About this Website
Wyoming Places is an ongoing project to create an online resource about the place names of Wyoming. It began as an idea of the reference librarians at Wyoming State Library who received many questions about Wyoming places and the origin of Wyoming place names. Individuals from throughout Wyoming have assisted and we have used resources from collections throughout the state and the rest of the U.S.
The purpose of Wyoming Places is to give the user information about the origin of the name of a place, a brief history of that place and stories about it. We are using original sources as well as published sources in the public domain. Names of the sources are given for those who want to do further research. We also link to online resources that relate to the place. These resources must be consistent with our focus and be authoritative, persistent, and noncommercial.
Official geographic names are designated by the U.S. Geological Survey, Board on Geographic Names in partnership with the Wyoming Geographic Names Board. Wyoming Places uses the official names but gives other spellings and names if they exist. There are more than 28,000 officially named places in Wyoming. That doesn't include hundreds of names of places that no longer exist. Wyoming Places presently includes about 3000 place names, both current and historical.
In order to appear on the map, places must have a latitude and longitude. If the place is listed in the U.S. Geological Survey, Geographic Names Information System, we use the latitude and longitude given there. For places not listed, we have derived their latitude and longitude from historic records and maps. For some places, we have not been able to find their latitude and longitude. If you search for these places, you will get information about them but they will not display on the map.
Places are assigned at least one feature type. Feature types are divided into those that are man-made, land-based, water-based or special (often governmental designations). A location can be assigned more than one feature type. For example, a city or town could also be a post office and/or a railroad station.
The source that provides the information about a place name is given in parentheses at the end of the entry. A full list of sources can be found on Links & Resources.
What is a Place Name?
A place name is defined as the name of a geographical locality, region or some other part of the earth's surface. Another name for a place name is toponym. Toponymy is the scientific study of toponyms, their origin and history. More about toponymy can be found in this article from the Encyclopaedia Britannica.
What web browsers work best for Wyoming Places?
Most web browsers will view Wyoming Places, but Google Chrome or Firefox work best.
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The accuracy or reliability of information in Wyoming Places is not guaranteed in any way.
Information obtained from Wyoming Places is for personal use only and cannot be used for any unlawful, commercial and/or political purposes. Please credit the Wyoming State Library when using this information.
By providing links to other sites, we do not guarantee, approve, or endorse the information or products available at these sites, nor does a link indicate any association with or endorsement by the linked site toWyoming Places.
Many of the places described are historical and may be on private property. Please respect the rights of the landowner if you are trying to visit these places.
Some historical place names and descriptions are considered inappropriate or offensive by today's standards. They are included in Wyoming Places for historical accuracy.