Humans lived on the wide open plains of what is now Wyoming at least 12,000 years ago. Signs of these longtime residents include an ancient 245-foot stone shrine that was built near Lovell, Wyoming and may have been used for important ceremonies. Thousands of years later, Indian tribes lived on this land, including the Arapaho, Cheyenne, Crow, Shoshone, and Ute. See Wyoming cities.

Geography of Wyoming

Some historians believe that the first European to arrive in Europe was explorer Fran├žois Louis Verendry in 1742. In 1868, Wyoming became a U.S. Territory, although U.S. cavalry (U.S. Army troops who fought on horseback) and Native Americans continued to fight for control of the land. In 1890, Wyoming became the 44th state. The Shoshone National Forest was designated in northwestern Wyoming in 1891 as part of the Timberland Yellowstone Preserve. It is the country’s first national forest. Members of the Shoshone and Arapaho tribes still live in Wyoming. Experts aren’t sure where the name Wyoming came from. The name may be derived from a Delaware Native American word meaning “alternating mountains and valleys” or “great plains”. It may also come from the Muncie language meaning “on a great river” or the Algonquian language meaning “great prairie place. It was nicknamed the “State of Equality” because it was the first state to grant women the right to vote, and for women to serve on juries and hold public office.

Geography of Wyoming

According to, Wyoming borders Montana to the north; Montana, Idaho and Utah in the west; Utah and Colorado in the south; and Nebraska and South Dakota to the east. It can be divided into three regions. The Great Plains stretch across the eastern part of the state and are covered with shrubs and short grasses. This region also contains the Black Hills, where the Devil’s Tower National Monument (the first national monument) stands. Devils Tower is a massive, flat-topped hill with steep slopes. (You can think of national monuments as man-made buildings, but these sites can also be important landforms!) The mountain ranges of the Rocky Mountains run north to south through most of the state. Grand Teton National Park is here. Like Yellowstone, the world’s first national park. Yellowstone is known as Old Faithful, a geyser that erupts about 17 times a day. The Intermountain Basin region lies between mountain ranges and has short grasses and few trees. It includes the Red Desert, the largest living dune system in the United States.

Wildlife of Wyoming

Buffalo, grub, black bears, grizzlies, and bighorn sheep are some of Wyoming’s many mammals. Red-tailed hawks, prairie falcons, pine jays and mountain bluebirds are some of the birds that soar overhead. Reptiles include western painted turtles, rubber boas, Great Basin skinks, and Great Plains lizards. Amphibians such as Columbia spotted frogs, Wyoming toads and western tiger salamanders can be found here. Grasses, semi-desert and desert shrubs cover almost the entire state. Sagebrush and Rocky Mountain Juniper are examples of these plants. In forested areas, you can find ponderosa pines, dompole pines, and Douglas firs. Yarrow, sticky purple geranium, pink fairies, and Indian brush (the state flower) are some of the wildflowers that grow throughout Wyoming.

Fort Laramie National Historic Site

Fort Laramie, located in the southwest of the state of Wyoming, is an important historical site that in the past played one of the most important roles in the settlement of the West of the United States of America and also in the resistance of the Indians. In 1834, a place was established here that was used for trading in furs – mainly Arapaho and Cheyenne Indians.

The place soon became known as Fort Laramie. With the arrival of 1840, caravans traveling further west to Oregon, California and Utah also began to use this place for rest. In 1849, the gold rush broke out in California, and more and more people came west looking for a quick fortune. Fort Laramie became a military fort tasked with overseeing the security of the Oregon Trail – the Oregon Trail that led from Illinois to the Pacific.

At Fort Laramie, pilgrims about to cross the crest of the Rocky Mountains also had a last chance to replenish their supplies of water and food or repair their wagons. The military garrison, of which approximately twenty buildings survive, played a key role in protecting the caravans that were plagued by Sioux attacks. For the Indians did not at all like the crowds of thousands of people moving through their territory, who, moreover, plundered their buffalo herds and whose cattle grazed all the grass along the North Platte River.

The Sioux thus began to demand material compensation. In this respect, they were granted, but only on paper. In 1851, a treaty was signed to give Natives the inviolability of the prairie land north of the North Platte River, while allowing whites to build roads and railroads there. The treaty also contained an article in which the Indians pledged to cease war with themselves. However, no one kept the treaty and no compensation ever reached the Indians. White settlers and prospectors disregarded the laws and constantly searched for gold in Indian territory. Therefore, the peace between the Sioux tribe and the white settlers did not last long. In 1854, the whites allegedly punished the Indians too harshly for petty theft, and this started the whole dispute anew. The Indians retaliated by killing 29 soldiers belonging to Fort Laramie.

Fighting between whites and Indians continued for many years until 1870, when it culminated in the Battle of Little Big Horn. In the fort, you can get to know this period perfectly, for example, a precisely processed history of the conflicts with the Indians, which escalated into the so-called Great War with the Sioux tribe, is exhibited here. At the same time, you can listen to the interpretation of local trappers, who are dressed in period costumes. He tells not only of his life in the wilderness, but also of his relations with the Indians then and now. Fort Laramie is a historic site managed by the National Park Service.

Geography of Wyoming
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