Stagecoach Trip in Sheridan County – Sheridan Media
Buffalo-Clearmont Stage Line, courtesy of Clearmont Historical Group
First came the horse to travel the western plains. Then enterprising men discovered that people would pay to ride more comfortably and travel faster than to ride a single horse. The diligence was born. A stage, with horse changes every ten miles or so, could be good weather, and anyone with the money could travel indoors, sheltered from the rain, wind and most of the dust.
One of the most famous stage lines, after the Overland Stage Company, was the Deadwood stage, also known as the Deadwood Cheyenne or Cheyenne-Black Hills stage. Deadwood had gold, and Cheyenne, at that time, was the only railway terminus.
Established in 1876 by the trader of the Red Cloud Agency, Captain FD “Frank” Yates, the Deadwood Stage was the only successful attempt to establish the route between Cheyenne, Wyoming and the mines of Deadwood, SD, due to numerous attacks. Indian.
The first stage took place on September 25, 1876. Two years later the line was sold to Jack Gilmer and Monroe Salisbury of Ogden, Utah. They hired Luke Voorhees as general superintendent, who bought her two years later. Voorhess continued to operate the line until 1882. The route was cut short in 1887 when the railroad crossed the Black Hills in 1886. One stagecoach in particular has a colorful history and is now on display at the Buffalo Bill Center in Cody , Wyoming.
Buffalo Bill Cody, while searching for General Crook, led this step during the Crook campaign in 1876 against the Sioux. After Crook’s campaign, Cody learned that the old stagecoach had been abandoned. Taking some companions, he proceeded to rescue her. When Cody put on his Wild West show, he got permission to use the historic coach to describe some of the dangers of stagecoach travel in the west.
Buffalo, Clearmont, and Sheridan also had stagecoaches. The Buffalo Stage and later the Buffalo-Clearmont Stage operated for many years to carry passengers, mail, and other shipments.
Some old newspaper articles show it was a busy time for stagecoaches. One of the first notes from the scene was an advertisement in The Buffalo Bulletin, August 20, 1891. By this time, the railroad had reached Moorcroft, but was still under construction as far as Clearmont.
BURLINGTON – BUFFALO STAGE AND EXPRESS CO. SPEED, SAFETY AND COMFORT. DAILY 4 HORSE COACHS now go from Buffalo to the end of the B&M trail. Tickets sold in Buffalo on the B&M to all east, west, south and north points. Depart Buffalo 2:30 p.m. Arrive Buffalo 8:30 a.m. Depart Moorcroft at 2:30 p.m. Arrive Moorcroft 8:30 p.m. Passenger fare, $ 15.00. 3 cents per pound on all baggage over 50 pounds.
The graphic, Douglas, Wyoming, July 4, 1891
Senator McCormick, of Sheridan County, descended on the Buffalo stage Tuesday morning and immediately took the train to Cheyenne.
Even in the 1900s, the stages still operated, although the transcontinental stage lines disappeared due to the arrival of the railroad, there were still short lines between the towns that had the trains and the towns that did not have any.
In winter, snow blown could be a problem, but the mail had to pass.
In The Daily Enterprise, December 18, 1909
After six days without mail, Buffalo’s Isolation in this regard will likely be relieved today, four men having entered Banner yesterday from Sheridan and Buffalo at the risk of freezing limbs and possibly losing their lives. The stagecoach that had been stranded at Kearney on the Sheridan to Buffalo route also managed to reach Banner thanks to runners.
In Buffalo Voice, August 5, 1910:
Clearmont Buffalo stage line. The Clearmont – Buffalo mail, the passenger and express stage will depart from the Occidental Hotel, Buffalo, 7:18 a.m. a.mr. every day, when arriving at Clearmont at 1 p.m. p.m .; sheets Clearmont at 2:30 p.m. and arrive Buffalo at 9 p.m. The scene makes the connection with the east direction noon train and westbound train at 1:30 p.m.
Although most of the stage drivers are men, there were a few notable female stage drivers. Charlie Parkhurst, also known as “One-Eyed Charley” or “Six-Horse Charley”, was a stagecoach driver in California. Parkhurst fooled everyone into believing she was a man. She ran away from home in her youth, took on a male name, and worked as a stable helper, gold digger and stagecoach driver. It was not until his death that his secret was known.
