1849 - United States buys Fort Laramie

In 1849, the United States took over the dilapidated Fort William trading post and renamed Fort Laramie. Painting by Alfred Jacob Miller

         First commanded by Major Winslow Sanderson, the government purchased the fort from the American Fur Company for $4,000. 

         During its first incarnation, the fort was a vital outpost of commerce during the era of the fur men, and it became a central landmark to nomadic tribes who traded furs with white men.

         As a military post, Fort Laramie would host a number of important treaty councils between federal treaty commissioners and western tribes.