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The Banditti of the Plains, or, the Triumph of the Nesters

On Friday, April 8, 1892, Ben Jones and Bill Walker rode down out of the Bighorn Mountains. They had been trapping for weeks. Ben Jones …

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The Draper Natural History Museum opening, June 2002—just what Al meant by “extraordinary” accomplishments by the Center of the West.

The Center of the West & All – Points West Online

Originally published in Points West magazine The Center of the West & Al By Marguerite House I walked into the Irma Hotel one Saturday morning …

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"Spring Thaw" by David Santillanes, Oil, 24 x 40 inches. Buffalo Bill Art Show & Sale, 2022. (detail)

41st Annual Buffalo Bill Art Show & Sale Announces Award Winners

We share this news release from our Buffalo Bill Art Show & Sale partners at the Cody Country Chamber of Commerce… On the morning preceding …

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Black-billed Magpies, Friends or Foes?

Black-billed Magpies seem to be birds that raise conflicting feelings among people. As a member of the Covidae family which includes ravens, crows, and jays, …

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Center offers free admission to youth from Park County, Wyoming

The Buffalo Bill Center of the West is launching a pilot program offering free admission for Park County, Wyoming, youth through age 17, beginning September …

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Barbed wire sample from the Buffalo Bill Museum collection. 1.69.1930.25

Shakespeare’s Musing at the Antique Barbed Wire Convention – Points West Online

Originally published in Points West magazineSummer 2016 Shakespeare’s Musing at the Antique Barbed Wire Conventiona.k.a. Fencing with Shakespearea.k.a. Bard learns barb By Kelli Grinich Ed. …

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Firearms in Pop Culture

Firearms have been a staple in pop culture since the late nineteenth century. Wild west shows gained popularity in the 1880s, with Buffalo Bill’s Wild …

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Great Great Grey Owl by Rebekah Childers

Great Grey Owl – Points West Online

Originally published in Points West magazineSummer 2020 How I Got That Shot: Great Grey Owl By Rebekah Childers One fall morning, I made a trip …

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The End of Summer

Well, summer is almost over, and I’ve reached the final chapter of my internship. My time as an intern has really…flown by! Maybe not like, …

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How to Create a Museum TikTok

The Buffalo Bill Center of the West has joined the trend of creating a TikTok page for their institution. Growing up just outside Cody, Wyoming, …

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Verne Stull's cartridge belt. 1990.14.1.3

Verne Stull: Secrecy and Security

Buried within the vaults of the Cody Firearms Museum here at the Buffalo Bill Center of the West is a revolver, holster, belt, and whistle …

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The Man Who Was Scalped

I was lucky enough to meet Gordon Barrows. He danced into my office one day. I’m not sure what the occasion was. It may have …

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Nitrate Negatives: Now That’s Explosive Content!

What are nitrate negatives?
Why are nitrate negatives handled with care in archival facilities?

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Explore Our Interactive Exhibits

A diverse collection of artifacts, galleries, and specimens are featured within the Buffalo Bill Center of the West. Visitors can gain an understanding of Buffalo …

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Grizzly Bear Foot

Articulation Madness with Grace

Where Has the Time Gone?! Sheesh, it’s already July! Summer is going by too fast. It’s gotten a lot hotter too, which I love because …

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“Tapis Magique (Magic Carpet),” 2003, Thomas D. Mangelsen, Fujiflex Crystal Archive Print, 39 x 100 inches.

A Life in the Wild – Points West Online

Originally published in Points West magazineSummer 2022 A Life in the Wild: Acclaimed Photographer Shares Favorite Shots By Mark Davis Ed. note: for Mangelsen’s own …

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Snap Pea & Radish Salad with Feta & Lemon Vinaigrette

Snap Pea & Radish Salad – Points West Online

Originally published in Points West magazineSpring 2020 Good Enough to Eat: Snap Pea & Radish Salad with Feta & Lemon Vinaigrette Recipe by Kyle Kleist, …

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The Buffalo Bill Memorial Association originally had this popular Bonheur painting in mind as the model for its equestrian memorial to its namesake. Rosa Bonheur (1822–1899), "Col. William F. Cody," 1889. Oil on canvas, 18.25 x 15.25 inches. Given in Memory of William R. Coe and Mai Rogers Coe. 8.66

