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Week 3 Question: "What was the name of the first sternwheeler passenger boat on the Green River with service to Big Piney?" Winner was: Bonnie Whitley, Boulder, correct answer: "Sunbeam"

Schwan's Sublette County History Contest
Week 3 Clues Page (March 1-March 8, 2016)

(Last day to enter guesses for this question is Tuesday, March 8, 2016, at noon.)
KPIN Radio ad for Week 3
(2.64MB mp3 audio file)

Week 3 Question:
"What was the name of the first sternwheeler passenger boat on the Green River with service to Big Piney?"
n: Prize: Pork Tenderloin Filet Wrapped with Applewood Smoked Bacon

Answer: "Sunbeam"
Bonnie Whitley, Boulder, Wyoming

In June 1908, four men: J.F. Moerke, Frank Briggs, M.C. Peterson and C.W. Johnson, the owners of the amusement park on Island Park on the Green River at Green River, Wyoming, purchased two excursion boats to be used as pleasure boats for tourist rides on the Green River. The boats were the “Sunbeam” and the “Teddy R.” These were stern-wheeler, gasoline propelled motor launches. The boats were seven feet wide and twenty five feet in length and seated twenty adults. The "Sunbeam" carried pleasure seekers as far down the river as Buckboard and up the river as far as Big Piney. The island today is called Expedition Island, a 7-acre community park that marks the area where Major John Wesley Powell and Vitaly Develvis started an expedition down the Green River and Colorado River in 1871. The park is also believed to mark where Major Powell started a similar expedition down the two rivers in 1869. The local Green River Historic Preservation Commission has placed interpretive signs along a walking trail on the island, including two signs that specifically talk about the sternwheelers that were used on the Green River in the early 1900s. One of the signs shows a picture of the early Sunbeam.

An article in the June 24, 1908 Pinedale Roundup entitled, “Steamboats to Run up Green River” says “We understand that one boat is now being built in Green River City to ply between that city and the mouth of Boulder. This means that navigation of the Newfork is also contemplated as Boulder Creek is a tributary to that stream. These boats will carry about a foot of water, and will be easily handled. Gasoline launches are also being purchased and put on the Green river in the vicinity of the city of that name. It will not be long before the inhabitants of Pinedale put in most their time down on the levee waiting for the boats to come in. All aboard for Green River City and all points South.”

The Green River Star reported the Sunbeam made a trip upriver to Big Piney in July 1908. The June 11, 1909 Green River Star has an article reporting that “the boat of Johnson and Moerke was put in the river Sunday, and in a few days will be in shape to carry passengers. The boat has been remodeled and looks good.” It appears that it may have been at that time the Sunbeam was back in Green River and refitted from a stern-wheeler to a propeller-propulsion boat. On its last river trip upriver sometime around July 1909, the "Sunbeam" sheared its propeller at Big Piney and was disabled. It was reportedly left there at Big Piney.

In August 1909, the Pinedale Roundup reported that W.S. Peck purchased the Sunbeam for a reported consideration of $1,000. The boat was hauled overland to Fremont Lake to be used. It was later reported that Peck didn’t buy the boat, but instead bought interest in a firm called the “Fremont Boat Club.” In August, 1909, the Pinedale Roundup reported the company planned on making a number of improvements to the boat, including equipping it with a full cabin, and making it a “very comfortable, roomy and seaworthy cruiser, and the construction of a barge for transporting horses and pack outfits to the head of the lake. In consequence of these improvements they will not commence active operations until Oct. 5.” Sometime in this period, the Sunbeam was repaired and fitted with a 12 horse power engine. In another article in the August 1909 Pinedale Roundup reported that “Mr. Peck has been busy the past week building a walk and landing out over the water, and intends building a boat house soon.” Through June 2011 through December 2012, the Sunbeam was operational and there were regular display ads in the Pinedale Roundup advertising boat rides on Fremont Lake on the “Sunbeam” carrying 16 passengers making regular trips on Fremont Lake to Camp Headquarters every Sunday. The excursions were headquartered at Faler Hotel, Pinedale with V. E. Faler, Proprietor. Party trips 6 or less in party - $10. Special rates for more than 6 in a party. July 1912 was the last we could find references to the Sunbeam. We were unable to find any photos of the remodeled Sunbeam as it was used on Fremont Lake, and could not find further references to the Sunbeam after 1912.


Steamships on the Green River     August 13 1908 Green River Star   

 Nov. 30, 1911 Pinedale Roundup ad for the Sunbeam


Pork Tenderloin Filet Wrapped with Applewood Smoked BaconWeek 3 Clues

1. Sternwheelers and sidewheelers were used as riverboats in the United States in the late 1800s into the early 1900s. Sternwheelers have the paddles in the back of the vessel.

2. The paddlewheeler or steamship the Comet made its maiden voyage from Green River, Wyoming south to Linwood, Utah on July 4, 1908. The purpose of the steamship was to carry freight and passengers to ranches along the Green River to Linwood at the confluence with the Henry’s Fork. The launching was the major event of the year combined with the Fourth of July celebration. It represented a new form of transportation on the upper Green River—the use of power other than oars. The Comet was the flagship of the newly organized Green River Navigation Company.

