Diane McGinley pushes a massive vault door in the basement of the former Wyoming National Bank building recently. The vault door has been disabled for safety but will be preserved. (Dan Cepeda, Oil City News)
CASPER, Wyo. — The former Wyoming National Bank building in central Casper has been a distinctive landmark since it first opened in 1964.
Designed by acclaimed modernist architect Charles Deaton, the building added a space-age excitement to the banking and business community at the time.
The Wyoming National Bank was eventually absorbed by larger financial conglomerates, and the building later operated under the Wells Fargo brand for decades.
It has recently undergone a near-complete rehabilitation by current local owners Joseph and Diane McGinley, and is the home of their companies as well as a new events space.
The renovation was overseen and designed by McGinley Companies Director of Operations Diane McGinley, who set out to preserve as much of Deaton’s design intentions as possible.
Also preserved are the odd and mundane aspects of the banking industry, which are still hidden in the long basement tunnels under the stunning building.
There, employees would sort mail, count money in a massive vault, and climb into outdoor teller kiosks shaped like petals. Those curious buildings were unfortunately demolished in the 1970s and replaced with a more conventional drive-up structure, but remnants of their access points still exist. Also downstairs are hundreds of shiny safe deposit boxes in wood-paneled rooms that feel straight out of a 1970s heist movie.