Searching Through the Online Collections

Have you ever seen an object in the Buffalo Bill Center of the West and later wanted more information? Or forgot the name of a …

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Frank Tenney Johnson (1874–1939). "Cove in Yellowstone Park," 1938. Oil on canvas, 30 x 40 inches. Gift of Fred and Sara Machetanz. 2.82

The Draw of Cody – Points West Online

Originally published in Points West magazineWinter 2019 – 20 The Draw of Cody: The Role of Place in Helping Make Artists Great By Ruffin Prevost …

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Alex Martin #EducationStation

The Education Department in the Center of the West has on-boarded Alex Martin as the Indian Education for All (IEFA) intern this summer. Her role …

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Working with Museum Objects

Cassandra Leon: Registration Intern I have loved museum work since 2018, when I was first able to intern at a small university museum. I was …

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Spencer Benefiel, #CollectionInspection

The Cody Firearms Museum offers a wide variety of learning opportunities, says Spencer Benefiel, a curatorial intern. Spencer is responsible for records and label correction, …

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Nick DelDuca, #ExclusiveTourWithMe

Nick DelDuca, the Exclusive Tours intern this year, holds a BA in History from Montana State University, along with minors in Museum Studies and Religious …

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Danny Gonsowski, #FashionForConservation

Hailing from Phoenix, Arizona, Danny Gonsowski is interning with the conservation department at the Center of the West. He has earned a BA in Japanese …

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Cassandra Leon #RegistrationNation

Originally from Riverside, California, Cassandra Leon is interning with the registration department. She is currently working on an MA in art history and an art …

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Quinne Naegeli, #RecordsRestored

Quinne Naegeli, from Annapolis, Maryland, is currently a curatorial intern with the Cody Firearms Museum. She spends time indexing firearms, correcting gun records and exploring …

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Reading Room, McCracken Research Library, Buffalo Bill Center of the West, Cody, Wyoming, USA. (BBCW-MRL03)

Ailey Hall, #BuffaloBillDetective

Ailey Hall, originally from Houston, Texas, has earned a BA in English from Auburn University in Alabama and a MA in Romantic Victorian studies from …

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Whitney Western Art Museum

Whitney Museum appoints Susan Barnett western American art curator

The Whitney Western Art Museum at the Buffalo Bill Center of the West appoints Susan Barnett new Scarlett Curator of Western American Art Susan Barnett …

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Young woman holding owl

The Internship: Part II

Clouds and Rain Galore Happy June! It was rainy pretty much this entire week (May 30th to June 3rd). There were maybe a few days …

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The Internship

Hello! My name is Grace Shumway, and I’m the intern this summer for the Draper Museum Raptor Experience. I’ll be writing these blog posts as …

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Thomas Mickell Burnham (1818–1866) characterized the group. "The Lewis and Clark Expedition," ca. 1850. Oil on canvas, 36.125 x 48.5 inches. Museum Purchase. 21.78

Meet Me in St. Louis – Points West Online

Originally published in Points West magazineSummer 2010 Meet Me in St. Louis By Robert V. Goss A previous Points West Online series featured the travels …

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Tim McCoy and The Covered Wagon: the Birth of a Movie Star

When Tim McCoy was eight years old, his father took him to a showing of Buffalo Bill’s Wild West. Tim dated his desire to be …

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The auction of a custom, one-of-a-kind New Original Henry Rifle benefits the Cody Firearms Museum.

Hand-engraved masterpiece for auction pays tribute to Louis Daniel Nimschke

One-of-a-kind hand-engraved Henry rifle for auction pays tribute to Louis Daniel Nimschke, proceeds benefit the internationally-acclaimed Cody Firearms Museum in Cody, Wyoming. Together with Baron …

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Buffalo Bill Center of the West

Introducing digital membership cards

The Buffalo Bill Center of the West is now offering digital membership cards as a member benefit for all membership levels. By using a digital …

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Mack Frost's photograph of the 2012 lunar eclipse with Horse’s Head snowfield and Castle Rock. (detail)

Horse’s Head Lunar Eclipse – Points West Online

Originally published in Points West magazineSpring 2020 How I Got That Shot: Horse’s Head Lunar Eclipse By Mack Frost As a photographer, I have always …

