While it was still part of Dakota Territory, the town of Laramie was founded in 1868 with the arrival of the Union Pacific Railroad. Laramie’s placement on the high plains at an elevation of 7,200 feet has
not made for an easy existence, but the hardy ranching families and cowboys, with their cattle hunkered down against the winds and snow, survived in spite of their harsh surroundings and even thrived in this unique eastern Wyoming town. This is the place where the infamous Jack McCall hid from the authorities, where Teddy Roosevelt rode the range, and where Butch Cassidy was held at the Wyoming Territorial Prison. From its early, rowdy days as an end-of-the-tracks tent town on the railroad, with gambling halls and an active nightlife, through the growing-up years of mills, quarries, and local wartime heroes, to the establishment of Wyoming’s only state university, Laramie’s remarkable story is told here through historic photographs.