LANDER MERCANTILE - 1890
John Dwight Woodruff started his Lander Commercial Company business in the first block of Main Street in about 1888 in a large brick building owned by Eugene Amoretti, Sr. He didn’t remain at this location very long as he soon commenced work on his own brick building in the second block of Main Street. Woodruff was one of Lander’s earliest pioneers. He had several business ventures and was active in politics.
The building was finished just in time for the Wyoming Statehood Ball in November, 1890. The first floor of the building was for his mercantile business and the second floor was known as the “Woodruff Hall.” For the Statehood celebration most of Lander’s population managed to squeeze into the upstairs ballroom. For the many years, the Woodruff Hall was used for local dances and celebrations.
In 1890, he and his partner, W. A. Wallace, were open for business. He bought out Wallace in 1892. After operating the business for 12 years he sold the building to Lander Masonic Lodge.