On a spring day 157 years ago, Robert Reily called a meeting of his neighbors to be held in his home, Twin Oaks, for the purpose of naming the village that was rapidly developing. The invited residents met in his parlor and “Wyoming” was officially born.
To honor this event and document it for current and future generations, an historical marker was created and placed in front of the former home of Col. Reily at 629 Liddle Lane and dedicated on the anniversary of the event, April 4. The home is now owned by Tony and Cathy Ramstetter. Following the dedication, the Historical Society and the Ramstetters hosted a private fundraiser/reception in the same room where the village meeting took place 157 years earlier.
According to the story of the iconic day in Wyoming history, it was Col. Reily himself who broke a tie in the voting by selecting “Wyoming,” an Indian name that means broad valley. In 1874, Wyoming officially became a village with 600 residents.
“While we are not natives of Wyoming, we feel privileged to be the caretakers of such a historical home for the community,” said Cathy Ramstetter. “We chose to sponsor the historical marker to help bring a sense of identity to the community, and to help remember the house and what happened here. The portrait of Col. Reily continues to look over the Wyoming Room, and greet the 3rd grade students when they come for their annual history tour.”
The idea for Wyoming historical markers developed several years ago out of a Vermont Elementary School 3rd Grade historical markers project. The Historical Society then met to develop a list of potential markers and the plan the design. The first Wyoming historical markers were dedicated in 2016 to memorialize the original community train station off of Crescent Avenue and the Doughboy statue at the Civic Center. So far, six markers have been created and dedicated.
The markers are funded through private donations, and anyone can propose or sponsor one. Markers can also honor or memorialize individuals. If you think your house should be considered for an historical marker, contact the Wyoming Historical Society for more information, email@example.com.
The next Wyoming historical marker dedication, honoring the original Wyoming Avenue School property, will take place Friday, May 18 at 3 p.m. on the left end of the Middle School building on Wyoming Avenue.
For more information on the markers or the history of Wyoming, contact the Wyoming Historical Society, firstname.lastname@example.org.