp of Chief Black Kettle.  The Cheyenne band attacked was not at war with the US, and Black Kettle, who was killed in the battle, had been the same unfortunate leader who had been attacked at Sand Creek some years earlier, when his band was likewise not at war with the United States.

1869  Suffrage bill introduced in, and passed in, the Territorial Senate.

1903  Casper's oldest bank declared bankrupt.  This was prior, of course, to the FDIC and the FSLIC, so the economic impact of a bank becoming insolvent could be truly devastating to those with accounts in the bank.  Attribution, Wyoming History Calendar.

1916 Laramie Daily Boomerang for November 27, 1916: ROTC established at the University of Wyoming

ROTC comes to UW, and the big water case advances.

1924  A schoolhouse was dedicated in Salt Creek.  Salt Creek was, and remains, one of Natrona County's earliest oilfields.

1941     Joint Army-Navy signal to Hawaii states, "This dispatch is to be considered a war warning.  Negotiations with Japan looking toward stabilization of conditions in the Pacific have ceased and an aggressive move by Japan is expected within the next few days. The number and equipment of Japanese troops and the organization of naval task forces indicates an amphibious expedition against either the Philippines, Thai or Kra Peninsula or possibly Borneo. Execute an appropriate defensive deployment preparatory to carrying out the tasks assigned in WPL46. Inform District and Army authorities. A similar warning is being sent by War Department. Spenavo inform British. Continental districts, Guam, Samoa directed take appropriate measures against sabotage".

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

November 26

1835  Texas forces defeated Mexican forces in the Grass Fight near San Antonio.

1863   President Abraham Lincoln proclaims November 26th as a national Thanksgiving Day, to be celebrated annually on the final Thursday of November (since 1941, on the fourth Thursday).

1916   The Cheyenne Leader for November 26, 1916 (but with a date error): U.S. Ready to Ratify Protocol With Mexico

We need to note here that the Leader made an error on its date on page 1.  To show that, we've uploaded page 2 as well.  This was the November 26 paper, note the November 25 paper.
Woodrow Wilson, the Leader reported, was ready to ratify the protocol with Mexico. But was Carranza ready?  The battle appeared to be turning for Carranza's enemy, Villa, in Chihuahua.
In Washington, John E. Osborne, former Wyoming Governor, appeared to be pondering leaving his Assistant Secretary of State position in the Wilson administration in order to head back to Wyoming. 
And sad news was reported regarding the death if Inez Milholland Bossevain, who had been in Cheyenne during the Presidential campaign.
And the Governor put out a Thanksgiving message for the upcoming holiday. 

1919  USS Laramie, a fleet replenishment oiler,  launched.

1926  Utah's John M. Browning died.  Browning is regarded as the most successful firearms designer of all time.

1934  Charles E. Richardson, publisher of the Rock Springs Daily Rocket-Miner from 1974 to 2005 born in Newcastle Wyoming.

1942  Lusk announces they will forgo outdoor Christmas lights in accordance with a request from the War Production Board.  Attribution.  Wyoming History Calendar.

1948  Former Governor Frank E. Lucas died in  Buffalo, Wyoming.  He had been Wyoming's Secretary of State from 1923 to 1927, and Governor in 1925 after the death of Governor Ross.  He left office in 1927 and spent the rest of his life as the editor and publisher of the Buffalo Bulletin.

1984  Big Nose George Parrott's remains given to the Carbon County Museum.  Attribution:  Wyoming State Historical Society.

2004  The Snake River Ranch added to the National Registry of Historic Places. 

Monday, November 25, 2013

November 25

1867  Fifty three cans of cranberries reported stored at Fort Bridger.  Attribution, Wyoming State Historical Association calendar.

1876.  The Dull Knife Battle.  Col. Ranald S. Mackenzie, 4th U.S. Cavalry, in command of Company K, 2nd U.S. Cavalry, Company H and K, 3rd U.S. Cavalry, Company B, D, E, F, I, and M, 4th U.S. Cavalry, Company H and L, 5th U.S. Cavalry and accompanied by a large contingent of Pawnees, together Arapaho and even Lakota scouts, surprises the Big Horn mountain camp of Cheyennes under Dull Knife.  Sometimes regarded as a somewhat unwarranted attack, Dull Knife's band had been at war with the US during the proceeding summer, and they had recently attacked and defeated a band of Shoshone.  Mackenzie's attack did not succeed in taking the camp whole, but it did succeed in eventually driving the Cheyenne out of it, who lost a great number of villagers in the frozen retreat thereafter.  A large number of the ultimate dead were the old and very young.  The attack is remarkable for having occurred in horrific climatic conditions..  That is, below 0 weather, snow, and high winds.  

Mackenzie is a figure who tends to be much less remembered, in the popular imagination, than other Indian War Army commanders, but he was actually one of the most effective, and consistently so.  He was the son of a career U.S. Navy officer who had risen to the rank of Commodore and his family was very well connected in the military and in politics.  Ranald Mackenzie graduated from West Point in 1862 and immediately entered into an Army career with, of course, the Civil War raging at that time.  During the war he rose to the rank of Brigadier General.  He was briefly mustered out of the service at the end of the Civil War but brought back in during Reconstruction as a Major General.  He thereafter reverted to his permanent rank of Captain.  During the Indian Wars he demonstrated tactical and field command brilliance, commanding both infantry and cavalry, as well as black and white troops.  During this period he rose back up the rank of Brigadier General.

Unfortunately, he began to decline mentally by the 1870s which was manifesting itself as early as the campaign which featured the Dull Knife battle. A poor horseman, he took to the field in terrible conditions with his troops, but in camp he was already demonstrating signs of mental instability and severe depression.  He was ultimately discharged for insanity in 1884, just three years after he had purchased a ranch in Texas and had become engaged.  He died in 1889 at just 48 years of age.  The source of his mental decline is not really known, and remains somewhat debated today, with a possible head injury being one of the suspected causes.

