WyoHistory.org

The Online Encyclopedia of Wyoming History

Rebecca Hein

Rebecca Hein

Rebecca Hein is the author of more than 95 published articles, in print and online, mostly about cello playing and its relation to a variety of subjects from marriage to taxes. Her articles and essays have appeared in publications as diverse as The Writer, the CAG Quarterly (California Association for the Gifted), and the American Reporter online. She is the former principal cellist of the Wyoming Symphony Orchestra and wrote arts columns for the Casper Star-Tribune from 2000-2006. She blogs about the connection between music and writing at www.musicofwriting.wordpress.com, about the special needs of gifted children at www.caseofbrilliance.wordpress.com, and about how living is like music at www.livingislikemusic.wordpress.com.

John Wesley Powell: Explorer, Thinker, Scientist and Bureaucrat

In 1869 and 1871, John Wesley Powell led two expeditions from Wyoming Territory down the Green and Colorado rivers. These and other explorations brought him to a profound understanding of how the West’s aridity limits its economic prospects. He directed the U.S. Geological Survey from 1881-1894, and his ideas still affect land and water policy today. 

Moon Shadows over Wyoming: The Solar Eclipses of 1878, 1889 and 1918

Three total solar eclipses have crossed Wyoming since territorial times—in 1878, 1889 and 1918. Two in particular drew prominent astronomers and scientific discoveries. These are especially interesting now, with the August 21, 2017 eclipse likely to draw huge crowds to a very different Wyoming from the one that last saw moon shadows in daytime.

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Encyclopedia | In 1869 and 1871, John Wesley Powell led two expeditions from Wyoming Territory down the Green and Colorado rivers. These and other explorations brought him to a profound understanding of how the West’s aridity limits its economic prospects. He directed the U.S. Geological Survey from 1881-1894, and his ideas still affect land and water policy today. 
Encyclopedia | Mountaineer Finis Mitchell shared his love of the Wind River Range through postcards, public talks and a famed, hip-pocket hiking guide. He ran a fishing camp, worked on the railroad, stocked mountain lakes with fingerling trout and served in the Wyoming House of Representatives. Mitchell Peak was named in his honor. 
Encyclopedia | The Mountain Shoshone, sometimes called Sheepeaters, lived at high elevations in what’s now northwestern Wyoming from prehistoric times down through the mid-1800s. Recent archaeological discoveries shed increasing light on the lives of these peoples, ancestors of some of today’s Eastern Shoshone.
Encyclopedia | Recent, surprising discoveries including a prehistoric village in the Wind River Range above Dubois, Wyo., suggest humans—most likely ancestors of today’s Shoshone people—lived high-mountain lives as long as 10,000 years ago. 
Encyclopedia | Scientist, scholar and poet June Etta Downey, an internationally recognized expert in personality testing, was longtime head of the University of Wyoming psychology department. She published seven books and scores of articles, and served on the UW faculty for 34 years before her death in 1932. 
Encyclopedia | Crossing what’s now Wyoming in sub-zero cold, Elizabeth Cumming suffered a badly frostbitten foot in November 1857. She and her husband Alfred—the new governor of Utah Territory—and about 2,000 U.S. troops were unsure if they’d be welcomed in Salt Lake City—or faced with armed resistance.
Encyclopedia | The 1880s cattle boom seemed to promise a rich future for Alexander Swan, who amassed 4.5 million acres in southeastern Wyoming to graze 100,000 head. His extravagant tenure ended quickly—but the ranch lasted generations.
Encyclopedia | Three total solar eclipses have crossed Wyoming since territorial times—in 1878, 1889 and 1918. Two in particular drew prominent astronomers and scientific discoveries. These are especially interesting now, with the August 21, 2017 eclipse likely to draw huge crowds to a very different Wyoming from the one that last saw moon shadows in daytime.

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