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People & Peoples

Verda James, First Full-term Woman Speaker of Wyoming's House of Representatives

Verda James, a schoolteacher, deputy director of public instruction for the state of Wyoming, assistant superintendent of the Natrona County schools, and later a faculty member at Casper College, was first elected to the Wyoming House in 1954. She served eight terms. During the last term, 1969-1970, she was elected House speaker, the first woman to serve in that position for a full term.

Robert Roripaugh, Wyoming Poet Laureate 1995-2002

The clear, quiet poetry and fiction of Robert Roripaugh, poet laureate of Wyoming from 1995 through 2002, has long been informed by his youth on his family’s ranch near Lander. In the early 1950s, Roripaugh won bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of the Wyoming before spending two years with the U.S. Army in Japan, where he met and married his wife, Yoshiko. In 1958, the Atlantic Monthly published a short story, and Roripaugh has been publishing and winning prizes on a national level ever since. Also that year he began teaching in the English department at the University of Wyoming, rising to the rank of full professor before retiring in 1993.

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Encyclopedia | President Hayes appointed John Hoyt Governor of Wyoming Territory on April 10, 1878. The new Governor took the oath of office May 29, 1878 and served until August 22, 1882.
Encyclopedia | President Cleveland appointed George W. Baxter Territorial Governor in 1886. The new Governor took the oath of office November 11, 1886 and served until December 20, 1886.
Encyclopedia | John Osborne was elected Governor and served from January 1893 to January 1895. He was also a member of Congress from March 1897 to March 1899,
Encyclopedia | Elected Secretary of State in 1946, Arthur Crane became acting Governor in 1949 at the age of 72. After his term as Governor he wrote many articles on education and was active in many education organizations.
Encyclopedia | Joseph Hickey was elected Governor and served two years before resigning in January 1961 to fill the U.S. Senate seat vacated by the death of Senator Elect Keith Thomson.
Encyclopedia | Nels Smith was elected Governor in November 1938 and served until 1943. he was Defeated during his bid for reelection.
Encyclopedia | After joining the Republican Party, Amos W. Barber was elected Secretary of State in September 1890 and served until January of 1895. Secretary Barber's term was interrupted while he served as Acting Governor from November 24, 1890 until January 2, 1893.
Encyclopedia | Thomas Moonlight was elected State Senator for Leavenworth County in 1872 and then appointed Governor of Wyoming Territory by President Cleveland on January 5, 1887. Governor Moonlight took the oath of office January 24, 1887 serving until April 9, 1889

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