Ranald S. Mackenzie.

The following Congressional Medal of Honor would be awarded for action at The Dull Knife fight:

FORSYTH, THOMAS H:   First Sergeant, Company M, 4th U.S. Cavalry. Place and date: At Powder River, Wyo., 25 November 1876.  Citation: Though dangerously wounded, he maintained his ground with a small party against a largely superior force after his commanding officer had been shot down during a sudden attack and rescued that officer and a comrade from the enemy.

Forsyth was an unusual enlisted man in that he was from a wealthy family and was somewhat a man of means, an unusual circumstance for an enlisted man, let alone a career enlisted man.  He left the service in 1891, the same year he finally received his Congressional Medal of Honor, at which time he had served in the Army for 25 years.  The retirement period for an Army pension at this time was 30 years, go he left earlier than the norm for a full retirement, and I suspect that it may have been a medical retirement, which would also have resulted in a pension.  He held the rank of First Sergeant at the time.  He died in 1908 at age 65.

1889  Scarlet fever caused the public school in Rawlins to be closed.  Courtesy of the Wyoming History Calendar.

1909  Governor B. B. Brooks declared the day to be one of Thanksgiving and Praise.

1916   The Wyoming Tribune for November 25, 1916: Accord reached with Mexico?

An accord was signed with Mexico. . . but that might not quite mean what it seems. . . .
The Cheyenne Leader for November 25, 1916: Peace breaking out with Mexico?

Big news indeed.  The joint commission with Mexico had reached an agreement which should soon see U.S. troops withdrawn from Mexico.

But, before we assume too much, look for the followup post on this topic.
Inez Milholland Boissevain, Suffragist, lawyer, dies on this day in 1916
Inez Milholland Boissevain, a truly remarkable personality, died on this day in 1916.  She had campaigned in Cheyenne during the election only shortly before.

Milholland was thirty years old at the time of her death.  She was born into a wealthy family in which her father had been involved in many progressive causes of the era.  She graduated from Vassar in 1909 with the intent to pursue a career in law, which she did do. Receiving rejections from many of the schools she applied to, she graduated from New York University School of Law in 1912.  She was admitted to the bar in 1912 and went to work for Osborne, Lamb, and Garvan where she handled criminal and divorce cases.

She was involved in many of the causes of the era, including obtaining the vote for women and the cause of African Americans.  A pacifist, she traveled to Italy early in World War One to report on the war but was not allowed to travel to the front.

She married Eugen Jan Boissevain in 1913, after knowing him for only a month. The marriage cost her citizenship as Boissevain was Dutch and the law at the time attributed a woman's citizenship to her spouse.  She nonetheless campaigned for the right of women to vote in the United States. She fell ill on a speaking tour in 1916 and died on this day of pernicious anemia.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

November 24

1835.  Texas authorizes the Texas Rangers.

1874.  Joseph F. Glidden received his patent for barbed wire.

Barbed wire changed the nature of ranching and farming in the West.  More than any other single physical item, barbed wire was responsible for the end of the open range and permanently established ranches with fenced pastures.  It even changed the nature of the cowboy's work and employment, as it caused the rise of multiple smaller ranches with a small number of year around employees who worked cattle more and rode less.

1890  Francis E. Warren resigns as Governor, a position he had held as State Governor for only a little over a month, but which as Territorial Governor he had held for about a year.  None the less, he holds the status of being Wyoming's first Governor.  He resigned in order to take up his duties as a newly elected Senator, which oddly he had assumed a few days prior to his resignation as Governor.

Warren in life.  He was in his late 40s when he became Senator.

1890  Amos W. Barber assumes office as Governor at age 29.  Barber had not been elected Governor, but assumed the acting position when Francis E. Warren resigned to assume the office of Senator.  Barber, who was a surgeon by training, and who come to Wyoming while serving in the Army, would find his term in office plagued by the Johnson County War, during which he was associated with the large stockmen side of the conflict.  He is not regarded as a strong Governor, and probably did not miss the office when he vacated it in 1893.  He returned first to the position of Secretary of State and then to private medical practice, and reentered military service during the Spanish American War.  He later moved to Minnesota, but he was buried in Cheyenne after his death in Minnesota in 1915.

Barber's time in office was marred by the Johnson County War, and his role in it suggests a potential weakness in his character.  On a more positive note, he detected the shenanigans that had occurred with the design of the state's seal, and would not tolerate that, although even there he kept his first corrective efforts a secret after the story became controversial.

Governor Barber's mustache belied his age, he was only 29 years old when he became the State's second governor.

1916   The Cheyennne Leader for November 24, 1916: Villa defated at Chihuahua, Carranza delegates to confer with Carranza

A lot going on in this November 24 edition of the Tribune.  But how much was accurate?

Things going badly for Villa?  A near agreement with Carranza?  And of course, the Great War.

1921  A serious fire in Gillette, WY destroyed several of the towns landmark buildings.

1929  Senator Francis E. Warren died.  At the time of his death, he had been a Senator longer than any other person in U.S. history.  He was also the last Union veteran to serve in the U.S. Senate, a distinction in his case which was amplified by the fact that he was a recipient of the Congressional Medal of Honor, which perhaps explains his strong support of the Army while a Senator (which might also be explained by the fact that he was John J. Pershing's father in law).  He was also the first Senator to hire a female secretary.  His service was not without some blemishes, as a close association with the large stockmen side of the Johnson County War had given rise to questions about the extent of his association at that time, questions which nearly cost him his political career but which quickly passed.

1968  Expedition Island in the Green River was designated as a National Historic Landmark. The island is a park in Green River, WY and marks the location where Major John Wesley Powell began his expedition down the Green River and Colorado River in 1871.

1990  In one of Wyoming's most infamous murder cases, 15 year old James "Jamie" Wiley shot and killed his stepmother Becky, brothers, Jesse (age 13), Willy (age 10), and Tyrone (age 5) and then set the house on fire.

2000   A magnitude 4.6 earthquake occurred about 82 miles from Cody, WY.

2011 Today is Thanksgiving Day for 2011.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

November 23

1888 The Casper Weekly Mail newspaper established.

1903  Colorado Gov. Peabody calls up the Colorado National Guard and sends them to Cripple Creek on strike breaking duty, one of the duties most detested by the National Guard of this era.

1914  The last of U.S. forces withdraw from Veracruz, occupied seven months earlier in response to the Tampico Affair.  The crisis in Mexico would continue, and spill over the border early the following year, an event which would cause the Federalization of the National Guard, including Wyoming's.

1921  An earthquake shook Sheridan County.  Attribution: Wyoming State Historical Society.

1925   The USS Wyoming commences an overhaul at the New York Navy Yard.

1934  Moderate earthquake felt in Lander, Atlantic City, Riverton and Rock Springs.

1936  Work began on Wheatland Reservoir #1.  Dam construction was a popular Depression Era activity across the Western United States not only because of the work it provided, and the benefit to agriculture, but because of a belief that projects of this type would help directly beneficially impact the climate.

1939  President Franklin Roosevelt carved the turkey at Warm Springs in the first of several Thanksgivings that were celebrated on two separate dates, this date being a week earlier than the traditional date. It had been moved up to increase the shopping time between Thanksgiving and Christmas in the hopes of boosting sales during the Depression.  The move was unpopular and Congress restored the traditional date in 1941.

1945     World War Two meat and butter rationing ends in US.

1947   The southwestern portion of Montana was struck by a magnitude 6 1/4 earthquake whcih was also felt in northwestern Wyoming.

2000 Buffalo records its coldest Thanksgiving Day Temperature, 12F.  It's been colder than that this year (2011), so perhaps we'll break the record.

Friday, November 22, 2013

November 22

1542  New laws passed in Spain giving protection against the enslavement of Indians in America.

1813  One of the two dates of death given for John Colter.  Colter was a member of the Corps of Discovery.  Following his early discharge in 1806 in North Dakota, before the expedition had fully returned, he joined a party of trappers as a guide and famously was the first American to describe thermal activity in the Yellowstone country.  He fought in Nathan Boone's Rangers in the War of 1812, and spent the final years of his life as a farmer in Missouri.

1858  Denver, Colorado is founded as Denver City.  It was named for Kansas Territorial Governor James W. Denver and was in the Territory of Kansas at the time.

1877  Governor Thayer approved a memorandum to Congress protesting against a proposed division of the Wyoming Territory.

As evident from the various discussions of territorial boundaries found on this site, the boundaries and governmental entities applicable to what is now the State of Wyoming were remarkably fluid up until at least the 1870s.

1889  A fire damaged the state Capitol.  Attribution: Wyoming State Historical Society.

1892  Burlington Northern rails reach Sheridan.

1963  President John F. Kennedy assassinated in Dallas, TX.

1982  President Reagan informed Congress of his intent to deploy MX missles to hardened silos under the command of F. E. Warren AFB.

2010  Gov. Matt Mead announced that Greg Phillips would take over as Wyoming's Attorney General under his administration.

2012  Today was Thanksgiving Day for 2012.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

November 21

1842  Alfred Packer, Colorado cannibal, born in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania. 

1860  Tom Horn born in Scotland County Missouri.

1865  Platte Bridge Station renamed Ft. Caspar in honor of the late Caspar Collins, who had lost his life at the Battle of Platte Bridge Station earlier that year.

1877     Inventor Thomas A. Edison unveiled the phonograph.

1887  The Wyoming Central Railway opened its line between Douglas and Glenrock, thereby extending its rail service to the state line.

1895  The Federal District Court, sitting in Cheyenne, held that the Treaty of 1868 exempted Indians from the State's game laws.  The decision would later be reversed.

1910  August Malchow defeated by Peter Jensen of Omaha, the "Battling Dane", in a fight at the Kirby Opera House in Sheridan.  See September 25 for more on Malchow.

1913  Nathaniel Burt, author, born in Moose.

1940  Ernest Hemingway and Martha Gellhorn were married in Cheyenne.  The wedding took place at the Union Pacific Depot dining room.  Attribution:  Wyoming State Historical Society.

1943  Goshen Vounty's harvest declared a success due to the efforts of immigrant Mexican laborers and Prisoners of War.  Attribution.  Wyoming Historical Society's history calendar.

1950  A DC3 (C-47) airplane crashed into Mount Moran, killing all 21 persons on board.  The plane was flying in poor weather.

1957  The Department of Defense announced that F.E. Warren AFB would be the nation's first ICBM base.

1975  Dick Cheney assumes the position of White House Chief of Staff under Gerald Ford.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

November 20

1837  Republic of Texas Secretary of State Robert A. Irion recommended that Texas grant copyrights.Attribution:  On This Day.

1866     First national convention of the Grand Army of the Republic.  The GAR would be represented by local chapters throughout the US, including Wyoming, leaving memorials in at least Casper and Basin, Wyoming.

1869  First issue of the Wyoming Tribune published in Cheyenne.

1886  Thomas Moonlight appointed Territorial Governor of Wyoming.


1903  Tom Horn hanged for the murder of Willie Nickell.  He was actually hung with the rope he made, like the popular proverb, as he braided the rope while serving time waiting for his execution.

1920  An emergency landing strip was bladed near Laramie. This was not, however, Brees Field. Attribution:  Wyoming State Historical Society.

1945  Mindful of an industry that had become significant in the state even well before World War One, Gov. Lester Hunt urged western governors to cooperate in selling the West to tourists who would follow the end of World War Two.  Attribution. Wyoming History Calendar.


1868  Ft. Omaha founded in Nebraska.

1871  John and David McDougall become the first farmers in Alberta.

1910  Francico Madero declares a revolution in Mexico.  Madero's revolution was a success in that Diaz fled the country in 1911. He died in France in 1915, but Madero died well before him, as he was assassinated by those loyal to Gen. Huerta, who had no sympathy with Madero's views.


