Located at 5,150 feet above sea level, on the banks of the North Platte River on Wyoming’s high plains, Casper is the seat of Natrona County. The town began when the tracks of the Fremont, Elkhorn & Missouri Valley Railroad arrived in June 1888, and was named for nearby Fort Casper, by then a ruin. The fort had been named for Lt. Caspar Collins, killed near the fort by Indians in 1865. The Army misspelled his first name when they renamed Platte Bridge Station not long after his death.
Soon after the railroad arrived the town became an important shipping point for cattle and wool. Its earliest buildings stood about at the intersection of what are now A and McKinley streets. However, as soon as the railroad’s land company began to plat residential and business sites, people in the nascent town packed up and moved about a mile west. By the fall of 1888, the center of town was the corner of Center and Second streets, where it remains today.
On April 9, 1889, residents asked the officials of Carbon County to allow the incorporation of the town of Casper. (Natrona County would not split off from Carbon County until the following year.) The request was approved, and on July 8, 1889, voters elected George Mitchell as mayor, and Robert White, Peter Demorest, Alexander McKinney and John Adams as councilmen.