Who Partied Harder? Cheyenne 1870 vs. Cheyenne 2016
Wyoming's Capital City is well known for its rowdy and rambunctious past.
What began as a "tent city" when the railroad arrived in 1867 quickly became a haven for saloons, gambling halls and houses of ill repute. Were it not for whiskey, faro and wild women, Cheyenne probably wouldn't exist.
With that in mind, we want to know who partied harder, Cheyenne in the year 1870 or the city we currently call home?
Just to make it a fair fight, we're pitting Cheyenne's estimated population of 1,500 citizens in 1870 versus the latest census estimate of just over 62,000.
Surely, 62,000 residents collectively party more than 1,500 people did nearly 150 years ago, right? Let's find out.
According to the History of Wyoming/Territorial Days, Cheyenne had 27 saloons, four breweries, and five liquor stores in 1870. That's one establishment serving beer or liquor for every 42 residents.
According to the Yellow Pages, there are currently 32 bars or taverns operating in and around Cheyenne along with 17 liquor stores and two breweries. That works out to, roughly, one establishment for every 1,216 residents.
By that math, we can conclude that the average Cheyenne citizen in 1870 partied nearly 29 times harder than a typical resident does in this day and age.
However, with a total of 51 establishments serving alcohol in 2016 compared to only 36 in 1870, we can also say that Cheyenne, collectively, still drinks as much as it ever has.