Lusk Photos

From Wyoming Tales and Trails

Continued from previous page, this page: Lost Springs, Jireh, Shawnee.



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Keeline, 1915

To the west of Manville, lies Keeline. Keeline was platted by A.A. Spaugh. Like Lusk and Manville, it received its start when the Railroad came through in 1886 and was named by Spaugh after George A. Keeline whose ranch was further to the north. George A. Keeline, originally ran cattle in Colorado in the 1870's before he moved to Wyoming. The Keeline Ranch was headquartered in the Thunder Basin, further to the north.


Thrashing near Keeline, undated.

As indicated by the next photo, little remains of Keeline.


Keeline, 2005. Photo by Geoff Dobson.


Road sign, Lost Springs, 2005. Photo by Geoff Dobson.

To the west of Keeline, in Converse County, lies the smallest incorporated municipality in the United States, Lost Springs, population 1, 4, or 5, depending on who is doing the counting. The 2000 census and the road sign only reflect 1, the mayor.


Railroad Bridge over Lost Creek, Lost Springs, 1911.

It is contended, however, that the census missed the three councilmen. At one time, the town had a population of about 150 and served as a shipping point for the Lost Springs Coal Company.


Pumping Station, Lost Creek Coal Company, Lost Springs, Approx. 1910.

With the end of the Lance Creek oil boom, the population of Lost Springs declined.


Lost Springs, looking south, 2005. Photo by Geoff Dobson.

Today, the town consists of the Town Hall, on the left in the above photo; an antique store located in the old bank building, further down the street on the left; a saloon on the right, the "Lost Bar," open on major holidays and during hunting season; an outhouse; the old jail (not occupied during the past 40 years); and several other buildings in varying states of decrepitude. The coal train in the distance was over a mile long and had two locomotive in the front and a pusher at the end.


Lost Springs, looking north, 2005. Photo by Geoff Dobson.

The two story building on the left is the Lost Bar. Behind it are several trailer houses. On the right is the post office, antigue store, and the Town Hall. As a word of explanation, Wyoming provides revenue sharing to its municipalities. Thus, Lost Springs receives funding from the state which has paved its main street and helps to pay for the garbage service. The town was allegedly named by railroad workers who were unable to find a spring shown on their maps.


Jireh College, approx. 1910/

Between Manville and Keeline are the remants of Jireh College. The boys' dorm was on the top floor, girls' dorm and house mother's quarters were on the second floor, and the dining room and kitchen were in the basement. Tuition was $65.00 including room and board. The College was a small school affiliated with the Christian Church, now a part of of the United Church of Christ. It offered four years of high school and a two-year junior college. The town of Jireh at one time had two banks, a lumber yard, post office, store, express office, three general stores, blacksmith and newspaper. Additionally, a dry farming experimental farm grew sugar beets, wheat, potatoes, and alfalfa. The college was established in 1908 and closed its doors in 1920 after the Church withdrew financial support.


The Remnants of Jireh College, 2005. Photo by Geoff Dobson.

Jireh took its name from the place where Abraham was about to offer his son up as a sacrifice to Jehovah. See Genesis 22:

11. And the angel of the LORD called unto him out of heaven, and said, Abraham, Abraham: and he said, Here am I.
12. And he said, Lay not thine hand upon the lad, neither do thou any thing unto him: for now I know that thou fearest God, seeing thou hast not withheld thy son, thine only son from me.
13. And Abraham lifted up his eyes, and looked, and behold behind him a ram caught in a thicket by his horns: and Abraham went and took the ram, and offered him up for a burnt offering in the stead of his son.
14. And Abraham called the name of that place Jehovah-jireh: as it is said to this day, In the mount of the LORD it shall be seen.

"Jehovah-jireh" means Jehovah will see; that is, Jehovah will provide.

Further to the west is Shawnee.


Shawnee School, 2001, photo by Geoff Dobson

Shawnee was originally a shipping point for the Onyon Coal Mine located about 3 1/2 miles to the northeast along an old railroad grade. The Shawnee Coal Co., was a subsidiary of the railroad.

Next Page: Soddies and Dugouts.