NO VISIT to North Platte would be complete without visiting Scout's Rest, home of William "Buffalo Bill" Cody. You may have learned of him from American history studies in grammar school. Buffalo Bill was the legendary scout, trapper, hunter and showman who made his mark during the pioneer days when this country was being settled. "Buffalo Bill" earned his nickname during the Civil War, when he won a contract to supply the Kansas railroad workers with buffalo meat. In 1874 Bill purchased 160 acres of Nebraskan land to farm and raise cattle -- and where he considered retiring eventually. During his travels (which was most of the time) the ranch was managed by his family and expanded to more than 4000 acres to raise livestock, corn, oats, and alfalfa before it was sold some 33 years later. The ornate mansion was constructed along with a cob house, for storing corncob kindling for the house stoves, an ice house, and a barn for his thoroughbred livestock.
As it turned out Buffalo Bill didn't settle here but he did visit often to entertain friends and celebrities between travels with his Wild West Shows and exotic places abroad in Great Britain and Europe -- hence the ranch name Scout's Rest. The tradition of entertainment continues today as North Platte locals stage an annual Wild West Rodeo in his honor.
Week 19, 1422 Miles