In November 2014, archaeologists at Great Basin National Park unexpectedly stumbled upon a 132-year-old Winchester Model 1873 lever action rifle. Park employees found the rifle—exposed to sun, wind, snow, and rain—leaning against a tree among some junipers in the park. The cracked wood stock, now weathered to gray, and the brown rusted barrel blended into the colors of the old juniper tree in a remote rocky outcrop, keeping the rifle camouflaged for more than a century.
From Great Basin, the mysterious rifle traveled to the Buffalo Bill Center of the West where our Cody Firearms curatorial staff studied, authenticated, and conserved it. The question still lives on: How was the Winchester ’73 forgotten in the park? Tell us what you think happened!
- Short story must creatively answer the question: How was the Winchester ’73 forgotten in the Great Basin National Park?
- Maximum of 1,000 words: Judges won’t read a submission with more than 1,000 words
- Deadline for story submission is October 20, 2018. Judges cannot view stories submitted after midnight on this day.
- Submit stories to [email protected]
- Subject line of contest submission must be “Mystery Short Story Contest 2018.”
- Attach your story as a Word document.
- Include in your submission: how you wish us to contact you if you win the contest: your Facebook name, and/or phone number.
- Stories will be judged for creativity and readability (grammar, punctuation, and spelling).
- The first 100 participants will receive a Buffalo Bill Center of the West collector’s key chain.
1st Prize: Free day at the Buffalo Bill Center of the West for up to 4 visitors and the Centennial Edition of the Buffalo Bill Center of the West book to remember your visit!
2nd Prize: Wild West poster of your choice from the Museum Store and a limited edition poster, Buffalo Bill, the Flag-bearer.
3rd Prize: Wild West poster of your choice from the Museum Store