W F Cody
Jon Burch Photography
Photograph - Digital Capture/film
So there I was, leading a class at Kansas State University-College of Technology in Salina, Kansas on a geology field trip in the hills around Ellsworth, Kansas. We were looking for an area known as the "Palmer Caves" when I stumbled upon an original name carving by none other than Buffalo Bill Cody. And, always having my camera handy...
William Frederick "Buffalo Bill" Cody was an American soldier, bison hunter and showman. He was born in Le Claire, in Iowa Territory but lived several years in Canada before his family moved to the Kansas Territory. After receiving the Medal of Honor in 1872 for service to the US Army as a scout, Buffalo Bill became one of the most colorful figures of the American Old West. Cody became famous for the shows he organized with cowboy themes, which he toured in Great Britain and Europe as well as the United States.
Cody got his nickname after the American Civil War when he had a contract to supply Kansas Pacific Railroad workers with buffalo meat. In 1867 through 1868, he earned the nickname by killing 4,280 American bison in eighteen months. Cody and William Comstock competed in a buffalo-shooting match over the exclusive right to use the name, which Cody won by killing 68 bison to Comstock's 48 kills.
Buffalo Bill Cody had documented service as a soldier during the Civil War and as Chief of Scouts for the Third Cavalry during the Plains Wars. He claimed to have had many jobs, including as a trapper, bullwhacker, "Fifty-Niner" in Colorado, a Pony Express rider in 1860, wagon master, stagecoach driver, and a hotel manager, but historians have had difficulty documenting them, and he may have fabricated some for publicity.
Cody became world famous for his Wild West shows, which toured in Great Britain and Europe. Audiences were enthusiastic about seeing a piece of the American West. The adventure story writer Emilio Salgari met Buffalo Bill in Italy, saw his show, and later featured him as a hero in some of his novels. - Wikki
The original image was made on 35 mm high speed Ektachrome film and was recently digitized.
Photograph copyright Jon Burch Photography
March 21st, 2013
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