- Wyoming Territory
The Territory of Wyoming was an organized territory of the
United Statesthat existed from 1868until its admission to the Union as the State of Wyomingin 1890. Cheyenne was the territorial capital. The boundaries of Wyoming Territory were identical those of the modern state of Wyoming.
Because of Wyoming's location at the intersection of the
Louisiana Purchase, the Oregon Country, and the Mexican Cession, the land which became Wyoming has a complicated history of territorial relationships. Portions of the territory which eventually fell under Wyoming's jurisdiction were at various points associated with Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Dakota, Nebraskaand Utah, and had previously belonged to the independent states of Great Britain, France, Spain, Mexico, and Texas.
The portion of the Wyoming Territory east of the
continental dividewas acquired by the U.S. in the 1803Louisiana Purchase and organized into the Nebraska Territoryin 1854. In 1861, the northern half of the Nebraska Territory, including the northeastern portion of future Wyoming Territory became part of the Dakota Territory(left), while the southeastern portion remained with Nebraska, forming an extended Nebraska "panhandle" which included the settlement of Cheyenne. In 1863, the Idaho Territorywas formed; it included the entirety of the modern states of Idahoand Montanaand almost all of modern Wyoming save the southwest corner.
The portion of the Wyoming Territory west of the continental divide and north of the 42nd parallel was originally part of the
Oregon Country, which was organized into the Oregon Territoryin 1848; when Oregonentered the union as a state under its present boundaries in 1859, this land became part of the Washington Territory(although its eastern part had been granted to the Nebraska Territoryin 1854(right). The Idaho Territorysubsumed this land as well in 1863.
The southwestern corner of what became the Wyoming Territory, south of the 42nd parallel, became part of the United States with the
1848 Mexican Cession. An eastern section of this was once claimed by the Republic of Texas. In 1851, the portion of this land west of the continental divide was made part of the Utah Territory, and, with the organization of the Colorado Territoryin 1861, most of it was transferred to the Nebraska Territory (left) and subsumed into the Idaho Territory in 1863. A small corner of Wyoming remained part of Utah until the creation of the Wyoming Territory in 1868.
1864, with the formation of the Montana Territory, the southeastern section of the Idaho Territory (most of modern Wyoming) became briefly part of Dakota Territoryonce again (right), although a strip of land along the western border of what would become Wyoming remained part of the Idaho Territory.
The territory was created by Act of Congress on
July 25, 1868. At the time of its formation, it took land from the Dakota, Idaho, and Utah Territories. It was admitted to the Union as the 44th state on July 10, 1890.
Territorial evolution of the United States
*U.S. congressional delegates from Wyoming Territory
* [http://www.statehousegirls.net/wy/timeline/ Timeline of Wyoming History]
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