By Julia Bricklin
this present day, so much take into account “California lady” Lillian Frances Smith (1871–1930) as Annie Oakley’s leader competitor within the small global of the Wild West exhibits’ lady shooters. however the girls have been fairly assorted: Oakley’s conservative “prairie good looks” character clashed with Smith’s tendency to put on flashy outfits and go together with the cowboys and American Indians she played with. This vigorous first biography chronicles the Wild West showbiz existence that Smith led and explores the abilities that made her a star.
Drawing on kinfolk files, press debts, interviews, and various different assets, historian Julia Bricklin peels away the myths that enshroud Smith’s fifty-year occupation. referred to as “The California Huntress” prior to she used to be ten years outdated, Smith was once a certified sharpshooter by the point she reached her kids, taking pictures pursuits from the again of a galloping horse in Buffalo invoice Cody’s Wild West. not just did Cody provide $10,000 to somebody who might beat her, yet he gave her most sensible billing, atmosphere the level for her contention with Annie Oakley.
Being the easiest lady sharpshooter within the usa used to be no longer sufficient, even though, to tell apart Lillian Smith from Oakley and an increasing number of ladylike cowgirls. So Smith reinvented herself as “Princess Wenona,” a Sioux with a violent and romantic prior. appearing with Cody and different showmen akin to Pawnee invoice and the Miller brothers, Smith led a tumultuous inner most existence, finally taking on the guard of a cast Indian character. The morals of the time inspired public feedback of Smith’s loss of Victorian femininity, and the press’s tendency to play up her competition with Oakley ultimately overshadowed Smith’s personal legacy.
after all, as writer Julia Bricklin exhibits, Smith cared extra approximately residing her lifestyles on her personal phrases than approximately her public picture. in contrast to her rivals who shot to make a residing, Lillian Smith lived to shoot.
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Additional info for America's Best Female Sharpshooter: The Rise and Fall of Lillian Frances Smith (William F. Cody Series on the History and Culture of the American West)
America's Best Female Sharpshooter: The Rise and Fall of Lillian Frances Smith (William F. Cody Series on the History and Culture of the American West) by Julia Bricklin