Diaz's long life was one that featured many interesting turns. He joined the Mexican army in the first instance in order to fight against the United States in the Mexican War. He lead guerrillas against Santa Ana upon his return to Mexico. He fought the French with Juarez but was an opponent, sometimes a revolutionary, against Juarez thereafter. He came to rule Mexico in 1877 by popular election, and ironically stepped down after one term having run on that platform. He ran again in 1884 and remained in power until the revolution. While he ultimately was toppled in a revolution, his authoritarian rule of Mexico was the first real period of peace in Mexico since the revolution against Spain, and the country generally prospered. Had he stepped down, as he had indicated he was willing to do, he would be well remembered today.


Heurta would die in El Paso Texas, in exile, in 1916, where he was under house arrest after having been detected negotiating with the Germans for arms in violation of the Neutrality Act.


Of note here, the involvement in the US in the Mexican Revolution proved to be almost inevitable. The border region was chosen by participants in both sides as a place of refuge, to include both the humble and the conspiratory. Madero, Villa, and Huerta all chose the US as a place of refuge, and a place to base themselves in the hope to return to Mexico and achieve power. Tensions on the US border started with the revolution being declared in 1910, and as early as the first day of the revolution Mexican authorities were assuring the US not to have worries. Tensions would last long after World War One, and the cross border action that started before the war would continue on briefly after the war.

The Wyoming National Guard, like that of every other state, would see border service in this period, first being mustered to serve on the border in 1915.  National Guard service involved nearly constant active duty from March 1915 through World War One.

1917   The Battle of Cambrai opens, and Villa back on the front page. November 20, 1917.

As Wyomingites were headed towards Thanksgiving this week, they learned that the giant surprise British attack at Cabrai had been launched. The battle would feature British tanks in a major way.

And Pancho Villa was back in the headlines for the success of his old occupation, as he battled Carranza near the US border.

1920 Nobel Peace Prize awarded to Woodrow Wilson.

1942 NHL abolishes regular season overtime until World War II is over.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

November 19

Today is recognized as World Men's Day in many nations.

1868  The Bear River City Riot occurred in which  parties supporting a lynched murder suspect and those supporting the lynching rioted.  The town Marshall bravely stood his ground against both sides, but there was serious destruction in the town and sixteen people died. Cavalry was dispatched from Ft. Bridger to restore order.

1909  George Sabin sentenced for Second Degree Murder for his part in the Spring Creek Raid.  He escaped on December 25,1913, while on a work gang in  Basin, and was never recaptured.

The sentencing is remarkable and significance as it effectively meant an end to private warfare over sheep in Wyoming, and it also meant that conventional justice had come to the Big Horn Basin, where previously juries would not convict in these circumstances.  This reflected in part the horror of the  Spring Creek assault, but also the fact that the Basin was now closer to the rest of the state, having been connected some time prior by rail.

1917   The Laramie Boomerang, November 19, 1917. Manufacture of Pleasure Cars To Be Stopped

Oh oh, resource demands were cutting into automobile production. Better get down to the car lot now!
The Spiker (soldier newspaper). November 19, 1917.

1980  Heaven's Gate, a widely panned at the time, highly expensive, cinematic interpretation of the Johnson  County War premiered.  The film has since gained some respect (I've never seen it) but it was not the success hoped for by its makers.

 Almost every popular work based upon the Johnson County War is a serious failure in some regards, with almost all of them being simplistic in some fashion and failing nearly completely to understand the complexities of what they try to depict.  While I have not seen this film, and have no real interest in doing so, I would be very surprised if it was much different.

1986  Zane Dean Beadles of the Denver Broncos born in Casper.
2009   The Coe East wing at Wyoming University was officially dedicated.

Monday, November 18, 2013

November 18

1832  William Hale born in New London Iowa.  He would serve as Territorial Governor from July 1882 until his death in 1885.

1869  Governor John A. Campbell proclaimed the day "a day of Thanksgiving and Praise."

1883  John (Manual Felipe) Phillips (Cardoso) died in Cheyenne Wyoming.  He is famously remembered as the civilian who rode 236 miles from Ft. Phil Kearny to Ft. Laramie following the Fetterman Fight.  Phillips is an interesting character and was born in the Azores in 1832, which he left at age 18 on a whaler bound for California in order to pan for gold.  He was a gold prospector across the West for 15 year.  He was actually at Ft. Phil Kearny as a party of miners he was left had pulled into the fort in September of 1866.His famous ride is somewhat inaccurately remembered, as he did not make the entire ride alone, as often imagined, but instead rode with Daniel Dixon.  Both men were paid $300.00 for their effort.  After this event Phillips switched occupations to that of mail courier, and then he became a tie hack in Elk Mountain Wyoming, supplying rails to the Union Pacific.  In 1870 he married and founded a ranch at Chugwater, Wyoming.  He and his wife sold the ranch in 1878, and he moved to Cheyenne where he lived until his death.

1883     The United States and Canada adopted a system of standard time zones.

1886 Chester A. Arthur, the 21st president of the United States, died in New York at age 56.

1889  The first train to arrive in Newcastle arrives.  Attribution: Wyoming State Historical Society.

1890  Francis E. Warren assumes the office of U.S. Senator from Wyoming.  He was Wyoming's first Senator.

1902   Frederick Remington drew pictures of dedication of Irma Hotel, Cody.  Courtesy of Wyoming State Archives via the Wyoming State Historical Society's calendar.

 1943  The Wyoming Department of Education released the results of a survey revealing that the state was short 70 teachers, no doubt the result of teachers having joined the armed forces during World War Two.  Attribution. Wyoming History Calendar.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Lex Anteinternet: UW's President Sternberg Resigns

Lex Anteinternet: UW's President Sternberg Resigns: After a couple of weeks with seemingly endless headlines regarding the growing controversy over changes at the University of Wyoming , Presi...

