News-Antique.com - Sep 15,2008 - Santa Fe, Sept. 15, 2008 -- Picture if you will, Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show. The year is 1902. The Star Spangled Banner is playing. The doors of the arena open and out gallops four horses lugging a stagecoach.
The Indians race in behind the coach and the chase is on around the showground. They fire their guns -- whooping and yelling as their war bonnets stream behind them.
Next Annie Oakley’s sharp shooting act comes out followed by a U.S. Artillery drill and Pony Express riders. Throw in the ten-gallon hats, lots of buckskin, gleaming spurs, and rodeo rough riders and you have three hours of action-packed Wild West drama.
The West had traveled east complete with Buffalo Bill prancing out on his white charger.
The effect was immediate and electric. Cody was a master at creating the Wild West of our imagination.
Half truth, half fiction, Buffalo Bill Cody loved playing the Western scout on stage. It was one place in life where happy endings were a guarantee and the applause -- it was so sweet.
“Buffalo Bill was one of the world’s great men. I don’t mean wise, but I do mean great. His heart was as big as his show tent;” said fatherless boy and American artist Dan Muller who Cody took in and raised.
Cody even talked Wild Bill Hickok into joining the troupe. Then there was cowboy-scout Texas Jack who was the first performer to introduce roping acts to the American stage.
In terms of Western collectibles, Buffalo Bill is big. Anything he owned or laid his hands on is going to command top dollar. Solid documentation to prove the connection is a must. Provenance is everything.
On June 5, Cowan’s in Cincinnati, Ohio, featured a selection of vintage Cody photos, cabinet cards, programs and letters in its Western and Historic Americana sale.
A cabinet card photo of Wild West Show cohort Annie Oakley with a single shot rifle in hand sold for $4,600.
Read the entire article at http://www.LiveAuctionTalk.com