When it comes to history in Cheyenne, there is a lot of it. But if you were to narrow things down to the most important, thrilling and significant, it would be hard to miss the reason Cheyenne even exists today: the railroad.
Without the railroad, Cheyenne wouldn’t be here. Starting as a Hell on Wheels town, Cheyenne was platted back in the 1860s as a stop for the Union Pacific Railroad as it was being built. The town boomed and bloomed, becoming one of the wealthiest places in the world by the 1880s. The railroad led to Cheyenne’s wild, lawless history in the Wild West, the establishment of a military presence at Fort D.A. Russell and, of course, the cattle trade.
The Wild West is celebrated every year in Cheyenne through its cowboy spirit and various events like Cheyenne Frontier Days and the Hell on Wheels Rodeo. The cattle trade continues at local ranches to this very day, and Fort D.A. Russell has since become F.E. Warren Air Force Base, home of the 90th Missile Wing. If you’re visiting Cheyenne, drop by the Cheyenne Depot Museum to learn more about this fascinating and incredible history.
For more information on Cheyenne, visit Cheyenne.org.