Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Northern Wyoming

Unlike the desert of southern Wyoming, northern Wyoming is a mixture of beautiful mountains and grasslands.  Moving from east to west, you leave the Black Hills into the Thunder National Grassland.  At Buffalo and Sheridan you enter the Big Horn Mountains.  Buffalo is the county seat of Johnson county, location of the famous Johnson County War between the open range ranchers and the homesteaders.  It's quite a story.  The Wyoming Stock Growers Association wheeled as much power as the state legislature (several people were members of both)  It is reported that the WSGA hired some Texans to run the homesteaders out of Johnson county.  Some of the settlers were murdered but they rose up and surrounded the cattlemen.  The US Calvary arrived and escorted the ranchers to safety of a jail and everything quieted down.  The book "The Banditti of the Plains" by A.S. Mercer was written about the incident.  In the 1900's the books were destroyed and it was dangerous to own a copy as late as the 1950's.  My grandfather hid his and only a few people in the family knew of his acquisition.

North of Sheridan, in Montana, is the Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument, location of the battle between Gen. George Custer and the Indians (Lakota Souix and the Northern Cheyenne).  Although not in Wyoming, a trip to Sheridan would not be complete without visiting the battlefield. 

Sheridan is also the headquarters for the International Association of Turtles.  For those of you who are Turtles, no explanation is needed.  For those of you who would like to know more click here.  There is only one correct response to the question, are you a turtle?

West of the Big Horn mountains is the Big Horn River and the plains containing the towns of Lovell, Greybull and Worland; the smaller towns of Basin, Ten Sleep and Meeteetse.....  And then there is Powell and Cody, the east entrance to Yellowstone National Park.  Cody was founded by William F. Cody (Buffalo Bill) in 1897.  It is the location of the Buffalo Bill Historic Center and the Whitney Gallery of Western Art (containing many Charley M. Russell paintings...my favorites).

The northwestern corner is the home of The Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Parks.  Yellowstone is probably one of the best know of the national parks, for it was the first.  Thank you Teddy Roosevelt.

Here are several photos I would like to share.  My father took these pictures in 1953 when he returned from Korea with his brand new 35mm camera.  Many of them were framed and hung in my parents house for years.  The original photos are on slides.

Yellowstone lodge before the fire.  The lodge survived but the forest didn't.

Old Faithful gyser.  I have a funny story about my friend Chris and his trip to Old faithful.  I'll share it on the Teton Post

Lower falls of the Yellowstone River.

Elk or Wapiti

Our next visit to Wyoming will be Jackson Hole and the Teton Mountains.  Until then, remember, life ain't about how fast you run, or high you climb, but how well you bounce. 

Don't squat on your spurs!

2 comments:

shayshaydc said...

Great story!!!! In the second paragraph... if you are going to put a period after monument then you need to make the L on location a capital..

The pictures are absolutely gorgeous!!!

Wanna dance?????????? hehe

Luv ya!!!!!

helmswondermom said...

The pictures are beautiful!  I really enjoyed this little journey.  I would love to find a copy of the Mercer book.  I think it's great that your grandfather had a copy he kept hidden, and I hope someone in your family still has it.
Lori