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Buffalo, Wyoming

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Buffalo, Wyoming

Buffalo, Wyoming
Occidental Hotel, Buffalo, Wyoming
Occidental Hotel, Buffalo, Wyoming
Location of Buffalo, Wyoming
Location of Buffalo, Wyoming
Buffalo, Wyoming is located in USA
Buffalo, Wyoming
Buffalo, Wyoming
Location in the United States
Country United States
State Wyoming
County Johnson
 • Total 4.46 sq mi (11.55 km2)
 • Land 4.46 sq mi (11.55 km2)
 • Water 0 sq mi (0 km2)
Elevation 4,646 ft (1,416 m)
Population (2010)[2]
 • Total 4,585
 • Estimate (2012[3]) 4,625
 • Density 1,028.0/sq mi (396.9/km2)
Time zone Mountain (MST) (UTC-7)
 • Summer (DST) MDT (UTC-6)
ZIP codes 82834, 82840
Area code(s) 307
FIPS code 56-10685[4]
GNIS feature ID 1586043[5]

Buffalo is a city in Johnson County, Wyoming, United States. The population was 4,585 at the 2010 census. It is the county seat of Johnson County.[6] In recent years, the town has boomed economically due to methane production from the coal bed methane extraction method used in the Powder River Basin and surrounding areas.[7]Even though energy is a vital part of its economy, agriculture and tourism are two other major components. Buffalo is located at the foot of the Big Horn Mountains, so recreation is a short distance away. Many generational ranchers still run cattle and sheep over the highly productive terrain.


Buffalo is located at (44.347479, -106.701222).[8]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 4.46 square miles (11.55 km2), all of it land.[1]


2010 census

As of the census[2] of 2010, there were 4,585 people, 2,080 households, and 1,198 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,028.0 inhabitants per square mile (396.9/km2). There were 2,300 housing units at an average density of 515.7 per square mile (199.1/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 95.5% White, 0.3% African American, 1.6% Native American, 0.7% Asian, 0.8% from other races, and 1.2% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 3.5% of the population.

There were 2,080 households of which 26.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 45.4% were married couples living together, 8.7% had a female householder with no husband present, 3.6% had a male householder with no wife present, and 42.4% were non-families. 37.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 15.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.17 and the average family size was 2.88.

The median age in the city was 42.2 years. 23% of residents were under the age of 18; 6.6% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 23.4% were from 25 to 44; 27.7% were from 45 to 64; and 19.4% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 50.1% male and 49.9% female.

2000 census

As of the census[4] of 2000, there were 3,900 people, 1,718 households, and 1,042 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,104.8 people per square mile (426.6/km²). There were 1,842 housing units at an average density of 521.8 per square mile (201.5/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 96.46% White, 0.10% African American, 0.82% Native American, 0.05% Asian, 0.54% from other races, and 2.03% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.82% of the population.

There were 1,718 households out of which 26.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 48.8% were married couples living together, 8.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 39.3% were non-families. 35.3% of all households were made up of individuals and 16.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.21 and the average family size was 2.88.

In the city the population was spread out with 23.1% under the age of 18, 5.6% from 18 to 24, 22.6% from 25 to 44, 27.1% from 45 to 64, and 21.5% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 44 years. For every 100 females there were 93.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 89.4 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $29,392, and the median income for a family was $40,683. Males had a median income of $28,716 versus $19,688 for females. The per capita income for the city was $19,054. About 6.7% of families and 10.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 7.0% of those under age 18 and 12.4% of those age 65 or over.

Government and infrastructure

The Wyoming Department of Health Veteran's Home of Wyoming, an assisted living facility for veterans and their dependents, is located in Buffalo.[10][11] The facility was operated by the Wyoming Board of Charities and Reform until that agency was dissolved as a result of a state constitutional amendment passed in November 1990.[12] Buffalo also has an airport named Johnson County Airport/KBYG.