Lex Anteinternet: The Golden Era of Classic Hotels: Parco

Lex Anteinternet: The Golden Era of Classic Hotels: Parco: The Parco Hotel. If you try to book a room in the Parco Hotel today, you won't be able to.  Indeed, you won't even be able to ...

November 17

1835  The people of Cincinnati, Ohio raised funds for two cannons for Texas that became known as the "twin sisters."  Attribution:  On This Day.

1880  Rain In The Face surrendered with 500 followers at Ft. Keogh.

1906  Eleven people were killed in a head on train collision near Azusa, Wyoming.  The collision was caused by a mistake in a train order in a telegraph, and most of the men killed were railroad employees in a day coach.

1910  First annual conference of Wyoming clergy held. Attribution:  Wyoming State Historical Society.

1925  An earthquake occurred at Big Horn with the tremor felt in Johnson and Sheridan Counties.  Attribution:  On This Day.

1980  Christ Episcopal Church in Douglas added to the National Register of Historic Places.


1968     NBC outraged football fans by cutting away from the final minutes of a game to air a TV special, "Heidi," on schedule.

1970   Douglas Engelbart receives the patent for the first computer mouse.

2008     The vampire romance movie "Twilight" premiered in Los Angeles, an event destined in future years to be ranked with the Vandals sacking Rome as a really bad day for Western Civilization.

2012  From the Governor's office:
CHEYENNE, Wyo. -- Governor Matt Mead released the following statement regarding the refugee issue:

"No state should have to endure the threat of terrorists entering our borders," Governor Mead said. "The President needs to make certain an absolutely thorough vetting system is in place that will not allow terrorists from Syria or any other part of the world into our country. In light of the horrific terrorist attacks in Paris, I have joined other governors in demanding the refugee process be halted until it is guaranteed to provide the security demanded by Wyoming and United States citizens. I have written the President (letter attached) to make it known Wyoming will not accept a lackluster system that allows terrorists to slip through the cracks."

Governor Mead and other governors have a conference call with the President this afternoon.
I don't usually editorialize in these comments (although I do occasionally), but it's hard not to see this as a political reaction.  Given the lack of infrastructure for it, it is doubtful at best that any Syrian refugees would have been resettled in Wyoming.  A person can debate whether any terrorist  might enter the US in this fashion, but a person is also bound to consider the added humanitarian crisis that failing to address this situation will cause, and the added likelihood of that potentially inspiring violence in the future.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

November 16

534   A second and final revision of the Codex Justinianus is published.   Compiling Roman law proved to be a difficult chore due to the many different versions of it in regards to any one particular topic.  While Roman law provides comparatively little basis for modern American law, outside of Louisiana, it was not wholly without influence to some degree.  The codification of the Roman law in Roman times provided the basis, later for the codification of French law under Napoleon.

1887  Legendary photographer of Wyoming, Charles Belden, born in California.
1878  The Commissary at Fort Fetterman listed the supplies on hand as being: 195 lbs. of turkey, 140 of codfish, and 11 lbs. of cherries. Date: Attribution:  Wyoming Historical Calendar.
1917   November 16, 1917: All the Distressing News. US Back in Mexico, in Combat in Europe, flag shaming in Lander, and Temptation in Philadelphia

The Laramie Boomerang correctly noted that the United States had crossed back into Mexico, but just right across the border.  This was something that the US would end up doing in a worried fashion for years, showing that while the Punitive Expedition might be over, armed intervention, to a degree, in Mexico, was not.

At the same time, the press was really overemphasizing US combat action in Europe. The US wouldn't really be fighting much for weeks and weeks.

And the on again, off again, hope that the Japanese would commit to ground action was back on again.

Meanwhile, in Lander, things were getting really ugly.  "German sympathizers" were being made to kiss the flag.

That probably didn't boost their loyalty any.

Villas expanding plans were also being noted. And, also, The Temptation Rag, a film, was being reported on, on the front page, something that takes a true scandal to occur now.
1942   Wyoming Senator Harry H. Schwartz introduced bill to protect Western stockmen from wartime eminent domain losses. 
1945  USS Laramie decommissioned. 

1973     President Richard M. Nixon signed the Alaska Pipeline measure into law.
1982  The Jahnke murder occurred in Cheyenne, in which Richard Janke Jr., aided by his sister, killed his abusive father. The murder was later the basis of a television movie entitled Right to Kill.
1993  A magnitude 3.5 earthquake occurred about 65 miles from Sheridan. 
2002  Tom Farris, who had been born in Casper Wyoming, and who had played football for three years in the National Football League following World War Two, died.
2015  In keeping with a request from President Obama, Governor Mead ordered flags in the state to fly at half mast until sundown, November 19, in honor of the dead of the recent terrorist attack in Paris.

Friday, November 15, 2013

November 15

1835  Troops under George Fisher and José Antonio Mexía attacked the Mexican garrison at Tampico.  The assault was not a success.  Attribution:  On This Day.

1907 J. P. Hehn stepped down as Warden of the State Penitentiary and Fred Hillenbrand became the warden.

1912  The Bishop Randall Hospital was officially opened in Lander, Wyoming.

1916:   The Cheyenne Leader for November 15, 1916: Mexicans repudiate pact for joint border control, train robbed in Missouri, trouble in a synagogue.

Some interesting news for November 15, 1916.

An attempt at a pact on the Mexican border appeared to fall through, to the frustration of the U.S. delegates.

A train was robbed in Kansas City, Missouri. The paper referenced Bill Carlisle, the famous Wyoming train robber who is usually credited with the last train robbery in the US.  This story would obviously cast doubt on that claim.

In Cheyenne there was dissension on the rabbi that had been serving there.

1917   November 15, 2017. Siberian rumors and Border battles.

Residents of Cheyenne were reading today about a rumored, and totally false, revival of the fortunes of Czar Nicolas II.  The Czar, they read, was crowned Czar. . . again. . . . in Siberia.

Not so much.

Russia was descending into complete chaos however. That was real enough.

And so was Villa's revival right on the border with Texas.  His troops had in fact taken Ojinaga.

Having gone from desperate in March 2015, to pursued the rest of 2015 and 2016, he was back in top form and contesting for control of northern Mexico, to American consternation and concern, once again.  And now while we had a major war on our hands.

1921  A truck used by John J. Pershing in the Great War was donated to the Wyoming State Museum.

1926     The National Broadcasting Co. debuted nationwide with a radio network of 24 stations.

1937   The first US Congressional session in air-conditioned chambers took place.

1940     The first 75,000 men were called to armed forces duty under peacetime conscription. This wast the first time in U.S. history in which there had been a peacetime draft, excluding annual militia musters.

1943  Harmonica player Larry Adler played at the University of Wyoming.  Adler was a well known harmonica player.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Novmeber 14

1890  Joseph M. Carey elected as the first U.S. Senator for Wyoming. F. E. Warren elected to a second senator for Wyoming.  At this time, the Legislator appointed the Senators, rather than the electorate electing them.

Carey was an 1864 graduate of the University of Pennsylvania College of Law, and became U.S. Attorney for the Territory of Wyoming in 1869.  He was on the Territorial Supreme Court from 1871 to 1876, when he left that field to become a rancher, founding a significant early ranch in Natrona County Wyoming, the CY.   He served as governor from 1890 to 1895, being Wyoming's first state governor, and then again from 1911 to 1915, during which time he supported the Progressive Party campaign for President of Theodore Roosevelt.
Gov. Carey in his second term at the launching of the USS Wyoming.

1897  An earthquake damaged the Grand Central Hotel in Casper.

1917   Back in the headlines. The Wyoming Tribune for November 14, 1917

Pancho Villa's forces were back in the headlines. . . with combat right on the US border.

A battle significant enough that it was not only pushing the Carranzaistas out of a disputed town. . . it pushed World War One and the Russian Revolution aside a bit as well.

Not that both didn't also show up.  Include a hopeful headline that the Bolsheviks were going down in defeat.
1921  World Champion wrestler Jack Taylor of Wyoming lost the title in Boise to a Russian wrestler.  Attribution:  Wyoming State Historical Society.

1935  The Crook County News reported Montana man killed by flying sheep, according to the Wyoming Historical Society's daily Wyoming post and calendar.  Necessarily, this article requires some explanation, as sheep don't regularly fly.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

November 13

1806  Pike's Peak Colorado observed by Lieutenant Zebulon Montgomery Pike during an expedition to locate the source of the Mississippi.

1835  Texas officially proclaimed Independence from Mexico, and called itself the Lone Star Republic.  The very south east most slice of the state was within the Mexican province of Mexico, and therefore within the newly proclaimed republic, although it was not inhabited by European Americans or Mexicans at the time.  Borders in northern Mexico were more than a little theoretical.

1854  The Horse Creek Skirmish when the Sioux attacked a mail stage near the present location of Torrington.

1867  The first passenger train, a Union Pacific train, arrived in Cheyenne, WY.

1890  Fire damaged a saloon in Rawlins, Wyoming (Courtesy the Wyoming Historical Society).

1895  Floyd Taliaferro  Alderson born in Sheridon.  Alderson grew up on a ranch near Sheridan and served in World War One before becoming an actor in the silent movie era.  He acted in 22 silent films and was able to transition into talking pictures. He retired from acting in the 1950s and returned to the family ranch where he painted in his retirement. During his acting years he acted under a variety of names, including most notably Wally Wales,but also as Hal Taliaferro and Floyd Taliaferro.

1901 First CB&Q passenger train arrives in Cody, Wyoming.

1916:   The Laramie Republican for Monday, November 13, 1916. Record Cold.

The weather a century ago definitely isn't what we're experiencing this year.


The USS Wyoming becomes  Rear Admiral Hugh Rodman's, Commander Battleship Division 9, flagship. Attribution:  On This Day.

1933   "(MONDAY)  UNITED STATES: The first dust storm of the great dust bowl era of the 1930s occurs. The dust storm, which has spread from Montana to the Ohio Valley yesterday, prevails from Georgia to Maine resulting in a black rain over New York and a brown snow in Vermont. Parts of South Dakota, Minnesota and Iowa reported zero visibility yesterday. Today, dust reduces the visibility to half a mile (805 meters) in Tennessee. (Jack McKillop)"  Attribution:  The WWII History List.

Dust storm in Colorado, 1935.

1941  The United States Congress amends the Neutrality Act of 1935 to allow American merchant ships access to war zones.

1942     The minimum draft age was lowered from 21 to 18.

1943  The state penitentiary receives a contract for 8,000 U.S. Army blankets.  Attribution:  Wyoming State Historical Society.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

November 12

1867  Peace conference commences at Ft. Laramie, Wyoming.  The goal was to arrive at a peaceful solution to strife between Americans and the northern Plains Indians.

1889  First municipal election in Newcastle. Attribution:  Wyoming State Historical Society.

1890  First Wyoming State Legislature convened.

1890  The United States government funded a land grant college for Wyoming, which would become the University of Wyoming.  Attribution:  Wyoming State Historical Society.

1897  Milward Lee Simpson was born in Jackson.  He grew up in Meeteetse and Cody, served as an infantry lieutenant in World War One, and graduated from Harvard Law School in 1925.   He served as the 23rd Governor of Wyoming from 1955 to 1959, having been narrowly elected in 1954 and having been defeated for reelection in 1958.  He served as U.S. Senator from Wyoming from 1964 to 1967, filling the term of the late Edwin Keith Thomson who died in office.  Simpson was one of only six Republican U.S. Senators to vote against the Civil Rights Act of 1964.  One of his sons is long serving U.S. Senator Alan Simpson.

