Located in the heart of Fremont County, with and area larger than many eastern states, the Riverton area is surrounded by mountains and rivers. To the west is the Wind River Mountain Range of the Rocky Mountains. To the North is the Owl Creek Mountain Range. To the East are the Wind River and Gas Hills and to the South are the Little Wind River and the South Pass over the Wind Rivers.
Chief Washakie, Jim Bridger, Sacajawea, Butch Cassidy, Sundance Kid, Buffalo Bill, and Calamity Jane are only a few of the legends that walked this land. The modern city of Riverton was founded in 1906 during the land rush to settle acreage withdrawn by a treaty from the Wind River Indian Reservation. Totally insular within the reservation, our history blends the pioneer spirit of the homesteaders with the native cultures of the Northern Arapahoe and Eastern Shoshone Indians. As Riverton has evolved from a free-wheeling ranching and mining town into the commercial and educational hub of west-central Wyoming, it has retained the “can do” spirit and vitality of the New West.
Abound with culturally and historically significant sites and activities, ranging from prehistoric petroglyphs, pictographs, and original stone carvings and drawings to Indian missions to powwows and dance exhibitions, Riverton has a long history as a crossroads and meeting place for Native Americans, explorers, cowboys and travelers.
Riverton was officially founded on August 15, 1906. The city was born in the Gasoline Age but its history started nearly a century earlier.
Riverton is one of the youngest cities in Fremont County but it grew into the largest for several reasons. Location, Location, Location: Riverton was built nearly in the center of Wyoming’s second largest county. The town was approximately 25 miles from the county seat. It was down river of the national forests and it was at the wide end of a fan of irrigatable land. Most importantly, the railroad ran right through town which made it quickly become the center of trade in Fremont County. The Dubois tie hacks floated cut logs down the Wind River to the rail road tie treatment plant in Riverton. The ranchers and farmers brought their produce and animals to Riverton for shipment. The large retail merchants chose to set up in Riverton. And finally, the city had a good fortune to be built in the center of huge deposits of coal, oil, natural gas and uranium. Another reason for Riverton’s growth is that cause’s breeds success. As the city grew, it attracted even more people, more businesses, more industry and more creative thinking. The city was originally settled by risk takers who were willing to trade the security of humdrum life for a tent o the desolate Wyoming prairie. They brought vitality to the area that still exists today.