WILLIAM F. "BUFFALO BILL" CODY - AUTOGRAPH LETTER SIGNED 05/29/1911 - HFSID 314417
WILLIAM F. CODY
The famous Wild West showman pens a hopeful letter to his friend, stating "New England was never big for me. But wait till we start west. I predict a big season." The letter was written during the downfall of Cody's show empire due to outside expenses draining the immense profits from his show
Autograph letter signed: "Col.", 1 page, 8½x11 framed to an overall size of 25½x18½. Buffalo Bill's Wild West combined with Pawnee Bill's Great Far East. May 29, 1911. Portsmouth, [New Hampshire]. In full: "Dear Mayor Glad Light, Your letter which found me is fine health. We had two bad towns last week. Fitchburg & Newburyport. No one ever done business in either. The week hurt us at least $2000 in Lowell-sent your bank 5100 today to take up one of my notes. Been getting good deposits from the mines. Been getting in shape [illegible] or any one. I believe I'll walk a sale of the [illegible]. Note if good are doing. [illegible]. While I telegraph you for now we are all OK here-now. And barring accident we will be OK. New England was never big for me. But wait till we start west. I predict a big season. Love to you". William Frederick Cody (1846-1917) earned the name "Buffalo Bill" for killing thousands of buffalo as a hired hunter in 1867 and 1868. Cody began his Wild West career herding cattle at age nine. Five years later, he became the Pony Express' youngest rider. Throughout the Civil War, Cody worked as a government scout, extracting from life and the West all that it had to offer. His western notoriety grew with his adventures, including those during the Sioux War, in which he purportedly fought a duel with Chief Yellow Hand. Cody's theatrical career was launched that same year with his re-enactments of such Indian battles. By 1883, he formed his first Wild West spectacle, becoming a master showman who toured internationally until 1903. In 1908, Cody teamed up with his old rival, "Pawnee Bill" Lillie for a combined "two Bills" show. Lillie called his show "Far East" because it included Japanese and Arab performers, as well as Western Americana. (Adopting the honorary rank of Colonel for himself, Cody addresses Lillie by the lower rank of Major.) In 1913, financial circumstances forced Cody to sell his own show and join the Sells Floto show. Not framed in Gallery of History style. Multiple mailing folds. Slightly toned. Light surface creases. Otherwise, fine condition.
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