Memorabilia.Expert

Sports Auctions and Fine Collectibles

Uncovered After Years. Annie Oakley’s Jingle Dress From Buffalo Bills Wild West Show

Sitting Bull and Annie Oakley

Sitting Bull and Annie Oakley

Sharpshooter Annie Oakley Worn Jingle Dress in Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show(From Olympic Sharpshooter Collection) Now Available In Auction at BidAMI.com.  Auction Closes February 6th, 2014.  You can view the dress on display at the LVH Casino in Las Vegas.  The LVH hosts the nations favorite and biggest Rodeo and Cowboy Christmas.

Annie Oakley's Jingle Dress

Annie Oakley’s Jingle Dress

“Aim at a high mark and you will hit it. No, not the first time, nor the second and maybe not the third. But keep on aiming and keep on shooting for only practice will make you perfect. Finally, you’ll hit the Bull’s Eye of Success.” – Annie Oakley
Howdy folks! Presented is a Jingle Dress worn by America’s first superstar Annie Oakley!
Oakley’s sharpshooting skills and showmanship was revered around the world. Her talent made her not only a pioneer in entertainment but (gosh, darn it) a woman doing well as an inspiration for others.
She was born Phoebe Ann Moses and developed her well known stage name after a Cincinnati neighborhood. Early on in life, she suffered hardship as both her father and stepfather died when she was a child.
Shortly thereafter, Oakley and her husband Frank Butler joined the Four-Pauw and Sells Brothers Circus in 1880 as a shooting act. They met the great Sioux Indian Chief Sitting Bull in St. Paul, Min, in 1882, at which time Annie was adopted into the tribe as “Mochin Chilla Wytonys Cecilia,” which is the Sioux Indian name for “My Daughter, Little Sure Shot.” Two years later they joined Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show. This association with Sitting Bull, Medicine Man, and the Annie Oakley’s Jingle dress is imperatively impressed upon us.
Audiences were simply captivated by this tiny woman shooting the end off of cigarettes that were pursed between her husband’s lips. And not to mention, blowing the delicate edges of playing cards to smithereens. She also entertained royals like Queen Victoria and Kasier Wilhelm II (she shot a cigarette out of his mouth and wrote him a letter after WWI broke out asking for another try).
Every part of her act was saturated in showmanship including her grand entrances. Annie was well known to perform tricks with a horse riding side saddle common for the day. This JIngle dress was worn by her most likely as an attractive presentation. After all she single handedly saved Buffalo Bills show. Perhaps she saved the show with the assitance of this Jingle Dress and its miraculous powers.
79149_06_lgAlthough Annie was known to dress in a more “grandmotherly” fashion, it is by her association with the Sioux Indians and Sitting Bull, we can make the leap of her owning and wearing a Jingle Dress. The history of the dress had healing abilities. The forest green dress was handcrafted in a Native American style. . It was highlighted by adding small golden accents on the collar, red striping and rolled Copenhagen tops making chimes layered on the top and bottom. Perfect for her 5′ stature, the dress measures 44.5″ from the top of the shoulder to the hem line at the bottom.
The dress was not long for a 5 ft woman, however, as Annie rode side saddle. The dress would have to be long enough to accomodate this style of riding. In addition, the dress could be cinched at the waist with a belt, blousing the top, over the skirted bottom.
This dress is made with hundreds of small rolled tin cones, traditonally made from Copenhagen tobacco tin lids, sewn into rows on the dresses. They make a beautiful loud “swishing” noise as the ladies dance, and these dresses are quite heavy. Did Annie dance with the Sioux Indians? Why wouldn’t she? She was adopted by Sitting Bull as his daughter.
The dress orignates from a former Sharp Shooter Olympian’s collection. The Olympian won a medal for sharpshooting. The father was a sharp shooter, his daughter was a sharp shooter hence the alliance with Annie Oakley. The dress has since resided with the Olympian’s family and is now become available to the public as an important piece of Americana.

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This entry was posted on December 30, 2013 by in Authentication Tips and tagged , , , , .
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