Hot Springs County Museum & Cultural Center - Thermopolis

Nov 1, 2013

When the new town of Thermopolis was founded in its present site in 1897, Mr. Skinner built an 18' x 32' cabin close to the corner of 5th and Arapahoe. Mr. Skinner had become a popular figure in town and his saloon was usually bustling. A sign on the front of the building read "free drinks served at all hours" but, anyone inquiring about it soon learned that the free drinks came from a well by the front door. His business was so profitable that he had a new two story building constructed, that covered 1 1/2 lots. Beside his saloon the building housed a cafe, barbershop and hotel. Mr. Skinner named his establishment the Hole-In-The-Wall Saloon after the hideout which was located east of town and used by the "Wild Bunch Outlaws" who were among his patrons and friends. The bar was handcrafted in Ireland and shipped to Thermopolis by steamship, train, and finally mule drawn wagon. The notorious bar now rests in the Hot Springs County Museum and Cultural Center at 700 Broadway St.

This is one of the big attractions to the museum. The Hot Springs County Museum also has one of the largest arrowhead collections in the area on display. The museum has a display of an old town street, with a boardwalk, dentist office, store, bank, barbershop and more.

The present Hot Springs County Museum is the outgrowth of the Hot Springs County Pioneer Association Museum, which first opened its doors on July 4, 1941. Founded to preserve the history of the region's settlers, the Museum has gathered a large collection of artifacts used in everyday life in Wyoming, with the majority of items dating from the 1880s through the 1930s.

The Museum Complex consists of two full floors of exhibits in the main Museum building, and five additional structures on the Museum grounds.

The Cultural Center Auditorium is available for exhibitions, meetings, theatrical productions, art shows, etc. The cultural center auditorium can seat 80-90 people, has a stage, dressing rooms and sound system. Folding chairs, tables and limited kitchen facilities are also available. To reserve the auditorium or other museum facilities, phone the Hot Springs County Museum and Cultural Center at (307) 864-5183 or email

Courtesy of

Credit Hot Springs County Museum & Cultural Center