1916:   Sunday State Leader for November 12, 1916: Guard to remain Federalized, Villa avoids encounter with Carranza's troops.

The Laramie Republican for November 12, 1916: Villista outrages at Parral

1981  The Wyoming (Ohio) Historical Society founded.

2012  For this year, Veteran's Day observed in the United States so as to make the day a three day holiday.

In spite of having fought wars in recent years, and in spite of there being an ongoing one currently, this day seems to have reduced in significance in recent years.  It is a Federal Holiday, but not a day that most people have off.  Schools are in session locally.  There are (as is the norm here) no parades.  Even the Star Tribune, which used to feature Veterans and their stories on this day, has only seen fit to run a single photo page commemorating the day.

2015:  Wyoming Congresswoman Cynthia Lummis, in office since January 2009, announced her intent to abstain running for office at the completion of this term.  Two Republicans announced they were interested in running, with one expressing a definite intent to do so, by the end of the day.

Lex Anteinternet: Lex Anteinternet: Dean Easton Resigns

Lex Anteinternet: Lex Anteinternet: Dean Easton Resigns: When the letter noted here; Lex Anteinternet: Dean Easton Resigns : came in yesterday, most of the lawyers I know were pretty surprised. We...

Lex Anteinternet: The Big Picture: 6th U.S. Cavalry at Texas City, ...

Lex Anteinternet: The Big Picture: 6th U.S. Cavalry at Texas City, ...

Lex Anteinternet: In Memoriam

Lex Anteinternet: In Memoriam: In Memoriam by Ewart Alan Mackintosh (who himself was killed in action). (Private D Sutherland killed in action in the German trenches, ...

Lex Anteinternet: The Population of Veterans

Lex Anteinternet: The Population of Veterans: I've seen frequent written commentary in recent years to the effect that our current wars impact us very little, as a society, as so fe...

Monday, November 11, 2013

Veterans Day

Today is Veterans Day, commemorating the day in 1918 when World War One's fighting came to an end.  Originally called Armistice Day, and commemorating only the end of that war, after World War Two the holiday was expanded to honor all veterans of all wars, and veterans in general.

How does that work in your town, and in your place of employment?  Is this just another day?  Does your town honor it with a function of some sort.  Do you have the day off?  Let us know.

November 11. Veterans Day

Today is Veterans Day in the United States.
Today is Remembrance Day in Canada, and similar holidays in many other countries.

Today is also Polish Independence Day, commemorating the restoration of Polish independence on this day in 1918.
Today is also the Memorial of St. Martin of Tours, 316-397, the Patron Saint of Horsemen.

St. Martin, it should be noted, had been a Roman officer, albeit a reluctant one, who took up that position due to the insistence of his family.  He's famously depicted on horseback, giving his cloak to a naked figure he encountered en route.  He left the Roman military to become a priest, and ultimately became a Bishop.

St. Martin's feast day used to be celebrated in Poland in a manner which included baking horseshoe cookies "for his horse".  The recipe:

1 cup butter or margarine
1/2 cup confectioners' (powdered) sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 cups sifted all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup quick-cooking rolled oats, uncooked
Makes three dozen cookies.

Cream butter or margarine; add sugar gradually while continuing to cream; beat until fluffy. Stir in vanilla, flour, and salt. Blend in rolled oats. Roll out about 1/4 inch thick on lightly floured board. Cut in strips 6 inches long and 1/2 inch wide. On ungreased cookie sheets shape strips to resemble horseshoes. Bake at 325° for 20 to 15 minutes or until lightly browned.

1620 Pilgrims execute the Mayflower Compact, one of the founding charters of American democracy.

The original document has not survived, but several early copies have.  There are slight differences in spelling and punctuation, but basically the text reads as follows:
In the name of God, Amen. We, whose names are underwritten, the loyal subjects of our dread Sovereign Lord King James, by the Grace of God, of Great Britain, France, and Ireland, King, defender of the Faith, etc.
Having undertaken, for the Glory of God, and advancements of the Christian faith and honor of our King and Country, a voyage to plant the first colony in the Northern parts of Virginia, do by these presents, solemnly and mutually, in the presence of God, and one another, covenant and combine ourselves together into a civil body politic; for our better ordering, and preservation and furtherance of the ends aforesaid; and by virtue hereof to enact, constitute, and frame, such just and equal laws, ordinances, acts, constitutions, and offices, from time to time, as shall be thought most meet and convenient for the general good of the colony; unto which we promise all due submission and obedience.
In witness whereof we have hereunto subscribed our names at Cape Cod the 11th of November, in the year of the reign of our Sovereign Lord King James, of England, France, and Ireland, the eighteenth, and of Scotland the fifty-fourth, 1620.[

1817  Francisco Xavier Mina and 25 compatriots executed at Fort San Gregorio for insurrection.

1864  The Lincoln Mining District, the first mining district near South Pass, organized. Attribution:  Wyoming State Historical Society.

1865  The U.S. Army renamed Fort Connor to Fort Reno in honor of Major General Jesse L. Reno.

1886  George W. Baxter assumes the office of Territorial Governor.  He resigned on December 20 of the same year.  Given his very brief stint as Territorial Governor, questions would have to be raised as to whether or not he wanted the job, or simply agreed to take it at the request of President Cleveland, who was then in office and who had removed F. E. Warren.

On the same day, Francis E. Warren stepped down as Territorial Governor at the request of President Cleveland.   Questions regarding dealings with a Cheyenne Wyoming businessman caused his resignation, but his reputation would prove intact, and he would resume the position in 1889, and keep it until 1890 when became Wyoming's first elected State Governor.  He went on to become a US Senator from November 1890 until 1893, and then again until his death on November 24, 1929.  He was John J. Pershing's father in law.

