Skip to main content


    William F. "Buffalo Bill" Cody: A Rare and Colorful Early Poster. While it is undated, the style suggests that this poster probably dates from the late 1870s. The central image of Cody is surrounded by vignettes depicting different eras of his varied career: as wagon train master, justice of the peace, Pony Express rider, trapper, Overland stagecoach driver, Indian fighter, buffalo hunter, and guide to visiting royalty. Cody is shown slaying the Cheyenne chief Yellow Hand ("the first scalp to avenge Custer") in 1876, but significantly is nowhere depicted as a Wild West showman, which would seem to confirm the poster's early dating. Also depicted are honors given to him by the U.S. Congress and European royalty. One of the most elusive and graphically sophisticated of Buffalo Bill poster designs. In pleasing overall display condition, although it is somewhat evenly toned and is slightly trimmed. A little very trivial edge damage and tear above "Chief of Scouts" in the upper left-hand corner. A rare opportunity for the advanced collector of Buffalo Bill ephemera. 17.75" x 24".

    Additional research has determined that this poster was issued to promote the wild west show known as "Cody and Carver's Rocky Mountain and Prairie Exhibition," which existed for only a six month period in 1883. Type at the top and bottom of the poster advertising a specific performance has been trimmed off. A complete example is pictured in the book Buffalo Bill's Wild West by R.L. Wilson with Greg Martin, (New York: Random House, 1998), page 45.

    This was Buffalo Bill's first foray in the world of wild west show promotion. The partners had a falling out and became implacable enemies, but "Doc" Carver remained active as a trick shooter and show promoter for many years. See lots 38337 - 38341 in this auction for some additional significant Carver material.

    Fees, Shipping, and Handling Description: Flat Material, Small (view shipping information)

    Sales Tax information  |  Terms and Conditions

    Bidding Guidelines and Bid Increments

    Glossary of Terms

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    May, 2011
    21st Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 0
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 867

    Buyer's Premium per Lot:
    19.5% of the successful bid (minimum $14) per lot.

    Sold for: Sign-in or Join (free & quick)

    Heritage membership

    Join Now - It's Free

    1. Past Auction Values (prices, photos, full descriptions, etc.)
    2. Bid online
    3. Free Collector newsletter
    4. Want List with instant e-mail notifications
    5. Reduced auction commissions when you resell your
    Consign now
    • Cash Advances
    • More Bidders
    • Trusted Experts
    • Over 200,000 Satisfied Consignors Since 1976
    Only 32 days left to consign to the 2018 June 9 Featuring The Glen Swanson Collection of Indian War Relics, Including Little Big Horn Legends of the West Signature Auction - Dallas!

    Learn about consigning with us

    I don’t often do testimonials but in this case I felt truly obligated to thank Heritage Auctions for the extremely professional job your organization did for me.
    Charlie K.,
    Pittsburgh, PA
    View More Testimonials receives more traffic than any other auction house website. (Source:

    Video tutorial

    Getting the most out of search

    Recent auctions

    2018 March 17 Western Americana & Texana Grand Format Auction - Dallas
    2018 March 17 Western Americana & Texana Grand Format Auction - Dallas
    REALIZED SO FAR $316,694