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Brian Beadles
Historic Preservation Specialist
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  • Daniel School


    Read All About It:

    The Daniel School was constructed in 1920 by A.F. Atwood, General Contractor and Builder, from Big Piney, Wyoming. It is an early rural school significant because it represents the theme of early twentieth century education in an isolated, sparsely populated ranching community. The harsh climate with severe winters and short growing seasons precluded the development of a farming economy. Instead, the region was ideally suited for livestock grazing, which resulted in a small number of large ranches and a small population. Providing the children of Sublette County with an education presented unique problems. In a vast region with a poor transportation system and long winters, numerous one-room schools were created to serve a few nearby ranches. Classes were often held in bunkhouses or other adapted buildings or in small one-room log schools that could be easily moved from one location to another as needed. As the region became more settled and the towns began to grow in population early in the twentieth century, more substantial permanent school buildings were built to replace the early log or frame one-room schools. The Daniel school is representative of this second stage of educational development in the region.

    Consolidation brought an end to the Daniel School. Daniel had been a part of District No. 8. This was the first school district to be eliminated in the earliest serious attempt at consolidation in Sublette County. Starting with the 1939-1940 school year, District No. 8 was incorporated into District No. 1, and Daniel pupils were transported to Pinedale for classes. The Daniel School stood abandoned for years until the Daniel Homemaker Club or Daniel Do Mores acquired it. This community organization repaired and remodeled the building which has been used for community clubs, organizations, and activities.



    Date Added to Register:
    Wednesday, September 05, 1990
    Sublette County
    Smithsonian Number: 


  • Father DeSmet's "Prairie Mass"


    Read All About It:

    The site of ''The Prairie Mass'' is on a broad open plain atop a high bluff overlooking the Upper Green River valley. The Prairie Mass represents one of the earliest occurrences of organized Christian religious ceremony to take place in the Rocky Mountain region and the first Catholic Mass to be held in the area that now comprises the State of Wyoming. This Mass, which took place on Sunday, July 5, 1840, is also a symbolic reminder of the missionary movement on the Western Frontier that so greatly influenced the cultural transition of many of the American Indian tribes. The Mass was conducted by Reverend Pierre DeSmet.

    After several missions among the Indians, Father DeSmet started out from St. Louis on March 27, 1840 to begin work among the Flathead tribe located in the Upper Missouri valley. Joining an American Fur Company caravan, Father DeSmet journeyed up the valley of the Platte River past Fort Laramie, Independence Rock, over South Pass, and paused briefly at the annual fur trader's rendezvous in the shadow of the Wind River Mountains on the Upper Green River. Father DeSmet added a new element to the rendezvous by delivering sermons and lectures, holding religious ceremonies, and participating in council discussions with various groups of Indians. It is estimated that 2,000 Indians, trappers and traders were present to hear the first Mass ever celebrated in the Rocky Mountains. The congregation was addressed in both French and English with the Indians spoken to through an interpreter. The Canadians sang hymns in French and Latin and the Indians in their native tongue. When the service concluded, the French-Canadians christened the site ''La Prairie de la Messe'' -- the Prairie of the Mass.



    Date Added to Register:
    Tuesday, April 28, 1970
    Sublette County
    Smithsonian Number: 


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