The state of Wyoming has a beautiful landscape, lush wilderness, breathtaking mountains with jutting rock formations. Wyoming has the least population in the United States and the 10th biggest by land area. If you are a tourist, you may find your self driving for hours and hours, enjoying nature’s beauty without seeing another person in some of its areas. Know more about the cowboy state with these Wyoming facts!
- Wyoming is the 44th state of the United States.
- It officially became the 44th state of the US on July 10, 1890.
- By area, Wyoming is the 10th largest state in the US.
- Wyoming’s population is more than 550,000.
- Wyoming is the least populated state in the US.
- Cheyenne is the capital of Wyoming.
- Cheyenne was named for the Cheyenne Indians, the indigenous people of the Great Plains.
- Cheyenne is also the most populous city of Wyoming, with a population of more than 60,000.
- Wyoming’s land area is 253,348 km², which is around 350 times bigger than Singapore.
- Agriculture, tourism, and manufacturing are the 3 major industries of Wyoming.
- Coal, oil, and natural gas are the most abundant minerals in Wyoming.
- Nearly half of the land of Wyoming is owned by the US Government.
- The Crow people, Arapaho, Lakota, and Shoshone (Native American tribes) are the original inhabitants of the state.
- Wyoming’s gross domestic product in 2019 is around 39 billion.
- Wyoming is the 51st largest state economy in the United States.
- Wyoming’s motto is ‘Equal Rights.’
- Bison is the state animal of Wyoming.
- Rodeo is its official State Sport.
- Equality State, Cowboy State, and Big Wyoming are the state nicknames of Wyoming.
- People from Wyoming are called Wyomingites.
The name 'Wyoming' comes from a Native American word.
It comes from the Lenape Indian word “Mechewami-ing” which means “at the big plains.” Lenape Indians were the first ones to use this name for Wyoming Valley.
Wyoming became the first state to grant women the right to vote.
In 1869, Wyoming territory became the first state to allow women with the age of 21 and above to exercise the right to vote. The historians believe that aside from empowering the women to have equal rights with men, lawmakers also passed that bill for them to draw new settlers to the state.
Wyoming was the first state to have a female governor.
The wife of Governor William Bradford Ross became the governor after he died. Nellie Tayloe Ross finished her husband’s term from 1925 to 1927. She served as the 14th governor of the state, and to this day, Nellie Tayloe Ross is the only female governor in Wyoming’s history.
Wyoming has six bordering states.
In the north part of Wyoming is Montana. On the east sides were South Dakota and Nebraska. Colorado and Utah were in the southern part and Idaho on the west part.
Yellowstone lies within the borders of Wyoming.
The United States’ oldest national park, Yellowstone, lies within the borders of Wyoming which was established in 1872. Every year, the national park receives more than 4 million visitors to see its beauty. Yellowstone approximately has 16 species of fish, 5 species of amphibians, at least five species of reptiles, 67 species of mammals, and more than 250 species of birds.
The Grand Teton National Park is located in Teton County, Wyoming.
Another famous national park in Wyoming is the Grand Teton National Park. It is in the northwestern part of the state. More than 1,000 species of vascular plants are found in the Grand Teton National Park including 300 species of birds, several mammals, and fish species, along with some species of reptiles and amphibians.
The Spanish Empire once claimed Southwestern Wyoming.
The Spanish Empire claimed Southwestern Wyoming until it was ceded to the United States in the year 1848 at the end of the Mexican–American War.
Wyoming recorded the largest swing dance.
Laramie, Wyoming was listed in the Guinness Book of World Records on April 30, 2015. More than 1,000 swing dancers (Cowboy Country Swing Club) danced all together at the same time at the University of Wyoming.
Wyoming is one of the few states that have plenty of fossils.
In the mid-1800s, Wyoming was a known destination for hunters that are looking for dinosaur bones, especially in the southeast part. The fossils were so many that in the late 19th century a local enterprising constructed a cabin using bone fragments. That cabin remains standing up to this day.
Two of the word's biggest coal mines are in Wyoming.
The Black Thunder coal mine and North Antelope Rochelle are two of the world’s biggest coal mines. Coal is a huge business in the Equality State. Approximately, 40% of the United States’ coal supply comes from Wyoming.
The Wyoming Range is part of the Rocky Mountains.
The Wyoming Range is a mountain range in western Wyoming. It’s also part of the Rocky Mountains, a mountain range from British Columbia, Canada to New Mexico, United States.
Wyoming's highest peak is at 4,210 meters.
Wyoming’s highest peak is the Gannett Peak at 4,210 meters or 13,810 feet. Gannett Peak is in the Wind River Range within the Bridger Wilderness of the Bridger-Teton National Forest.
The state flag of Wyoming has a figure of American bison.
Wyoming’s state flag has a figure of an American bison. The flag consists of three colors; red, white, and blue. The red signifies the Native Americans and the blood of the colonists. The white represents uprightness and purity. The dark blue is the color of the distant mountains and skies.
