n 1886, Douglas, Wyoming sprang up almost overnight as the CB&Q Railroad reached central Wyoming. By December of that year a bustling group of entrepreneurs had opened three newspapers, two banks, 12 general stores, 20 smaller stores, hotels, restaurants, lumber yards, drug and jewelry stores, two dance halls and 21 saloons serving a population of 1,600.
Downtown Douglas embraced growth during the teens and early twenties of the 20th Century. The towering and luxurious LaBonte Hotel, the Princess Theater, a second railroad depot and a booming Ford Garage, were just a few of the businesses added.
In the late 1970s, pursuit of coal, oil and uranium pushed the population further. With the addition of natural gas production and wind energy development, the community continues to grow.
Douglas has long been known as the “Jackalope City.”
Visit “Jack,” downtown in Jackalope Square.
t the heart of that growth is a concrete jackalope, “Jack,” who stands in Jackalope Square. The Square is home to many community events and community gatherings. Douglas was officially named the “Jackalope City” in 1985, but the local icon dates back nearly 100 years. Jack makes a great photo backdrop!
Amidst the rich history and creativity, Douglas’ entrepreneurial spirit is alive and well. The same downtown area that is rich in Douglas history is part of Wyoming’s Main Street program. Downtown businesses work together, via the Main Street program, to beautify and enhance the downtown area.