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Gentleman's Recreation

Before We Were Here…Rare Books

Rare Books & Archives When I see a collection of books, I see knowledge. I see history. I see an intellectual economy. I see more than …

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Early view of the town of Cody, Wyoming. MS 5 Cody Local History Collection, McCracken Research Library. P.5.1465

A Podcast Conversation on the West, Buffalo Bill, and more

The Buffalo Bill Center of the West’s Eric Rossborough, our McCracken Research Library’s Associate Librarian and Senior Cataloger, joined Ramsey Russell, host of the “Duck …

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The Pitchfork Ranch Antelope Caper

When Monte Skinner was seven years old, he was given the chore of catching baby antelope. Since I’ve been in Wyoming I’ve become used to …

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Short-eared owl identification.

Owl Sounds: Not Just Hooters

This blog describes sounds from a few owl species, as well as offering you sound bites to listen to. If I ask you what sound …

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Who is Liver-Eating Johnson, and Why Are They Saying Those Terrible Things About Him?

Tri Robinson was in his second year as a schoolteacher. He had overcome a learning disability to get through college and now he was faced …

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Plains Indian Museum Seasons of Life gallery

The Center of the West’s Native Education Outreach Program

Over the past few years, the Buffalo Bill Center of the West has embarked on an ambitious education program that embraces the concept of Indian …

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Rock Dove, or Pigeon

To Hate or Not to Hate, That is The Pigeon

Ahhhhhhh, the pigeon. I feel confident saying that nearly every human on the planet has seen a “pigeon.” These birds are found everywhere across the …

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Three Kings: Joshua Williams, Julian Ward, Napoleon Brown, Okmulgee, OK. Photo by Ivan McClellan.

Black Cowboys in America – Points West Online

Originally published in Points West magazineSpring 2021 Black Cowboys in America: Photographer Illuminates Diversity of the American Cowboy Story by Tessa BakerPhotos by Ivan McClellan …

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Eye Color and Eyelashes of Birds

Bird’s eyes vary greatly in iris colorations, along with if they do or do not have eyelashes.

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Kids Ask WhY launches season two

Produced by Wyoming Public Media and the Buffalo Bill Center of the West, Kids Ask WhY features young journalists from Wyoming (ages 7 to 12), …

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Hal Evarts’s Skunk Ranch

In 1903, when Hal Evarts was fifteen years old, he and a friend made camp on the Arkansas River. “Fur sign was plentiful,” he wrote, …

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Contemporary Meets Culture: Modern Art in the Plains Indian Museum

In the Plains Indian Museum, next to the coolest pairs of sneakers I have ever seen, a unique object sits amongst other colorful artifacts with …

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The Twilight Life of Charles King

Popular nineteenth century writers like James Fenimore Cooper and Mark Twain were so popular they got their own library call number. This is something twentieth …

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Essential National Park Playlist

While there are a total of over 420 national park sites in the United States, only 63 receive the special designation of National Park.  From towering peaks in Denali to colorful coral reefs in Biscayne, …

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Adele von Ohl Parker – Cowgirl, Performer and Icon of the Arena

Plumb full of talent, cowgirl Adele von Ohl Parker graced arenas and stages brimming with bravado. Parker was raised on a horse farm in Plainfield, …

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Parts of a Western Saddle and the Variations

Wedged under almost every cowboy that attempted to tame the frontier was a saddle. The culmination of craftsmanship and practicality, the western saddle is a key piece in the …

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Artist Highlight: Walter Matia

Walter Matia is a sculptor with an incredible talent of freezing wildlife in its tracks. With intense attention to detail, Matia brings his pieces to life …

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The pack strings head out.

Into the Yellowstone Wilds – Points West Online

Originally published in Points West magazineSummer 2011 Into the Yellowstone Wilds By Jennifer McDonald, Former Program Manager, Draper Natural History Museum Then-Natural History Program Manager …

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2021 Silent Auction

Silent auction 2021: Find unique gifts for yourself or a friend!