Wyoming's flag also symbolizes virility, fidelity, and justice.
Wyoming’s state flag also symbolizes virility, fidelity, and justice. The bison symbolizes the local fauna which was once the monarch of Wyoming plains. The seal signifies the culture of branding livestock.
Wyoming is known for its bison burgers.
One of the most popular food in Wyoming are Bison Burgers. Compared to beef burgers, bison meat has lesser calories, less fat, and more protein content. Elks, lambs, chokecherries, and jerkies are also part of its delicacies.
Wyoming is a politically conservative state.
Since the 1950s, Wyoming has been a politically conservative state. The state has been carrying a Republican Party’s presidential candidate every election since 1968. In the 2016 presidential election, Donald Trump won in Wyoming with 46 points or 67.4 percent. This became the best performance in the 21st century as well as Trump’s best performance in any state.
The University of Wyoming was founded in the year 1886.
The University of Wyoming was founded in the year 1886 when Wyoming is not yet officially part of the United States. The University consists of seven colleges and those are; arts and sciences, agriculture and natural resources, engineering and applied sciences, law, education, health sciences, and business.
There are 32 islands within the borders of Wyoming state.
Although Wyoming is one of the most landlocked states, this state actually has 32 named islands. Most of these islands are found in Yellowstone Lake, Jackson Lake, and Green River.
Some of those islands are uninhabited.
One of those islands is Stevenson Island. This island was named after Colonel James D. Stevenson, and it is sometimes called Stevensons Island. It lies in Yellowstone Lake in the Teton county.
Wyoming's climate is semi-arid and continental.
In general, Wyoming’s climate is semi-arid (semi-desert climate but not as low as a desert climate) and continental (hot summers and cold winters). Normally, July is the hottest month in Wyoming, about 23.9°C to 32.2°C and January is usually the coldest month where temperatures can drop more than -15°C.
Wyoming Indian Paintbrush is its state flower.
Castilleja linariifolia or Wyoming Indian paintbrush is the state’s national flower. This flower is a perennial plant and native to the United States.
Jack Shepard (Matthew Fox), from the TV series Lost, grew up in Wyoming.
Some of the most famous Wyomingites or locals from Wyoming are John Buck (baseball player), Mildred Harris (actress), Matthew Fox (actor), Isabel Jewell (actress), Jackson Pollock (painter), and Curt Gowdy (sportscaster).
Matthew Fox was not born in Wyoming.
Although the actor Matthew Fox was born in Abington, Pennsylvania, on July 14, 1966, they moved to Wyoming when he was one year old. Matthew’s father became a rancher, while her mother worked as a teacher. Matthew Fox had a good career in acting with a net worth of around $20 million.
Cheyenne, Wyoming is one of the richest cities in the world during the 1880s.
Cheyenne became wealthy due to its flourishing cattle industry and Gold Rush in the 1880s. This place was the center of cattle trade because of its railroad convenience. Cheyenne has vast mineral wealth that attracted miners and gold prospectors.
The Supreme Court of Wyoming is the state's highest court.
The Supreme Court of Wyoming is led by the Chief Justice and four Associate Justices (members of a judicial panel after the chief justice). All justices must have at least nine years’ experience in the law, at least 30 years old, and a lawyer. They should also be a US citizen who has resided in Wyoming for at least three years. Wyoming’s justices have mandatory retirement at the age of 70 years old.
Michael K. Davis is the current Chief Justice of Wyoming.
The current Chief Justice of Wyoming is Michael K. Davis (appointed on August 30, 2012 – term expiry on 2023) while Wyoming’s four Associate Justices are; Kate M. Fox, Keith G. Kautz, Lynne J. Boomgaarden, and Kari Jo Gray.
Other languages are also spoken in Wyoming.
About 94% of Wyomingites use the English language as the primary spoken language. It is followed by Spanish, German, French, Russian, Tagalog, Algonquian, and Greek. While the most dominant religions are Protestants (50%), followed by Catholics, Mormons, and Jewish.
Wyoming is one of the states to have the biggest potential for wind power.
The high-altitude and geography of Wyoming provide an excellent spot for wind power. They have the largest industrial wind production facility in the United States which is the Chokecherry and Sierra Madre Energy project.
Wyoming is the second happiest and healthiest state in the US.
Wyoming ranked number two in 10 happiest and healthiest states in the United States. *The top 10 happiest and healthiest states are Hawaii (64.6), Wyoming (64.2), Alaska (63.9), Montana (63.5), Utah (63.4), Colorado (63.4), Vermont (63.3), Delaware (62.9), South Dakota (62.7), and North Dakota (62.7).
* scores out of 100
"The happiness of Wyoming comes from its landscape, people, and weather."
According to some of its locals, the diversity of their landscape and its people, including the weather were the reasons given why they are so happy to live in Wyoming.