The Wild West in England

By William F. Cody; Frank Christianson | Go to book overview

AN AMBITIOUS BUT HAZARDOUS
UNDERTAKING

The immortal bard has well said, “ambition grows with what it feeds on.”17 So with Salsbury and I, our unexampled success throughout America with the Wild West show excited our ambition to conquer other nations than our own. Though the idea of transplanting our exhibition, for a time, to England had frequently occurred to us, the importance of such an undertaking was enlarged and brought us to a more favorable consideration of the project by repeated suggestions from prominent persons of America,18 and particularly by urgent invitations extended by distinguished Englishmen. While inclined to the enterprise we gave much thought to the enormous expense involved in such a step and might not have decided so soon to try the rather hazardous experiment but for an opportunity that promised to largely increase our chances of success.

Several leading gentlemen of the United States conceived the idea of holding an American Exhibition in the heart of London19 and to this end a company was organized that pushed the project to a successful issue, aided as they were by several prominent residents of the English capital. When the enterprise had progressed so far as to give flattering promise of an opening at the time fixed upon, a proposition was made to Mr. Salsbury and myself,

-15-

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The Wild West in England
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Illustrations vii
  • Series Editor’s Preface xi
  • Editor’s Introduction xiii
  • Acknowledgments xxxvii
  • A Note on the Text xxxix
  • The Wild West in England xliii
  • List of Scenes 1
  • The Wild West in England 3
  • Nate Salsbury Joins Me as a Partner 5
  • A Bigger Show Put on the Road 10
  • The Show Is Dumped into the Mississippi 12
  • A Season in New York 14
  • An Ambitious but Hazardous Undertaking 15
  • Seeking New Worlds to Conquer 18
  • The Indians’ Fears Are Excited 20
  • “Off Gravesend” 23
  • Some Anxious Reflections 25
  • Our Reception in England 27
  • First Impressions of London 28
  • Preparing the Exhibition Grounds 30
  • Steaming Up the Thames 32
  • Establishing Our Camp— a Queer Scene 34
  • American Methods of Doing Business Excite Favorable Surprise 36
  • Helpful Influence from Distinguished Persons 43
  • Visit of Mr. Gladstone—Private View by the Grand Old Man 53
  • A Hard-Worked Lion of the Season 56
  • Visit of the Prince and Princess of Wales 59
  • A Private Entertainment for the Prince of Wales 61
  • Our Opening Performance 67
  • Interest without Bloody Accessories 72
  • Visit of Queen Victoria 74
  • Her Majesty Salutes the American Flag 76
  • Presented to the Queen 78
  • Statesmen at the Wild West 80
  • A Rib-Roast Breakfast, a la Indian, to Gen. Cameron 82
  • The Prince of Wales and His Royal Flush 85
  • The Prince Presents Me with a Diamond Pin 88
  • The Princess Rides in the Deadwood Coach 90
  • Close of the London Season 93
  • Our Tour in “The Provinces” 96
  • A Visit to Italy 98
  • The Crowd at Our Opening Performance 108
  • Presented with a Rifle 111
  • English Love of Sport Illustrated 118
  • Honored by the Mayor of Salford 120
  • A Magnificent Ovation 122
  • A Race for $2,5Oo 124
  • An Enthusiastic Farewell 126
  • A Pathetic Incident at Sea 127
  • Our Arrival in New York Harbor 128
  • Appendix 1- Story of the Wild West 135
  • Appendix 2- Photographs, 1885–1887 145
  • Appendix 3- Promotion, Reception, and the Popular Press 169
  • Notes 191
  • Selected Bibliography 203
  • Index 205
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