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Silent Serial SensationsThe Wharton Brothers and the Magic of Early Cinema$
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Barbara Tepa Lupack

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781501748189

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: September 2020

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9781501748189.001.0001

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Taming and Reframing Buffalo Bill

Taming and Reframing Buffalo Bill

(p.58) Chapter 4 Taming and Reframing Buffalo Bill
Silent Serial Sensations

Barbara Tepa Lupack

Cornell University Press

This chapter studies Ted Wharton's final film for Essanay: a historical epic, originally titled The Indian Wars (1914) and later released under various other titles. That film, one of the first to be made with historical preservation in mind, would reenact some of the major Indian battles. Few other producers were capable of managing such a massive and challenging project. Ted, however, had already demonstrated his ability to recreate a similar large-scale “splendid Historical Pageant.” The Indian Wars promised to be even more spectacular. The film was largely the creation of the legendary William Cody, a colorful and iconic figure known worldwide by his public persona of “Buffalo Bill.” Recognizing the broad impact of film, Cody determined to use the new medium as a vehicle for writing—or, in some cases, rewriting—his own history and shaping his legacy.

Keywords:   Ted Wharton, Essanay, The Indian Wars, Indian battles, William Cody, Buffalo Bill

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