Top 10 Western Museums of 2011

His story is told in the town where he was born (LeClaire, Iowa, at the Buffalo Bill Museum) … in the town he founded (Cody, Wyoming, at the Buffalo Bill Historical Center’s Buffalo Bill Museum) … and outside of Denver where he died.

Golden’s Buffalo Bill Museum & Grave—the True West Museum of 2011—was founded in 1921, four years after Cody’s death, by Cody’s foster son, Johnny Baker. The more we study Cody, the more we learn, and the Buffalo Bill Museum adapts with these revelations. Museum director Steve Friesen’s research led to a new look, and new interpretation, of Cody’s life in December 2009. In March 2010, the temporary exhibit, “Colors of Faith: Art of the Native American Church”—put together in consultation with church members—showed how Indian and Christian beliefs converged.

The museum also negotiated a donation of almost 1,000 dime novels, Wild West programs, postcards and books, while Friesen’s book Buffalo Bill: Scout, Showman, Visionary was launched in July 2010. Throw in the annual re-creation of Cody’s burial, the Buffalo Bill’s Western Roundup history festival and Cody’s birthday party, and folks easily see why this is one great museum.

Besides, you can’t beat that view from atop Lookout Mountain.

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