What to Expect When Traveling in Cody Wyoming
Buffalo Bill’s Cody/Yellowstone Country, The Northwest region of Wyoming offers visitors a reflection of life in the Old West. It has a thriving cowboy culture, Native American history and spectacular landscapes which both challenged the rugged fortitude of early settlers and inspired the formation of the National Park Service. This is one of the most traveled regions in the state and Cody is at its center.
Cody was founded by its namesake, William F. “Buffalo Bill” Cody who, with several friends, arrived here for the specific purpose of developing the land to build a community. The consummate entrepreneur and promoter, he used his influence to persuade the federal government and the Burlington Railroad to invest in the area’s resources and provide access routes to the national parklands, all which directly assured the vitality of his town. He lived his final 22 years in the area, leaving a lasting spirit that continues to be celebrated in historic sights, monuments, events and the community’s spirit of western hospitality.
Many attractions in Cody Wyoming offer insights to the natural and cultural history of the area. Here are a few examples. Cody Trolley Tours offers visitors an informative and entertaining overview of city sights, history, and lore. The one-hour tour travels 22 miles and covers 100 years of history. Each trolley has two guides offering an ongoing banter about local personalities, past and present, and share with visitors their collection of historic photos, artifacts and memorabilia.
Out in front of The Cody, Wyoming Chamber of Commerce is an enormous bronze statue of two cowboys shaking hands on horses. Cody and the surrounding areas are growing very nicely and the downtown district is alive with tourists and travelers who come to take part in the history of the Old West. The Cody Chamber has an interesting past in itself.
A short distance from downtown is historic Old Trail Town. This attraction is comprised of 26 restored buildings from Western Wyoming dating from 1879 – 2001. Many of the frontier cabins, the trading post, saloon and other buildings are decorated with artifacts from the period. Open daily, May through September.
Tecumseh’s Old West Village offers visitors a variety of experiences. Its Trading Post has a large selection of goods including its signature handcrafted leather garments that are fashioned in traditional old west and Native American styles. The Native American collections include pottery and ceremonial items of the Plains Indians and wool goods (blankets and jackets) made in the Hudson- Bay style. The Old West Miniature Village and Museum traces the history of Wyoming and Montana from the 1600s to the late 1890s. Dioramas and other displays have Western and Native American artifacts, wildlife mounts, guns and fur trader memorabilia.
If shopping for local Native American fine crafts and jewelry, visit the Indian Territory shop located downtown on Sheridan Avenue. The Buffalo Bill Historic Center was erected by the local citizenry in 1917 to honor Cody’s legacy and now encompasses five museums offering over 300,000 square feet of exhibit space. Each museum focuses on different aspects of western culture, history and art.