Each year, the Buffalo Bill Center of the West’s Patrons Ball fundraising gala includes a silent auction of beautiful artwork and jewelry, decorative arts, and …

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Don’t Fence Me In: A Draper and Science Kids Adventure

The Future of Wildlife Resides in the Hands of the Youth That was one of several take home messages that youth participants of the Don’t …

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Artist Highlight: Dustin Van Wechel

Dustin Van Wechel is an oil painter with a knack for realism. His meticulous attention to detail and extremely specific brushwork is mesmerizing in an ‘analyze every detail for hours and wonder how it’s possible’ type …

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McCracken Research Library researchers studying the American West find a multitude of resources from current publications to original historic documents. This was the Reading Room as arranged in 2005.

This Library is Anything but Quiet – Points West Online

Originally published in Points West magazineSpring 2005 This Library is Anything but Quiet By Nathan Bender, Former Curator, McCracken Research Library Norman Cousins (1915–1990), editor …

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Rodeo Capital of the World

At the Buffalo Bill Center of the West, we are grateful to be located in the “Rodeo Capital of the World.” Every summer night after the museum has shut its …

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Audrey Roll-preissler (b 1932). "Trojan Piñata (Portrait of Alan Simpson)," 1987. Polychromed wood with paper, 21.25 x 32.5 x 14.75 inches. Gift of the artist. 10.93 (detail)

A Modern Day “Hole-in-the-Wall” Gang’s Unexpected Journey – Points West Online

Originally published in Points West magazineWinter 2010 A Modern Day “Hole in the Wall” Gang’s Unexpected Journey By Whitney Western Art Museum Volunteers “While browsing …

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Artist Highlight: Russell Case

Dreamily depicting scenes of the American West, Russell Case captures the viewer’s eye through vibrant color and light. This allows them to explore the detailed elements of the pieces. Most …

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Views from Yonder: Outside Perspectives of the Wild West

What do you picture when you think of the Wild West?  Do you see tumbleweeds drifting through a small town? The bucking bronco on the Wyoming license plate? Or does a gunslinging video …

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Wildflower Watch

Walking through sage brush steppe on the hottest day of the year, I felt like I was surrounded by a monotonous sea of dirt and …

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William F. Cody with Native American performers in the Wild West arena, 1890–1910. MS 6 William F. Cody Collection, McCracken Research Library. P.69.897

The One that Got Away… A Photo, That Is – Points West Online

Originally published in Points West magazineSpring 2016 The One that Got Away… A Photo, That Is By Tom F. Cunningham The ways in which our …

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Anson Eddy Takes Off

A Future Executive? When I was doing research on Anson Eddy, I found record of someone by that name working as an elevator operator in …

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Grizzly bear. C.R. Preston photo. (detail)

Last of the Wild West: the Yellowstone Grizzly Bear – Points West Online

Originally published in Points West magazineSpring 2007 Last of the Wild West: the Yellowstone Grizzly Bear By Charles R. Preston, PhD It was warm for …

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Guardians of the Galleries

If you ask anyone who works at the Center of the West who keeps this place running, they will most likely say the security guards. They safeguard the art, protect the …

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Gunslinging Gameplay – Red Dead Redemption

It is every Cowboy-and-Cowpoke-playing child’s dream to travel across the West, be a gunslinger, and face the perils of an untamed landscape. Those children grow …

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Beetle Buffet – Feeding on the Future of Science

Tucked away in aquarium tanks rifling through skulls and bones of a bull snake, wolf, and osprey are the dermestid beetles of the Center of the …

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W.H.D. Koerner (1878–1938). "The Road to Oregon (Lone Travel, or Travel in Groups of a Few, as Andy Had Known it, Was Practically a Thing of the Past)," 1933. Oil on canvas. Gift of Ruth Koerner Oliver. 6.92.2 (detail)

Traveling West Page by Page – Points West Online

Originally published in Points West magazineFall/Winter 2014 Traveling West Page by Page By Henry M. Yaple “To those with ears to hear, libraries are really …

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A Day at the Center of the West

Rolling into Cody, Wyoming, is a sight to see. Strolling through downtown can make you feel transported to the Old West, and the mountain views from all angles will take your …

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On the Silent Hills Near the Little Big Horn

The relentless wind moved the sea of grass like ocean waves. Staring across the tranquil distance it was difficult to imagine the bloodshed that had …

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Artist-in-Residence Jeff Rudolph in the Whitney Western Art Museum.

