Throwback Thursday: Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show

Welcome to Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show!

This week’s #ThrowbackThursday takes us back to Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show in 1894. This specific show is taking place in a Brooklyn, New York arena. The performers include both Native Americans and white men dressed as either cowboys or United States Army soldiers. The participant on the left side center of the photograph, identified with an X, is George W. Johnson of Holdrege.

This 12″x16″ sepia-toned photograph is owned by the Phelps County Historical Society and is published by the Holdrege Area Public Library. The library partnered with the Historical Society to digitize a collection of images portraying the history of Phelps County since the mid 1880’s. Subsets of this collection depict the Atlanta POW Camp which housed German prisoners of war during WWII, photos of Dr. Frank A. Brewster, known as the “Flying Doctor,” and the Christian Children’s Home. There are also several photographs from the George W. Johnson collection at the Museum that show typical scenes from the Buffalo Bill Wild West show in which Johnson was a performer.

If you want to see more Nebraska history, check out the Nebraska Memories archive! It’s a cooperative project to digitize Nebraska-related historical and cultural heritage materials and make them available to researchers of all ages via the Internet. Nebraska Memories is brought to you by the Nebraska Library Commission. If your institution is interested in participating in this project, see for more information.

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