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Edgar Wilson “Bill” Nye

Edgar Nye. (Who-When-What book, ca. 1900)

By 1890, the year of Wyoming Statehood, this clever and talented writer had become one of the most famous and beloved journalists in America. He was informing and entertaining the world with his columns that were published in Daily’s all across America. And Bill Nye penned his legendary prose while running his own small newspaper in Laramie, Wyoming.

William Edgar “Bill” Nye actually spent less than two decades in Wyoming, but that was long enough to establish himself as a writer that everyone was certainly familiar with. Bill Nye had a wonderful ability to spin his works, with a mix of sharp wit and a wry sense of humor. Nye came to Laramie in 1876, at age 26, and in 1881, Nye started up his own paper. He named his newspaper after an old gray mule that he once owned. Nye told the story of how no matter how hard he tried to get rid of the mule, the animal kept returning. The mule’s name was Boomerang, and Bill Nye’s newspaper became the Larmamie Boomerang. Of course, the Laramie Boomerang publishes to this day.

Bill Nye would become a lawyer, the postmaster, justice of the peace, and a judge in Laramie, but it was his tongue-in-cheek editorials, and humorous yarns of frontier life in Wyoming, that made him a famous national figure. Bill Nye left Wyoming in ill health, and would pass away in 1895, at age 45.

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