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Big Horn

During the 1890s, new ideas of issuing and requiring licenses for hunting were being tried in several states. Wyoming’s first hunting license was established around 1895.

  • This license had tear-off coupons attached for each of the game animals to be hunted.
    • The coupons were to be removed and mailed to the state game warden.
    • Once the coupon was used, no more of that species could be hunted.
  • The license cost $1.00 for residents of the state and $20.00 for nonresidents. By 1908, the fees had increased to $2.00 for residents and $50.00 for nonresidents. Residents were only required to have a license if they hunted outside their home counties.
  • The enactment of hunting license laws served two major purposes.
    • It allowed for the protection of game by controlling hunting.
    • It served as a mechanism for raising revenue for use in the management of the state’s wildlife.
  • Wyoming’s idea of licensing hunters was catching on across the country. Two-thirds of the states now required hunters to purchase licenses, and many of the older states had just recently copied the Wyoming system.

Licenses for fishing were still not required at the time the hunting license laws were enacted. The first fishing license bill was proposed in 1911 but was not passed until 1919.