Jan 23, 2009

How the West was Spun - Buffalo Bill Cody’s Wild West Show

(Historynet) - When fabled bison hunter William “Buffalo Bill” Cody first staged his Wild West show in 1883, he needed more than heroic cowboys, villainous Indians, teeming horses and roaming buffalo to transform it from a circus into a sensation. He needed star power. And there was one man who guaranteed to provide it: the Sioux chief widely blamed for the uprising that overwhelmed George Armstrong Custer’s 7th Cavalry at the Battle of Little Bighorn only a decade earlier. “I am going to try hard to get old Sitting Bull,” Cody said. “If we can manage to get him our ever lasting fortune is made.” Continued

Top Photo: Sitting Bull, Dakota Chief, and William Cody, both holding rifle. (Library of Congress) Bottom Photo: William Frederick "Buffalo Bill" Cody and four Native American men sit in a gondola while touring in Venice, Italy. Long Bear sits to the right of Cody wearing a feather headdress. Chief American Horse, also wearing a feather headress, sits on the ledge of the gondola. (Library of Congress)