On Saturday, Oct. 1, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., the community is invited to celebrate the Sheridan VA’s 100th anniversary of health care and community partnerships. The free event will be held at the Sheridan VA Medical Center.
According to the news release “the Sheridan VA Medical Center has cared for Veterans for 100 years, a milestone that wouldn’t be possible without the community we serve them in.”
The fort itself and most of the buildings are older, they were built in 1899. A story on the history of Fort Mackenzie was featured on Sheridan Media on November 13, 2021.
In the early 1900s, congress began consolidating the forts and moving the soldiers into larger population centers. The Sheridan fort was closed with only a few soldiers left to maintain the buildings and grounds. Several attempts were made to repurposed it, including the idea of a military school, but none were really successful until after the first World War, when it became a Veteran’s Hospital.
The actual date of the opening of the hospital was in May of 1922, and the first patients came in on June 22. The public was invited to celebrate the new hospital.
From The Sheridan Enterprise June 1922 – Doctors and Dentists Guests at Opening. An invitation has been extended to the visiting doctors and dentists and their wives to attend the opening of the United States Veterans Hospital at Fort Mackenzie, June 22. Refreshments will be served in the dining room of the nurses’ home by the Ladies Auxiliary of the John Donald Garbutt Post No.7. The public is invited to attend the opening and inspect the buildings as guides will be ready to conduct any who wish to go through.
Today, the public is again invited to celebrate the VA Medical Center’s first 100 years. Events will include: Free food for enrolled Veterans: A fly fishing challenge with the local Project Healing Waters team; A remote control car challenge; Food from Curds of Wyoming; Coffee from The Columbian Guy Coffee Van; Pumpkin painting activity with VFW Roy Eaton Post 1560 and Auxiliary; Root beer floats from Sheridan’s AARP; Alpaca petting/feeding pen; Car shows with vehicles from the Model A & Pioneer Car Club of Sheridan and Johnson Counties, Karz Club of Sheridan and Bighorn Mountain Crawlers 4×4 Club; Educational activity by Rooted in Wyoming; Horse and buggy rides; Flu shots for enrolled Veterans and staff; “Door” prizes for Veterans; Casper Mobile Vet Center; Photo booth; Corn hole; Tie dye in the park; Fairy house building activity and historical information from Bozeman Trail Association
There will also be representatives/information from: Harrison-Haley-Heckman DAV Post 9 and John Donald Garbutt American Legion Post 7. More events may be added.