Wyoming at 125: Our Place in the West
Author Bill Sniffin says, “It was always my intention to cause Wyoming’s 180 million year history to come alive in his newest coffee table book about the state.”
Called Wyoming at 125, Our Place in the West, the book attempts to show what Wyoming looked like over its long history.
In every nook and cranny, in every city and town, on every mountain and deep in every valley – well, Wyoming is full of great historical stories.
Genesis of this new coffee table book was from the state of Wyoming when a couple of state agencies asked Sniffin to do a coffee table book to celebrate the 125th anniversary of Wyoming’s statehood.
As readers of his two earlier coffee table books know, he loves to show off Wyoming with the best photography and most colorful photography possible.
But if you want to publish outstanding color images, how do you do that with 100-year old, fuzzy, black and white photos?
The great pioneer photographers, J. E. Stimson, Charles Belden, William Henry Jackson, Frank Meyers and others were every bit as talented as today’s photographers, but were limited by bad equipment and bad facilities.
In truth, their cameras, which were huge, took great photos. It was impossible to get high quality black and white prints. And color was a half a century off into the future.
Was Sniffin going to be stuck with publishing over 50 black and white photos? Not so fast.
In December, 2014, he watched a program on the History Channel that featured Abe Lincoln and the Civil War “in color.” The photos were amazing. He tracked down the lab in Michigan, which had colorized those famous Mathew Brady images, and his problems with those old Wyoming photos were solved.
The new book has 52 of the most iconic historical photos ever taken in Wyoming. Thanks to the lab's photo editing capabilities, the old, fuzzy and black and white images come alive in the pages of this book. They look like they were taken this week.
People who have previewed the book are amazed.
The book is jammed full of iconic Wyoming historical photos ranging from portraits of Chief Washakie and Buffalo Bill Cody to a photo of Amelia Earhart in Cheyenne celebrating her recent flight across the Atlantic.