Artists-in-Residence enliven Center of the West’s museum spaces

Each summer, the Buffalo Bill Center of the West welcomes artists-in-residence to its museum galleries to demonstrate their artistic techniques and share their vision with …

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Welcoming Jason Housel: Draper Natural History Museum Artist-in-Residence

From July 26 to 30, Jason Housel is the Draper Natural History Museum’s artist-in-residence. Jason will be interacting with guests and creating displays that showcase …

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Panoramic view of Whitney Western Art Museum when it reopened on June 21, 2009.

Seeing the West in a Whole New Way – Points West Online

Originally published in Points West magazineFall 2009 Seeing the West in a Whole New Way: The 2009 Whitney Museum Reopening By Laurel Eatherly A blast …

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Ballin’ on a Budget – A Yellowstone Vacation

Congratulations! You are probably considering a Yellowstone vacation. With breathtaking views and wildlife abound, a trip to the world’s first national park is almost a no-brainer. Except, occasionally for the pocketbook. Fret not, gathered …

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Buffalo Bill Center of the West

Chiller Thriller and Boiler Spoiler – Points West Online

Originally published in Points West magazineSummer 2021 Chiller Thriller and Boiler Spoiler: NEH Infrastructure Challenge Grant Required 3-to-1 Match It seems like a lifetime ago, …

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Little Red Corvette – Points West Online

Originally published in Points West magazineSpring 2021 Little Red Corvette: Local Partnership Yields Ideal Car Raffle By Spencer Smith For each of the past 20 …

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Upper Falls of Yellowstone

Ultimate Trip Guide Through Yellowstone’s East Entrance

From the dazzling lights of the Cody Nite Rodeo up to the snow-covered peaks surrounding Sylvan Pass down to the wildlife on the rolling hills …

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Bear Country Bare Necessities

Although appearing as cuddly as their toy store counterparts, wild bears are not to be played with. Being safe in bear country is critical. After all, when visiting nature, you are the guest, and the …

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The Man Who Wasn’t Jim Bridger

A Well-watered Area Jim Bridger had seen the handwriting on the wall. Between the early 1820s and late 1830s, fur brigades had moved from watershed …

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Old Westerns: Fiction vs Reality

Seeing the historical figures that are displayed around the museum suddenly come to life in Westen films is entertaining, but not always historically accurate. Many of the information we …

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A Cossack Wild West poster, 1896. Museum purchase. 1.69.451

Georgian horsemen in the Wild West show – Points West Online

Originally published in Points West magazineSummer 2019 Georgian horsemen in the Wild West show By Irakli Makharadze Translated from Georgian by Salome and Nino Makharadze …

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Caching in Birds: What it is, the Why and How

A few weeks ago a friend asked me what the word cache meant. Many species of animals commonly cache complete meals or leftovers. In fact, …

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Harold McCracken collage

Harold McCracken’s Nature Writing – Points West Online

Originally published in Points West magazineSummer 2017 Harold McCracken’s Nature Writing By Mary Robinson In a previous, two-part Points West Online installment, Mary Robinson told …

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Museum Minute: Lakota Tradition of Celebrating Childbirth

Hunter Old Elk, the curatorial assistant of the Plains Indian Museum, said when children come into this world, they are a new generation.  “They are …

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The Day I met Willis McDonald

Shortly after I started at the McCracken Research Library, our Director, Mary Robinson, came into my office one day. “Do you want to go to …

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Museum Minute: A Unique Copy Of George Catlin’s Books Of Paintings

Artist George Catlin made a number of trips to the West in the 1830s. He spent a lot of time with the upper Missouri tribes, …

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Cowboy saddling horse. Adobe Stock image (detail)

How Not to Spook a Horse – Points West Online

Originally published in Points West magazineSpring 2020 How Not to Spook a Horse By Jim Davis This article giving advice on how not to spook …

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Firearms and the West gallery in the Cody Firearms Museum, with Winchester Factory lintel.

Museum Minute: How A Museum Decides What To Collect

The Cody Firearms Museum has over 7,000 firearms in the collection. So are they looking to add anything to the collection? Danny Michael, the curator …

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Winchester carbine, ca. 1868. Gift of Olin Corporation, Winchester Arms Collection. 1988.8.168

150 Years On Target – Points West Online

Originally published in Points West magazineFall 2016 150 Years On Target New Mexico Electric News, May–June 1966 An unlikely magazine—New Mexico Electric News, May–June 1966—featured …

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