1890  The Wyoming Supreme Court meets for the first time.

1918  On this day, Ninety years ago, World War One ended.  The Armistice became effective at 11:00.  Since hostilities had commenced in 1914, 9,000,000 soldiers had died in action, 21,000,000 had been wounded, and many additional soldiers civilians had died due to the direct and indirect consequences of the war, not the least of which was the unleashing of the Spanish Flu in military camp conditions, which would claim more lives than combat had.  The German, Russian and Austro-Hungarian Empires had been destroyed with no real ability for a successful popular democratic ideal to take root in those nations, which fell into turmoil.  Communism and similar movements, previously occupying the fringe of the Socialist left, filled in the vacuum resulting in violent revolution in various localities including Russia and Germany, achieving power in Russia and failing to do so in Germany, which was none the less left in turmoil.  New nations, such as Poland, Finland, Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Czechoslovakia, and Yugoslavia were born, or resumed their positions on the map after having not had them for centuries.  The German Imperial Army, refusing to go down with the Kaiser, had effectively arranged for his surrender of power and fully assumed the status of a power unto itself, with grave consequences for the future.  Japan, ascendant since the late 19th Century, had seized territory in the East as an Allied power.  Ireland had gone into revolution over the issue of conscription, and the UK was left with a guerrilla war in Ireland.  The Ottoman Empire had collapsed and Turkey was born, with the war against Turkey still going on.  The former Ottoman possession in the Middle East were now European territories.  The United States, which had sat on the fence of world power status for decades, briefly assumed that role, and then retreated from it. The Dominions of Canada and Australia had entered the war as confirmed dominions and left it much more independent nations.  In spite of the inconclusive results, to some extent, and the views later  held in later eras, the war was regarded as worthwhile and a victory in the English speaking world at this time.

In Wyoming, World War One had caused a very significant economic boom which very much predated the US entry into the war.  Starting in 1914, British Remount agents scoured the United States for suitable military horses, purchasing thousands, and causing a horse boom in Wyoming which lasted throughout the war, as the US later began to do the same.  Cattle prices also rose as the demand for meat rose due to the war.  Homesteading received its last great boom, which would peak in 1919, the last year that the American farmer achieved economic parity with the urban middle class.

Oil exploration massively accelerated during the wear, causing towns like Casper to boom, and which resulted in Casper's first "sky scraper", the Oil Exchange Building, now the Consolidated Royalty Building.  

The boom would not last, and an economic recession began to set in during 1919.  This is further examined in our companion site, Lex Anteinternet.

The day became a holiday in many countries following World War One, and is recalled today under a variety of names.  It is a Federal holiday in the Unites States, being known as Veterans' Day, having come to honor American veterans of all wars.

Some poetry from the last war to inspire a fair amount of important poetry, but which speaks to all wars.

In Memoriam

by Ewart Alan Mackintosh (who himself was killed in action).

(Private D Sutherland killed in action in the German trenches, 16 May 1916, and the others who died.)

So you were David's father,
And he was your only son,
And the new-cut peats are rotting
And the work is left undone,
Because of an old man weeping,
Just an old man in pain,
For David, his son David,
That will not come again.

Oh, the letters he wrote you,
And I can see them still,
Not a word of the fighting,
But just the sheep on the hill
And how you should get the crops in
Ere the year get stormier,
And the Bosches have got his body,
And I was his officer.

You were only David's father,
But I had fifty sons
When we went up in the evening
Under the arch of the guns,
And we came back at twilight -
O God! I heard them call
To me for help and pity
That could not help at all.

Oh, never will I forget you,
My men that trusted me,
More my sons than your fathers',
For they could only see
The little helpless babies
And the young men in their pride.
They could not see you dying,
And hold you while you died.

Happy and young and gallant,
They saw their first-born go,
But not the strong limbs broken
And the beautiful men brought low,
The piteous writhing bodies,
They screamed 'Don't leave me, sir',
For they were only your fathers
But I was your officer.

And my favorite, In Flanders Fields, by Canadian John McCrae, who died of the Influenza Epidemic during the war, while serving in France.

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie,
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

1921 Warren G. Harding dedicated the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Arlington National Cemetery.

1924  George Carr Frison, Professor Emeritus of Anthropology at the University of Wyoming born in Worland Wyoming.

1926  Plans for U.S. Highway 30, replacing the Lincoln Highway but generally along the same route, finalized.

1930  Clarence Don Clark, Wyoming's U.S. Congressman from 1890 to 1893, and US Senator from Wyoming from 1895 to 1917, died. 

1940  Willys introduces their variant of the Jeep for the Army's competition for a light 4x4 vehicle.  The very unstable dangerous little 4x4 car would enter into civilian production post war as the CJ2, the first really light commercially offered 4x4 truck (and a highly dangerous one).  4x4s would feature prominently in a revolution in accessibility to the Wyoming back-country post World War Two.
1958 M38A1, the military version of the same Jeep that was known as the CJ5.

1940  Here's an unusual item, although not a Wyoming one, that shows us, in part, how much things have changed even in regards to weather reports. We're so used to relatively accurate ones now, we don't recall the days when the weather was often a real surprise.  We should note that this winter event did stretch out across the plains to Wyoming, even though it didn't have the devastating impact here that it did in Iowa.

Iowa's 1940 Armistice Day blizzard.


1942 Congress lowered the age of conscription to 18 and raised the upper limit to age 37.

1943  The Commander of the Prisoner of War Camp in Douglas announced that 1,000 Italians held at the camp would be helping with the fall harvest. Given the timing of the announcement, it would have to be presumed that the harvest was well underway at the time.  As Douglas itself is not in a farming belt, it would be interesting to know where the POWs actually went, and how they were housed.  Attribution:  Wyoming State Historical Society.

1950  A DC-3 belonging to a religious missionary organization hit Mount Moran in dense cloud cover, killing all 21 people on board.  The impact was nearly direct, and nothing from the plane could be recovered, including the bodies of the victims, all of whom remain on Mount Moran.

1954  November 11 designated as Veterans Day to honor veterans of all U.S. wars.  This was due in part to the efforts of Alvin J. King of Emporia Kansas.