Public education in the city of Buffalo is provided by Johnson County School District #1. Schools serving the city include Meadowlark Elementary School (grades K-2) Cloud Peak Elementary School (grades 3–5), Clear Creek Middle School (grades 6–8), and Buffalo High School (grades 9–12). Buffalo High School was in the national news spot light after the (former) head football coach, who is the schools guidance councilor, distributed an offensive "hurt feelings report" in November 2011. This attention brought several heated school board meetings and eventually lead to the resignation of Lynch as the head football coach.[13][14]

Area media


The Mini Publications Center is a Wyoming non-profit and registered [15] dedicated to helping regional community and small businesses grow and prosper through free and low cost community services using both print and online media journalism focused on the needs of rural communities. MPC runs an internet café, has a local gallery in the café, and is starting its 14th year publishing a free local community newspaper, The Mini, published twice a week. An online version,, expands to include the whole Big Horn Mountains region of north central Wyoming. MPC runs the as a rural community news site, as well as an educational website, instructing how to write about the arts, their community and small business advice. The MPC is also working to create a community learning or community college course certification in running a rural community news service and for developing citizen journalists of all ages and backgrounds. They adhere to the best principles of citizen journalism for rural communities.

The Buffalo Bulletin has served as the newspaper of record in Johnson County since 1884.[16] The paper is published once a week on Thursdays. It has been family owned and operated for three generations. Robb Hicks, the current owner and publisher of the paper, purchased the Bulletin from his father Jim Hicks in 1996. Hicks owns newspapers across Wyoming, Montana, South Dakota, Nebraska, Colorado, Idaho and Washington.[16]



Buffalo is located near the northern terminus of Interstate 25, where it joins with Interstate 90.


Buffalo experiences a semi-arid climate (Köppen BSk) with cold, dry winters and hot, wetter summers.
Climate data for Buffalo
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °F (°C) 66
Average high °F (°C) 33.0
Average low °F (°C) 7.3
Record low °F (°C) −36
Average precipitation inches (mm) 0.45
Source #1: NOAA (normals, 1971–2000) [17]
Source #2: The Weather Channel (Records) [18]

Notable people

Jim Gatchell Memorial Museum in Buffalo, Wy.
  • Mark Gordon, businessman and rancher from Buffalo and Wyoming state treasurer
  • Frank E. Lucas, Governor of Wyoming
  • Mathew Pitsch, Republican member of the Arkansas House of Representatives for Fort Smith since 2015; Buffalo native[19]
  • Constantine Scollen the famous missionary was resident priest from 1893 to 1894.
  • Jim Gatchell Buffalo pharmacist who began the town museum in 1900.[20]
  • Willard Eder, Captain USN, WWII Fighter Ace born in Buffalo, Wyoming on September 27th, 1916. Willard scored 6.5 aerial victories in the Navy during WWII. He flew with VF-3 and VF-2 aboard the USS Saratoga and Lexington during the Battle of Coral Sea and received the Navy Cross. He joined VGF-29 later in 1942 during invasion of North Africa aboard the USS Santee. Captain Eder flew with re-designated VF-29 for the balance of the war. He died on January 8, 2009 in Coronado, California.

See also


  1. ^ a b
  2. ^ a b
  3. ^
  4. ^ a b
  5. ^
  6. ^
  7. ^ Coal Bed Methane: Following busy year, Wyoming tries to cope with coalbed growing pains, Billings Gazette, January 7, 2004
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^ "Veterans' Home of Wyoming." Wyoming Department of Health. Retrieved on December 12, 2010. "Veterans’ Home of Wyoming 700 Veterans’ Lane Buffalo, WY 82834-9402."
  11. ^ "Buffalo city, Wyoming." U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved on December 12, 2010.
  12. ^ "About the Department of Corrections." Wyoming Department of Corrections. Retrieved on August 22, 2010.
  13. ^
  14. ^
  15. ^
  16. ^ a b Buffalo Bulletin Employee Handbook
  17. ^
  18. ^
  19. ^
  20. ^

External links

  • Chamber of Commerce website
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