After World War II, millions of returning GIs were ready to start families and find homes. Wyoming’s borders expanded south and west, annexing farmland on both sides of Compton Road and the area we call “Hilltop”. The annexations allowed the city to offer housing developments for new residents, and Wyoming’s population boomed from 4,466 in 1940 to 7,736 in 1960, a 73% increase. Two new architectural trends dominated during the Baby Boom years of 1946-1964: the Modernist house and the ranch house. The flat Hilltop area proved to be ideal for the new ranch-style houses with big yards. And Modernist architecture was perfect for homes on Wyoming’s challenging, hilly lots that were avoided by traditional builders.
What’s Up Wyoming is providing an encore of six posts on the significant architecture styles in Wyoming. Each new post includes a pdf with a map to see the featured homes. Use these stories as guides to learn more about the historic progression of Wyoming and the individual beauty of its architectural styles, ranging from the earliest homes of the 1850s to the mid-century modern ranches and split-levels of the 1950s-1970s. You can also pick up a large color map of Wyoming, produced in 2014, at the city administrative office on Oak Avenue and at the Wyoming Rec Center, or you can download a pdf of a simplified map from the city website by clicking here.
Modernist and ranch homes are not limited to Wyoming’s western and southern neighborhoods. Whether you are taking a break from virtual meetings or challenging yourself to walk all 128 of Wyoming’s streets, you will see examples of homes of the Baby Boom era in almost every neighborhood as lots were subdivided to meet demand. In Wyoming’s Historic District, you can see ranch homes on Oliver Road alongside Tudor Revivals of the early 20th century, and on Wilmuth Avenue along with Georgian Revival and Craftsman bungalow styles. Around the corner on Burns Avenue, a midcentury modern home with a distinctive “butterfly” roof is found near Queen Anne homes of the Victorian era.
You can find more details about the homes listed on the map, along with additional photos and information about architects Benjamin Dombar and James Alexander, in the What’s Up Wyoming post “The Baby Boom and the Housing Boom: Mid-Century Moderns and Ranches in Wyoming” here.