John F. Patterson founded Pinedale in 1904 after proposing the establishment of a town along Pine Creek in western Wyoming. Patterson offered to build and stock a general store if local ranchers Charles Petersen and Robert Graham would donate five acres each for the site. Petersen and Graham agreed to this plan, a surveyor was hired, and Pinedale – named after the post office on Petersen's ranch – was officially established. Free town lots were offered to early settlers, and Pinedale was incorporated in 1912, becoming the farthest incorporated town from a railroad, and later from a major highway, in the country. The community survived in fierce isolation, and the townspeople originally made their living supplying the ranchers, outfitters, and tie hacks. Ranching and tourism helped sustain Pinedale from the beginning, and in the 1990s, the community underwent a fundamental change with the introduction of natural-gas mining in the area. Pinedale residents continue to live and thrive on this harsh but beautiful land.
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