A 1.8m tall, muscular pistol racing Mary Fields, aka Stagecoach Mary (1832-1914) drove a mail car in Montana for many years. Born as a slave in Tennessee, Fields was one of Montana’s first female entrepreneurs and stagecoach drivers.
The Clearmont Stage had its own female stage pilot.
From the Democrat of Moorcroft, December 27, 1918
Broken wrist in Runaway: That the young women of Wyoming own sterling metal is again pby the daring bravery of Miss Princess Butler, who took on a “man’s job” as a conductor of the sstage between Passaic, Wyo., and Sayle, Mont. This is one of the pioneering spots of this pioneer state, where the railroad, the forerunner of civilization, has not made its appearance. However, here as elsewhere, the days of the thrilling “hold-youps “has passed into oblivion, and nothing but the clicking of spurs and the call of cowboys, shatter the peaceful silence of the hills.
As Miss Butler rode the stage horses down the familiar tread road last week, a bolt occurreded To get out of the double tree. The horhis immediately got scared. As their handsome driver tightly squeezed the reins with all his might, they pulled her out of the seat. she succeeded in control the horses and prevent a serious runaway, but broke his wrist in the struggle.
MPW Powers from Passaic brought her to town on Saturday, where her injury received medical attention. She will be able to retin the country today so that she can enjoy christmas at home.– Sheridan Company.
The stagecoach journey even had its own rules.
Like Buffalo Bill’s most famous Wild West Show, many fairs have recreated the old west. In Bill Barlow’s Budget, September 17, 1914 from Converse County.
The management of the Wyoming State Fair came out with the single cartoon above which in its design and representationI excels anything that has ever been attempted by a party or fair in the country. The original is a clever pencil sketch of a former stage heist. The scene takes place at an isolated stage station where the bandits shot at the road ranch. Old Tom Cooper has the lines while the treasure is defended by four messengers of old, including Scott Davis and Luke Voorhees who have more than once seen the real thing unfold. Coming to the relief, we see famous figures such as Frank Hadsell, R. Van Tassell, Lee Moore and a dozen other punchers of old who wrote the history of the men of the plains with their quirts and spurs …… The gathering of freighters, prospectors and cows of yesteryear. men at the Wyoming State Fair, in in all respects to be the most outstanding of its kind ever held, as these old boys will be the real characters who played out the moving scenes that make the history of Borders. Come to the Wyoming State Fair, Douglas, Wyoming, September 29 – October 2 and see the real thing for yourself…. it’s worth mentioning that this will be the thirty-sixth anniversary of the memorable heist of the Cheyenne-Deadwood stagecoach at Cold Springs on the West Slope.e of the Black Hills. The stage will actually be led by old Tom Cooper, the man who took the stage out after the heist. The stage, harness and all equipment are the very identical equipment and harness that were used on the stage on this occasion, and the same dresses in the seats, and the same old treasuresure box can be viewed and will be on display at the state fair and will be used on stage on this occasion. The old treasure box will be mercilessly torn from its place in the stage boot and its contents looted by men like Ed Patrick, Dan Fackler, Ed Morgan and others, making it clear that old boys still preserve art and know how the trick was shot in tthere days when the real drama was played out.
With the advent of the automobile, the era of stagecoaches slowly came to an end. In an article in The Semi-Weekly Sheridan Enterprise, April 3, 1908: Passenger car: Newton & Woodsides will install a 40 hp automobile on the Sheridan Buffalo Stage Route. Newton & Woodsides, scene line owners Sheridan and Buffalo have ordered a 40 HP Rapid Motor passenger car, and the big machine will arrive in Sheridan in the next week. This passager auto will be put on the Sheridan-Buffalo trail, and will accommodate 12 passengers… .. There is heavy passenger trafficBetween Sheridan and Buffalo, and gentlemen. Newton & WWellsides have shown commendable enterprise in outfit their stage line with this nice passenger car.
Diligence: A colorful part of the history of the West and Sheridan, with highwaymen, hardened drivers and Indian attacks, has passed into the mists of history.