Title: Letter from William F. Cody to George T. Beck

Date: September 19, 1896

Author: Cody, William Frederick, 1846-1917

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Buffalo Bill's Wild West and Congress of Rough Riders.
of the World.

Col. W. F. Cody. (Buffalo Bill), President.


Nate Salsbury. Vice-President & Manager.

John M. Burke. General Manager.
Albert E. Sheible, Business Manager.
Jule Keen, Treasurer.

Dear George

Yours recd— Now you know what I meant by women running and interfereing with our affairs [3] explain it to Rumsey. I have just written the Tregos [4] a letter which they will want your decision on. Dont think I want to keep a Hotel If you think the Co. should run it allright. But I think it should be kept open by some one— If I am wrong close it up— And if I take it will you please explain to Co. that I did not take it thinking to make money but to keep it open— George you will need teams for election purposes— and the co should pay their share— dont you think so— They should not expect me to do every thing But your old honest judgement as General Manager will dicide that— If I had the money I would not have let the construction stop— Although Haydens estimates are getting bigger all the time— two months ago it was $6000 now after paying out nearly that much its now   $6,821.106. Just these kind of things are what the other members of the Co are throwing up to me— And I have got it right and left from them— Now George I expect you will put in some good work for the county seat. If you can land the County seat. Then we will be allright— And the kicking members will wheel into line And in Nov we will be hamering away at the bluff [5] with all kinds of powder— And a strong force. So I would not loose a trick to get the Town site. [6] Start a good stump speaker out— Keep hammering them. Write letters to every voter giving them a coppy of our offer to build Court House &c— And a bout bridgeing the river & makeing a cut off— A party of Northern Pacific railroad [7] officials left St Paul last wednesday 16th— to— locate a railroad to the Bear Creek Coal fields. [8] They told me they had stoped takeing Red Lodge [9] coal & would build a road at once to the Bear Creek Mines. If they do you can readly see that it will be a benefit to us.


Note 1: Buffalo Bill's Wild West performed in Sheldon, Iowa, on September 19, 1896. The day's entry in the 1896 Route Diary: "Sheldon, Iowa. / Saturday, Sept. 19. Arrived in town at 7 A. M. A good run and a long one, 126 miles. We had one happy man this morning. J. P. Anderson had his hay fever cured by the frost this morning, from which he has been suffering since August 12th. We had two hunting parties this afternoon, Wm. Sweeney, Johnnie Baker, Annie Oakley and Frank Butler. They shot six prairie chicken and one rabbit. The other party was Manager McCaddon and Fred Hutchinson; they went out for big game and came back without anything. / Weather fine to-day, but turned very cold towards night. / This town has 1,800 inhabitants and no street cars. / Business, big in the afternoon, but light at night. / Lot, foot of third street. / Arena, 187 x 351." [back]

Note 2: The year is not inscribed by Cody but is 1896. [back]

Note 3: The postmistress of the town, Mrs. Marion Williams, filed for a new Post Office under the name of "Shoshone," but the name was rejected by the government because of confusion with Shoshone Agency established in 1870 (in 1937 that name was changed to the Wind River Agency). Mrs. Williams then submitted the name "Richland" for the town; the Post Office accepted this name. However, a meeting was called by important members of the town, and the new name of "Cody" was formally submitted. The government then cancelled the name 'Richland' and in August 1896 formally accepted the name of Cody, Wyoming. [back]

Note 4: The "Tregos" are Charles Trego (1856-1925) and Carrie Trego (1866-1942); Charles was a personal friend of Cody's and a foreman for both Scout's Rest Ranch in North Platte, Nebraska, and the TE Ranch in Cody, Wyoming. [back]

Note 5: Red Bluffs, the hill formation to the south and west of Cody, Wyoming, that stands out among the mountainous formations due to its red color. [back]

Note 6: Cody wanted Beck to petition the State of Wyoming to make Cody the county seat. [back]

Note 7: Northern Pacific Railway. [back]

Note 8: "Bear Creek Coal fields" or "Bear Creek Mines," located at Bearcreek, Montana, about eight miles southeast of Red Lodge, Montana. In the Bearcreek district small mining operations started in the 1890s. Wagons pulled by horse and mule were used to haul coal to the railroad at Red Lodge. In 1897 the Montana Coal & Iron Company was formed. By 1907 four major mines were operating; as the mines started producing, the Montana, Wyoming & Southern Railroad laid tracks east of Bearcreek and eventually laid a line to these mines. [back]

Note 9: Red Lodge, Montana, lies 65 miles north of Cody and was the closest rail line to Cody, Wyoming. [back]

Title: Letter from William F. Cody to George T. Beck

Source: University of Wyoming, American Heritage Center, Buffalo Bill Letters to George T. Beck (Acc. #9972), ah031401-02

Date: September 19, 1896

Author: Cody, William Frederick, 1846-1917

Topic: Empire

People: Beck, George Washington Thornton, 1856-1943

Sponsor: Supported in part by a grant from the Wyoming Cultural Trust Fund, a program of the Department of State Parks and Cultural Resources.

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