3. Digital copies of many early editions of Wyoming newspapers prior to 1924 are available to read online at the Wyoming Newspapers project. It includes early newspapers for towns along the Green River in Wyoming. (Big Piney Examiner 1912-1921, Kemmerer Camera 1901-1921, Kemmerer Republican 1914-1920, Green River Frontier Index 1868, Green River Advertiser 1893, Green River Star 1885-1924, Green River Sun 1917, Rocky Mountain Courier 1878, Sweetwater Gazette 1885 & 1887, Wyoming Star 1901-1905, Wyoming Trails 1957 & 1958, and others.) It can be browsed by city, county, year, all titles, and county map. It also has a handy search feature to make finding information easier, The historic newspaper archive website can be found here: More recent papers are not included in this archive due to still having copyright restrictions in effect.

4. A history of Big Piney was written by Ann Chambers Noble and can be found on the website here:

5. The first official post office for Big Piney was begun in 1886 by Daniel Budd. The first schoolhouse was built in 1887, The town was incorporated on July 5, 1913. It had a school, church, store, hotel, bar, bank, newspaper and telephone service.

6. The newspaper for the Big Piney area was called the Big Piney Examiner. It published weekly from 1911 to 1968, starting on Thursday, Sept. 7, 1911. To our knowledge, the papers from the first year have been lost. Copies are now only available from the 41st edition on, as of June 20, 1912. Their second year began on Thursday, Sept. 5, 1912.

7. Judi Myers created an index to the Big Piney Examiner papers from 1912 to 1926. Her index can be found here:

8. An index to the Pinedale Roundup newspaper was compiled over a 20-year period by Judi Myers for the years 1904-1969 & 1980-1999. This index uses keyword phrases for the highlights she found in each edition of the papers in those years. Ann Noble compiled an index for the years 1970-1979. Jane Warinner typed the original manuscripts in four separate volumes. The written Pinedale Roundup Index book is still available today and can be purchased at Office Outlet in Pinedale. Later, the printed volumes were scanned in order to create a searchable index for online use. This searchable Index to the Pinedale Roundup, 1904-1999, can be found here:

9. The town of Marbleton, just 1 mile away from Big Piney, was created in late 1913 by Charles Budd, the oldest son of Big Piney founder Daniel B. Budd, to try to move Big Piney to higher ground and out of the boggy land of the Piney Creeks. Marbleton was incorporated in 1914. Over the years, efforts to merge the two towns have failed and each maintains their own town government, although share many other services.

10. Island Park was an early amusement park along the Green River at Green River, Wyoming. It became an attraction for amusement seekers and water enthusiasts. This island is now known as Expedition Island Park, a 7.1 acre community park located at 475 South Second East Street. It is a great family gathering spot with a play area and numerous recreational opportunities. This park has multiple picnic areas and grills, playground, a large open space for relaxation and games, access to the Greenbelt Pathway, and an interpretive nature trail with several interesting and informative interpretive signs put in by the Green River Historic Preservation Commission. More info

10. The custom-built paddlewheeler, the Wind River Queen set sail in the summer of 2004 on Half Moon Lake for a fun and unique dining experience. A labor of love of employees of Half Moon Lake Resort near Pinedale, the Wind River Queen set sail for dinner guests and private reservations. "We will start running June, July and August of this summer" explained Aaron Gesch, Manager of Half Moon Lake Resort. "This is the only operating paddlewheeler in Wyoming."

More useful links:
Big Piney and Marbleton,, by Ann Chambers Noble

Wind River Queen sets sail this summer Pinedale Online! May 19, 2004

Email your answer to
or call Jean-Francois at 307-360-FOOD (3663)


The "Wind River Queen" on Half Moon Lake in 2004. Photos courtesy Half Moon Resort.


Official Rules:
1. Eligibility: NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER. Contest participants must be residents of Sublette County, Wyoming; be at least 18 years of age, and a U.S. citizen to win. Limit one weekly prize per person and household. All past winners are eligible to enter to win the Grand Prize. There are no substitutions allowed on prize winnings. No one directly involved in the creation of the contest or history questions, or their families or household members, are eligible to win any of the contest prizes.

2. Contest Period: The contest runs for six weeks, from Wednesday, February 17, 2016 and ending on Tuesday, March 29, 2016.

3. Sponsors: Schwan’s, Pinedale Online, KPIN 101.1FM Radio. Contacts for more information are:
Schwan’s Home Service of Rock Springs, phone: 307-360-FOOD (3663),, 213 Industrial Ave, Rock Springs, WY 82901
Pinedale Online: Dawn Ballou, Editor, 307-360-7689,
PO Box 2250, Pinedale, WY 82941
KPIN 101.1FM Radio: Bob Rule, 307-367-2000,
PO Box 2000, Pinedale, WY 82941

4. To Enter: Each week’s history question will be posted on Pinedale Online on the Local page and at, as well as announced on KPIN 101.1 FM Radio. To enter a guess to answer the week’s history question, send an email with your answer to or call 307-360-FOOD (3663) by Noon on the Tuesday ending that week’s contest. Include your name, email address, mailing address, and a contact phone number so the winner can be notified. All entries become the property of Schwan’s and will not be returned. Winners names will be posted on Pinedale Online at and announced on KPIN 101.1 FM Radio on the Wednesday following that week’s question. The next week’s new history question will also be posted and announced on Wednesday.

