Rawlins Things to Do

  • Union Pacific Rail Depot in Rawlins, WY
    Union Pacific Rail Depot in Rawlins, WY
    by atufft
  • Union Pacific Rail Depot in Rawlins, WY
    Union Pacific Rail Depot in Rawlins, WY
    by atufft
  • Depot Park Fountain in Rawlins, WY
    Depot Park Fountain in Rawlins, WY
    by atufft

Most Recent Things to Do in Rawlins

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    St. Joseph's Church

    by atufft Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    St. Joseph's Church in Rawlins, WY
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    According to the Wyoming Catholic Register, the cornerstone of St. Joseph's Church was laid by the Most Rev. Patrick A. McGovern, D.D., on October 10, 1915, and the Church was dedicated by the same prelate on August 6, 1916. Specific details are provided for the cost of construction are provided, but the provenance of the unique and architecturally sustantial copper bell tower are not discussed. In 1933, the interior of the church was destroyed by fire, but was subsequently rebuilt with superior materials, including a new marble altar. The church is located three blocks off Cedar at the corner of Pine and Third.

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    Wyoming Frontier Prison

    by Yaqui Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    We had stopped here since it was my things to do while on the way home from South Dakota. We were invited in by some really nice biker folks who were attending some fund raiser that was taking place at the prison. We were able to wonder around for quite some time. We finally felt it was time to set out to find a place to stay for the night. Yet, it was fascinating to see something so historical up close and was able to hear some the tour guides share their knowledge of the prison.

    The museum is within the Prison, is free, but the tour is not.

    Built to replace the territorial prison in Laramie, Called the “Old Pen” and operated from 1901 to 1981.

    Wyoming Frontier Prison Museum

    HOURS:
    April to October, 8:30 am to 6:30 pm, 7 days a week
    November to March, 9:00 am to 5:00 pm, Mon - Fri

    ADMISSION:
    Museum is Free

    Guided tours of the prison cost $4.25 for adults
    $3.75 for seniors and children.
    From Memorial Day through Labor Day, tours are offered every hour on the half hour from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., 7 days a week.
    Tour schedule is scaled back from Labor Day through Memorial Day. Call for specific times.

    Off of 80 East: First exit into Rawlins which will put you on Cedar Street. Stay on Cedar until you get to 5th Street and turn Right. You will see us on the top of 5th Street.

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    Churches of Rawlins

    by atufft Written Aug 3, 2008

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    Rawlins, WY church building

    Normally, I try to get around and shoot images of old churches, as these are typically some of the best architecture in any given town. St. Joseph's was hard to miss, but I also found right on Cedar Street this church, which I believe was originally a Methodist Church. The sun at noon day made photography difficult shooting south.

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    First National Bank

    by atufft Updated Aug 3, 2008

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    First National Bank Building, Rawlins, WY
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    I had found very substantial the architecture of a bank building in Rawlins, so when I began writing this tip, I found on-line the link below to the Rawlins National Bank. Apparently, the Rawlins National Bank, which began before the turn of the 20th century, has managed to weather many bad economic times in this frontier town, and still provides service in Carbon County today. The First National Bank on the other hand, appears defunct and unrelated to the Rawlins National Bank, and in my brief research on this industry, I could find nothing other than the inscription on this building about the bank. Today, it serves as a branch of Bank of the West. In any case, this fine granite building has some well executed architectural details. This bank is a block off the main drag in town.

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    The Osborne Building

    by atufft Written Aug 3, 2008

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    The Osborne Building in Rawlins, WY

    This building was built and named after physician, rancher, mayor, and 3rd governor of Wyoming, John Eugene Osborne. The life of this man is well documented in the wikipedia link below, but two things really stand out about this man--his Rawlins area sheep ranch was the largest in Wyoming, and secondly that he had the hide of executed murderer Big Nose George Parrott tanned and turned into a pair of shoes. See the link for more interesting biographical material about this man. In any case, his lasting memorial may well be in this fine block building architecture in downtown Rawlins, built at the turn of the 20th century.

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    The Miller Block

    by atufft Written Aug 3, 2008

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    Miller Block, Rawlins, WY
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    A grey granite block sized retail store building built by and named after Isaac C. Miller provides an interesting exception to the minimalist tendency in Rawlins. Miller was a local businessman, Sheriff, and mayor at the time the town was founded in the late 19th century. Miller became the city's first mayor, but because he was not yet a naturalized citizen of the USA, the town had to make a special exception in the city charter for his term of office. Miller had emigrated from Denmark and began as a clerk in a Rawlins retail store, later rising to become the town sheriff and then mayor. The link below has postcard images from Rawlins hey day.

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    Downtown Rawlins Architecture

    by atufft Updated Aug 3, 2008

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    Rawlins, WY Downtown
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    Cedar Street is the main street of town and has most of the interesting buildings. These images provide a general overview of the Rawlins downtown which was built mostly between late 1890's and early 20th century. The wealth generated by the railroad and oil industry is very apparent in the quality of construction, but the detail and architectural design reflects function more than art, relative to the downtowns of Laramie and Cheyenne. In this regard, note, the minimalist architecture of the old Roxie Theater. But, then several important bank and commercial retail buildings downtown are built with stone block architecture, a sure sign of wealth. Today, Rawlins is mostly the hometown for workers in the prison, and the oil refinery at Sinclair, just a few miles west on off I-80, and so the town struggles to renew itself culturally. Even so, the broad empty streets devoid of excess tourism kitsch makes Rawlins a diamond in the rough in my mind.

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    Rawlins Natural Theme Mural

    by atufft Written Aug 3, 2008

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    Rawlins Mural by Jerry Antolik

    In downtown Rawlins, on the side of the old F.W. Woolworth Building, artist Jerry Antolik, painted a landscape mural of natural life as found in Carbon County. Note that in this portrait, ranch cattle mix with horned sheep and pronehorned deer. The town is rightly proud of this masterpiece.

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    Rawlins City Hall

    by atufft Written Aug 2, 2008

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    Rawlins City Hall
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    If weakness can be determined by architecture, the fact that the Rawlins City Government filled in an empty old post office, is evidence of this. Nevertheless, the old post office building, typical of 1930's period post office construction, remains a fine building to admire. Right out front, and slightly out of place, is a wooden bench and some planted annual flowers branding this building as city hall.

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    Union Pacific Railroad Depot and Park

    by atufft Written Aug 2, 2008

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    Union Pacific Rail Depot in Rawlins, WY
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    The Union Pacific Railroad built depots at Cheyenne, Laramie, Rock Springs, and Evanston on the first main line of the transcontinental railroad, and of these Cheyenne's is clearly the most outstanding both historically and architecturally. Nevertheless, the romanesque style architecture of the Rawlins depot is worth a look as it is protected by being placed on the National Register of Historic Places. The building is constructed of granite, brick, and asphalt. The passenger train service no longer stops at the depot, but the freight rail yard on the south side of the building is still busy with oil tankers and coal cars. It was closed at the time I had visited, but I understand that the railroad has donated the building to the city. Located here is also a city park with an expanse of lawn and a relatively newly built public fountain. An old clock appears to have been moved there from elsewhere in downtown. The rail company has also donated an old caboose and other rail cars for a display that still appears to be under development in Rawlins.

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