History Nebraska Blog

Marker Monday: Chadron-Chicago Cowboy Race


150-198 E 2nd St, Chadron, Dawes County, Nebraska;

View this marker's location: 42.830997, -102.9994

Marker Text

America's longest horse race began here June 13, 1893. The 1,000 mile race ended June 27 in Chicago at Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show. The race apparently was the idea of Chadron jokester John G. Maher. Seven of nine riders finished, some traveling up to ninety miles a day. Nebraska badman "Doc" Middleton was an entrant. John Berry won, riding Sandy and Poison, but was disqualified for having prior knowledge of the route. Chadron officials declared Joe Gillespie the winner.

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