5. Prize Drawing: On or about Tuesday evening, contest administrators will review the entries and determine which one was the first to coming closest to correctly answering the question. There will be only one prize awarded to one winner each week. Winner’s name will be posted on the Pinedale Online website and announced on KPIN 101.1FM Radio on the Wednesday ending the week of that contest question. If the contest sponsor cannot contact the prize winner within 3 days of announcement of the winner, the contest sponsors may select an alternate winner from the next closest correct answer entries that can be contacted to claim that week’s prize. Schwan’s Home Service of Rock Springs reserves the right to be ultimate decider of each week’s contest winner and their decision is final. Prizes will be delivered by Schwan’s to the winner within Sublette County, Wyoming by prior arrangement during the next week’s Schwan’s regular Sublette County route delivery cycle. By accepting prize, winner releases all participating sponsors from any liability as a result of this prize. Schwan's will pay the Wyoming State sales tax of the winning prizes for the prize winners.

6. Privacy: Information gained from contest entrants is subject to Schwan’s privacy policy. Names of winners will be posted online and announced over KPIN Radio, but email addresses, phone numbers and physical addresses will not be released. Schwan’s will use address information to make deliveries of prizes to winners. Schwan’s may ask contest entrants if they would like a Schwan’s catalog and/or more information about the company’s food products.

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Pinedale Online!


KPIN 101.1 FM Radio
KPIN 101.1 FM Radio


Big Piney
Sublette County, Wyoming



Handbreaded Fantail Shrimp
Prize for Week 1: Hand Breaded Fantail Shrimp

WEEK 1 History Question:S
"How many Wyoming livestock brands were registered by Sublette County residents as of 2015?"
Winner: Tara Holmes, Daniel, WY Guess: 760
(Week 1 Clues)
Week 1 KPIN 101.1FM Radio announcement (3.02MB mp3)
Answer: 821, according to the Wyoming Livestock Board 2015 Brand Book

3 Schwan's  Pizzas
Prize for Week 2: 3 Pizzas

WEEK 2 History Question:S
"When was the first reported sighting of a moose in Pinedale?"
Winner: Sandy Kawa, Pinedale, WY Guess: May 25, 1916.
Week 2 KPIN 101.1FM Radio announcement (2.5MB mp3)
Answer: A lone cow moose was seen on Tuesday, May 23, 1916, as reported in the Thursday, May 25, 1916 edition of the Pinedale Roundup newspaper.

Pork Tenderloin Filet Wrapped with Applewood Smoked Bacon
Prize for Week 3: Pork Tenderloin Filet Wrapped with Applewood Smoked Bacon

WEEK 3 History Question:S
"What was the name of the first sternwheeler passenger boat on the Green River with service to Big Piney?"
KPIN Radio ad for Week 3
(2.64MB mp3 audio file)

Winner: Bonnie Whitley, Boulder
Guess: "Sunbeam"
Correct Answer: "Sunbeam"

A selection of three 1/2 gallon ice cream tubs
Prize for Week 4: A selection of three 1/2 gallon ice cream tubs

WEEK 4 History Question:S
"Where is 'Lake Beautiful' in Sublette County?"

KPIN Radio ad for Week 4

(2.47MB mp3 audio file)

Winner: Kenna Tanner, Pinedale
Answer: New Fork Lake
(Lac d'Amalia)

Schwan's Red Velvet & Cheesecake
Prize for Week 5: Red Velvet & Cheesecake

WEEK 5 History Question & Clues:
"What was 'Serious Sawbuck'?"

KPIN Radio ad for Week 5
(1.23MB mp3 audio file)

Winner: No one correctly answered the question this week. The prize will roll over and be given away as one of two prizes for next week.
Answer: Slang for "Sears & Roebuck"

Grand Prizw Week 6: Dinner for Two - Your choice of appetizer, main course and dessert up to $50 value!
Grand Prize Week 6: Dinner for Two - Your choice of appetizer, main course and dessert up to $50 value!

Week 6 Clues Page

Week 6 Questions:
1. "What is the oldest geographic feature place name in Sublette County still in use today?" Answer: Green River
2. "What was the first constructed road in the Upper Green River Valley?"
Answer: Lander Trail/Cut-Off Road

Winner: Lisa Williams, Cora, Wyoming

KPIN Radio ad for Week 6
(1.45MB mp3 audio file)

Jean-Francois Lefebvre, Schwan's delivery driver for the Pinedale area

Meet Jean-Francois Lefebvre, your friendly Pinedale area delivery driver for Schwan's. Orders are placed online via Jean-Francois comes up to Pinedale from the Rock Springs Schwan's distribution center several days a week to deliver orders. He can be reached at 307-360-FOOD (3663).

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Return to Main Contest Page | Email your answer to or call 307-360-FOOD (3663)