The American cowboy has come to symbolize bravery, justice, and the nostalgic freedom of the Wild West. But real cowboys didn’t spend all their time fighting bandits and riding into the sunset like movie heroes. What did real Nebraska cowboys do every day? Find out through a new exhibit at the Nebraska History Museum and an article in the Fall 2013 issue of Nebraska History.
Omaha in 1886 boasted about 150 saloons manned by a host of bartenders who ministered to the city’s thirst for beer and hard liquor. The Omaha Bee on September 26, 1886, noted the “many things, interesting and curious, that might be written about the Omaha bartenders.”
Having $100,000 in 1874 was the same as being a multimillionaire today. Few people ever amassed so much money, and fewer still were rich enough to make a loan of that size.
This artist’s conception of Samuel Peppard’s wind wagon as it was departing Fort Kearny in May 1860, appeared in Frank Leslie's Illustrated Newspaper on July 7 of that year. RG1576-2 (at left).