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Why Some Wyomingites Celebrate Wyoming Day in December?

Jaimel Blajszczak, Townsquare Media
Jaimel Blajszczak, Townsquare Media

The Equality State recently celebrated its 127th year of statehood. Although Wyoming was formally recognized as the 44th state on July 10, 1890 and has become the basis for Statehood Day at the Territorial Prison and Laramie’s Jubilee Days, December 10 is the date that is officially recognized as Wyoming Day.

On December 6, 1869, Territorial Governor John Campbell signed the bill then known as the Women’s Suffrage Act into law. The first law of its kind in America, it set the precedent for the 19th Amendment, which was ratified 51 years later.

Prior to the bill becoming law, the issue of women’s suffrage became a hot topic in Wyoming’s legislature. To convince lawmakers to pass the bill, legislator William Bright convinced his fellow legislators that granting women’s suffrage would bring good publicity for the territory, with railroaders and other businesses with it.

Later, the Wyoming Federation of Women’s Clubs requested that Wyoming Day be celebrated in December to commemorate the passage of the bill. For 18 years, each state legislature passed a resolution claiming December 10 as Wyoming day until it finally became official in 1935.

See Photos from Laramie's Statehood Celebration

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