Green River, Wyoming

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Green River is a city in and the county seat of Sweetwater County, Wyoming, United States, in the southwestern part of the state.[3] The population was 11,808 at the 2000 census.

The city is known as being one of the first in the United States to ban door-to-door solicitation; see Green River Ordinance.[4]

The Mayor of Green River is Hank Castillion, who was elected in November 2006 and won re-election in 2010.



Green River was incorporated in 1868 in what was then the Dakota Territory. The city was the starting point from which John Wesley Powell started his famous expeditions of the Green River, the Colorado River, and the Grand Canyon in the late 1800s.[5] Green River was originally supposed to be the site of a division point for the Union Pacific Railroad, but when the railroad finally reached the point, officials were surprised to find that a city had already been established there. They moved the division point 12 miles (19 km) west to Bryan, Wyoming.[6]

At the time of its incorporation in 1868, Green River had about 2000 residents and permanent adobe buildings were being built. However, when the division point of the railroad was moved west, the city shrank to a mere 101 residents. Just when the city was on the verge of shriveling up, the Black Fork dried up during a drought and the railroad was forced to move the division point back to Green River. The town was officially incorporated under the new laws of Wyoming on May 5, 1891.


The Green River Basin contains the world's largest known deposit of trona ore. Soda ash mining from trona veins 900 and 1,600 feet (490 m) deep is a major industrial activity in the area, employing over 2000 persons at five mines. The mining operation is less expensive for production of soda ash in the United States than the synthetic Solvay process, which predominates in the rest of the world. The trona in Sweetwater County was created by an ancient body of water known as Lake Gosiute. Over time, the lake shrunk. With the loss of outflows, highly alkaline water (salt brine) began to evaporate, depositing the beds of trona.[7]

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