The Online Encyclopedia of Wyoming History

An Arapaho priest, a rough rider regiment and early attempts to slow big-game slaughter

An Arapaho priest, a rough rider regiment and early attempts to slow big-game slaughter

July 2020

This month, we feature Wyoming’s part in the Spanish-American War, a white-educated Northern Arapaho and the story of wild game hunting laws. Also, visit our Education page for a new digital toolkit about Fort Halleck during the Civil War.

Sherman Coolidge’s metamorphosis

Sherman Coolidge, a Northern Arapaho adopted and educated by whites, served 26 years as an Episcopal priest on the reservation on Wind River. During that time, he largely allied himself with government over tribal interests.  But later, active in the pan-Indian movement, he came to value preservation of Indian cultures over assimilation. Read more in Tadeusz Lewandowski’s article “Sherman Coolidge: Arapaho Priest in a Changing World."

A train wrecks the plan

Rough Riders are usually associated with Theodore Roosevelt, but his was not the only cowboy regiment organized to fight in the Spanish American War of 1898. Wyoming had its rough riders, too, but due to a train mishap and the shortness of the war, they never saw combat. Read more in Phil Roberts's article "The Other Roughriders: Col. Torrey and Wyoming’s Volunteer Cavalry."

The long history of Wyoming's hunting laws

When present Wyoming was still part of Dakota Territory, hunters already were killing elk, deer and antelope by the thousands, often to sell the meat and hides. Tentatively at first and then more strongly, Wyoming territorial and state legislatures began passing game laws—and providing for their enforcement. Read more in Kim Viner's article "From Slaughter to Law: Wyoming Protects Big Game—Slowly."

New Lesson Plan

Fort Halleck and the Overland Trail

Museums and history sites begin to reopen

Many of Wyoming’s museums and historic sites reopened in June after months shut down for the coronavirus pandemic. For the present, most require visitors to wear masks and maintain social distancing, and some have limited the number of people that may visit at any one time. For detailed information, click on the links below: