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Hot Springs County Museum and Cultural Center

Hot Springs County Museum and Cultural Center

  • Author:
  • Date Posted: May 6, 2014
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  • Location
  • Address: 700 Broadway Street, Thermopolis, WY 82443, USA


We visited this location in the middle of the night in April 2009.

Thermopolis is the largest town in Hot Springs County with a population of just over 3,000 residents. It is also the county seat.

Thermopolis was founded in 1897. It’s name is of Greek derivation and is indicative of it’s natural hot springs. The name “Thermopolis” is thus related to the name of the Greek pass known as “Thermopylae” where Leonidas gave his life to save Sparta.

At the entrance to the Wind River Canyon south of Thermopolis, the Wind River changes to the Big Horn River because each end of the river was named by different explorers, which was discovered later, after both ends had been given different names.

Butch Cassidy, Al Haimer, Bob McCoy, Jakey Snyder, Dusty Jim, Mike Brown, Jim McCloud, and Kise Eads frequented the Thermopolis bars back in the day. Apparently, the Wilcox Robbery, which occurred on June 2, 1889 was featured in the movie Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. Five miles west of Thermopolis is Owl Creek Bridge where a group of desperados who had robbed and bank and murdered a man were finally captured.

The world’s largest natural hot springs is located in Hot Springs State Park and it is open to the public for free due to a treaty that was signed in 1896 with the Shoshone and the Arapahoe Indians.

The Hot Springs County Museum and Cultural Center houses a variety of items including pioneer memorabilia from between 1890 and 1910. There are plans to create a special exhibit covering the lfe of Tim McCoy who lived in Thermopolis between 1912 and 1942 during which time he built the High Eagle Ranch. The High Eagle Ranch is located 45 miles west of Thermopolis. Tim McCoy was an actor in lower-budget cowboy movies.

Paleotological digs are conducted by the Wyoming Dinosaur Center also located in Thermopolis.

Paranormal Reports:

Reports of apparitions wearing period dress as well as orbs in the museum.


No Author (n.d.). Big Horn Basin Photos. Retrieved December 8, 2009 from

No Author. (n.d.). Hot Springs Public Library. Retrieved December 8, 2009 from

Shadowlord (1998). Shadowlands Haunted Places Index. Retrieved August 11, 2008 from

Wikipedia (2009). Thermopolis, Wyoming. Retrieved December 8, 2009 from,_Wyoming

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