300 Main Street
The M.N. Baldwin Company -Major Noyes Baldwin and his wife, Josephine Wright Baldwin, were some of the earliest settlers in the Lander Valley. Before establishing the dry good store in Lander, he had a trading post near Hudson, Wyoming, a log trading post on Baldwin Creek, and a store in South Pass.
The original 1884 store was built of native stone and stocked just about anything that pioneer family would need. The native stone can still be seen on the back portion of the building facing Third Street. A policy in its earliest years was giving ranchers and farmers a line of credit for a whole year. They would come in and pay when their livestock or crops sold. The store had barrels of whiskey and it became a tradition that when a rancher or farmer “paid up,” he would get a flask of free whiskey and the wife would be given some fabric.
It was the oldest store in the City, and possibly the Rocky Mountain Region, growing from a frontier trading post into a modern retail store. It is truly amazing that the store was under continuous ownership and management of one family. The building was expanded in 1912, a second story was added in 1920, and there was a major remodel in 1930. It didn’t stop there, as in 1958 the grocery portion and butcher shop closed, in 1965 and 1968 there were more remodels and updates to the building.