Four Years in Europe with Buffalo Bill

Four Years in Europe with Buffalo Bill

Four Years in Europe with Buffalo Bill

Four Years in Europe with Buffalo Bill

Synopsis

William F. Buffalo Bill Cody was the entertainment industry's first international celebrity, achieving worldwide stardom with his traveling Wild West show. For three decades he operated and appeared in various incarnations of the western world's greatest traveling attraction, enthralling audiences around the globe. When the show reached Europe it was a sensation, igniting Wild West fever by offering what purported to be a genuine experience of the American frontier. By any standard Charles Eldridge Griffin (1859 1914), manager of the Wild West's European tour, was a remarkable man. Known by the stage names of Monsieur F. Le Costro, Professor Griffin, and the Yankee Yogi, he was an author, comedian, conjurer, contortionist, dancer, fire-eater, hypnotist, illusionist, lecturer, magician, newspaper owner, publisher, sword swallower, and yogi. His account of life on the road with the Wild West show, published here for the first time since its release in 1908, opens a window on a vanished world. In addition to line drawings and photographs from the original book, Chris Dixon provides an introduction and annotations for historical context. Griffin's story of traveling with Buffalo Bill in Europe from 1903 to 1906 presents a fascinating picture of a quintessentially American character. At the same time it offers a vision of the nation on the verge of nationalism, imperialism, and an emerging global mass culture.

Excerpt

Four years ago the McCracken Research Library in Cody, Wyoming, set out to edit and publish the collected papers of William F. [Buffalo Bill] Cody. It seemed like an idea whose time had come; in fact, it seemed long overdue. William F. Cody was the most famous American of his time. As a cultural figure his influence was unparalleled. and yet, Cody's role in our national narrative is largely underappreciated. As Gretchen Adams, the senior editor of this documentary editing project, has stated, [The Papers of William F. Cody documents the life and times of not one but two men: William Cody and Buffalo Bill. When Cody died in 1917, his public persona so completely eclipsed the identity of the man who created it that they may have buried the body of William F. Cody, but the funeral itself was for Buffalo Bill.] Indeed the familiar Buffalo Bill is perhaps viewed today as a quaint character, if not caricature, whose image obscures the substantive William F. Cody. Because Cody is surrounded by so much myth and lore, it is often difficult to trace the very real contribution that he made to the development of the American West.

By publishing William F. Cody's own writings as well as contemporary accounts about him, such as this one by . . .

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.