What About Wednesday?

Yesterday started out with practice day, Wednesday 'work shirkers' found 13 Cowboys head out to the range to partake in 6 stages.

We did one of single target engagement, a Nevada sweep next and then a 5 round alternate with a 5 round dump. Repeat each stage twice, giving you a chance to perfect on the previous run or change things up. It's good for checking yourself, your equipment and well, really…..just an extra day to have fun shooting!

After burgers and beer, Jack and I headed for the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum, my all time favourite, to see the headdress exhibition before it finishes this next month.

As we headed down the main passage way the current short exhibition is 'The Artistry of the Western Paperback'. Featuring artists who illustrated covers etc for dime novels and more. Of course we had to get pics of our heads in the photo opportunity novels!


Then we made our way into the exhibition hall where the 'Power and Prestige: Headdresses of the American Plains' is housed. There is no photography in this exhibit but I did take notes!

Around the walls are some beautiful photos of tribal chiefs and warriors. There are also some drawings that were done by captured Indians being held in forts. Many depicted warriors and horses.

The headdress, like other forms of clothing or jewellery in other cultures, is a symbol of prestige, power, wealth and position in a tribe.

Some of the headdresses were made with the traditional eagle feathers with porcupine quills, horsehair, leather, silk and/or beads. There were smaller ones made with deer tail and one split horn piece covered in weasel fur. This one (photo courtesy of National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum website) made using ring-neck pheasant feathers.


There are also 5 distinct styles of headdress; flared, swept back, stand out, straight up and trailer. The trailer headdress are exquisite but I would think there would be a fair bit of weight in these also as they are the ones that usually reach the ground. There is an exceptional exhibit of one in another section of the museum that we have seen before.

As we made our way to the next exhibition I spied a familiar bronze statue. It was indeed a Frederic Remington! (Remember the Winter Range trophies from previous blog?!!) here is a collection of Frederic Remington works including, bronze, drawings, art and facts and tales of the artist himself. A chance meeting I do declare! 🙂


On into the 'Hollywood and The West' exhibit. What a stunning collection of photography by John R Hamilton. (Also no photography in the exhibit.)

His many views through the lens of some very scenic sunsets, snow, monument valley backdrops, are beautiful but it is his candid shots of the many western actors that he captured both during filming and off set that makes for an excellent (photo courtesy of National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum website)


For movies from the silver screen era such as Hombré, Silverado, El Dorado, Stagecoach, The Searchers, Sergeants 3, Revenge and more. Featuring none other than John Wayne, Paul Newman, Kevin Costner, Henry Fonda, Kirk Douglas, the 'rat pack', and of course the lovely ladies Shelley Winters, Anne Margaret, Bridget Bardot and a very young Natalie Wood.


From here we could see another interesting exhibit with that all familiar cowboy accoutrement – the bandanna. Aptly named 'A Yard of Turkey Red: The Western Bandanna' just had to be viewed while we were here. (Photo courtesy of National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum website)


The neckwear that became the most recognised cowboy attire, was usually used to keep dust and dirt out of the cowboys face whilst herding cattle. They kept their best bandannas for outings and like other species, some were more colourful in hopes of attracting the ladies.

Turkey red was a colour produced for dyeing cotton with the root of the rubia plant. An arduous process apparently in the 18th and 19th century, it was imported to England from the Middle East in the 1700's. Later even cochineal was used to dye and produce magnificent reds also. Indigo also featured in later years.

Around the walls the photos and cabinet cards feature Cowboys sporting their bandannas and although black and white you can clearly see the distinctive patterns on them.

The display cases house a number of different bandannas, some dating back to pre civil war (paisley pattern)1865. The thing that caught my eye however was a bolt of fabric still with its stickers on it. A gorgeous red with cream and what appeared to be navy, continuous floral design motif. Made by SH Greene Warwick of Rhode Island, it was gorgeous and I found myself looki at the end of the bolt to see if I could work out how many yards were left on it!

It was interesting to note that many of the later bandannas had dot or geometric designs on them. The paisley design came in around 1808, so named after the town it was produced in – Paisley, Scotland. However paisley is an English word for buta or boteh, the teardrop shaped design is actually of Persian origins. As we know it is probably the most significant or recognisable detail on the bandanna.

Later productions of bandannas had pictures and were often used for souvenirs or advertising. There was a bandanna with a castle featured but I didn't get the details of this one. I did however find on the Internet that a bandanna with Washingtons picture on it was produced in 1776.

All in all a great way to round out the day!

Kat xo


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