We always marvel at the beauty of this country, and the drive to Cody, Wyoming was great.
We got settled into our campground, the Cody KOA, and took a trolley tour of the town.
The tour was entertaining and gave us quite a bit of history about Cody and how William F. “Buffalo Bill” Cody was instrumental in the founding of the town. We also learned about the controversy surrounding Buffalo Bill’s death and burial – he died in Denver and was buried there (although legend says that some enterprising individuals secretly went to Denver, switched bodies, and buried Buffalo Bill in an unmarked grave on Cedar Mountain overlooking Cody).
Throughout the tour, they showed us many historical photos and passed around various artifacts. This is a chunk of pink granite from the area said to be 2.7 billion years old.
We highly recommend the Cody Trolley Tour. Their motto is “Give Us An Hour – We’ll Give You 100 Years!” Well worth it.
Connecting with Friends
One of the highlights for us was connecting with our good friends George and Pam. It’s always fun to meet up with friends along the way, and we all had a blast together. Have you ever played Pegs and Jokers? It’s a game popular with RVers. We love it.
Buffalo Bill Center
The major attraction in Cody is the Buffalo Bill Center – a large complex featuring five museums and a research library. The center describes itself as presenting the “saga that is the real West,” and it covers everything from art and artifacts, to firearms, natural history and, of course, the history of Buffalo Bill himself.
We spent most of our time exploring the Buffalo Bill portion of the center. Very fascinating learning about Buffalo Bill, Wild Bill Hickok, Annie Oakley, and others.
Buffalo Bill rode for the Pony Express, received the Congressional Medal of Honor for his bravery after Sioux Indians ambushed the Third Calvary he was guiding, and became a great showman when he created “Buffalo Bill’s Wild West” which toured the United States and even Great Britain and continental Europe.
Here are some highlights.
Buffalo Bill’s Wild West show was very unique in that it employed many women – Cowgirls and sharp shooters – as well as an international cast representing numerous nationalities (even American Indians). The most famous sharpshooter was Annie Oakley.
During the Spanish-American War, she offered to organize and train a group of female shooters in support of the war effort but was turned down. After making a similar offer at the start of World War I (also turned down), she and her husband joined the YMCA and held exhibitions and presented lectures at Army posts to help soldiers hone their shooting skills.
Cody Night Rodeo
Cody is known as the “Rodeo Capital of the World” and the Cody Night Rodeo has been running nightly in June, July and August since 1938. What a fun and exciting event.
Visiting local churches is always a treat, and the Cowboy Church was a great find. This church has a ministry to the rodeo riders, and actually houses them in bunk houses on the property. They bring in coaches, review films, and provide spiritual guidance for the cowboys. Plus the pastor’s message was awesome.
We’ve been on the lookout for cowboy boots, and when we stumbled into a local store in Cody we were blown away at the artistry of the hand-crafted boots. Scott Wayne Emmerich has been making custom boots for more than 30 years. His client list has included everyone from John Wayne and Gene Autry, to Arnold Schwarzenegger, Bruce Willis, and even Madonna and Roseanne Barr.
Cody was definitely a fun time. Now we’re off to Bozeman, Montana on our trek north to Glacier National Park.