The gun-sporting cowgirl of American history, Annie Oakley, is speaking to guests at the National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame—at least, in hologram form.
The talking hologram is part of the museum’s new permanent exhibit, Hitting the Mark: Cowgirls and Wild West Shows, which is now open to the public.
The gallery also features a life-size statue of Oakley, designed by local artist Janice Hart. The statue is posed holding one of Oakley’s guns. This is the first time the gun has been displayed in public.
The exhibit also features items from Oakley’s private life, including her wedding ring and hand-written letters. Oakley (1860-1926) was an American sharpshooter who starred in Buffalo Bill’s Wild West show. Her life was the subject of a 1946 Broadway musical Annie Get Your Gun. The original stage production featured Ethel Merman, while a 1957 NBC television special of the musical featured area actress Mary Martin in the lead role.
The gallery highlights the women performers at the Wild West shows between the 1880s and early 20th century. Historic items such as the parade flag from Buffalo Bill’s Wide West Show will be on display, along with photographs, Wild West show posters and archival footage. The items are housed in glass cases designed to mimic feminine curves.
The National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame, 1720 Gendy Street, remains open as it undergoes renovation. The first floor renovation began in 2014, while the second floor will close for renovation in 2016.