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Wirth's Wild West Show.

(Auckland "Herald," Sept. 16, 1890.) Yesterday afternoon the cowboys who came from America to form part of Wirth Brothers' Wild West Show, proceeded to Greenland, Ellerslie, to inspect some unbroken horses which Messrs Paterson have just had forwarded from the King country. Tho cowboys all rode out on horses provided by Messrs Wirth, and were garbed m the full costume of the prairies, while the accoutrements of their' steeds were of genuine Wild West type, comprising heavy high-peaked, ornamental, Mexican saddles, and monstrous stirrups, encased m the huge leather flaps that are usen fco brush aside the high grass when riding on the pampas. On the road out Jack Brown gave one or two exhibibitions of his skill m picking up objects at full speed without dismounting, while Charles Meadows, who was bestriding a local horse he had purchased m the morninir, had an impromptu bit of buckjumping on Parnell rise, owing to his saddle slipping. On reaching Messrs Paterson's paddocks at Greenland, a troop of some twenty horses wore found roaming m the field, amongst them being the quintette upon which the visitors were invited to operate. Owing to having no trained " roping" horses with them, they worked on foot. One wild-looking cowboy, rejoicing m the soubriquet of "Pighead Jim," acted as harder and drove the mob past the others, who were standing i about the field with their lassoes whirling over their heads. A sturdy bay horse rushed past, and- Captain Jack Sutton quickly had a loop round his neck and brought him to a sudden standstill. The horse curvetted wildly, requiring several to hold him. As he bucked, however, George Felton deftly threw a second noose round his hind legs, and he was then almost helpless. A blind was put over his eyes, and then he was saddled and bridled without much trouble. The fun began when one of the cowboys leaped upon his back and he was set free. The horse dashed hither and thither, bucked, reared, and shied violently, but all to no purpose, as his rider while exciting him by voice, thong, and limbs, maintained bis seat with ease and grace, and m about five minutes the erstwhile unbroken steed suffered himself to be quietly led to a corner and fastened to the fence by a simple halter. Four other animals were similarly treated, and the thirty spectators' who had gathered to witness the fun expressed their admiration of the ease with which the "bronchobusters " dealt with animals which had never previously had even a halter upon their necks. Owing to using new lariats the cowboys were not as certain as usual m their casting, the lines of plaited buft'alo thongs being stifF and " kinky," while the absence of trained "runner" horses prevented them working on horseback—a mode which they much prefer. The Indians who have come down to form an important section of the Wild West Show are, as already mentioned, of three tribes—the Sioux, of Dakota ; the Caughnayua, of British Canada ; and the Yumas, from Southern Arizona. Rain-in-the-face, the chief of the Yumas, is a fine type of his race, being over six feet m height and 14st m weight. He is a noted warrior, but excels as a long distance runner, having frequently exceeded 100 miles m 24 hours, his record being a performance of 107 miles while carrying a box of candles (251bs) on his shoulders. All these Indians being brought together for the first time by their common connection with the Wild West Show, are naturally somewhat distrustful and jealous of one another, and they exercise the greatest care m demanding all the ceremonies due to their several ranks, and m wearing all the distinctive features of their natural tribal attire. In their performances with Messrs Wirth Brothers' Show m the colonies, the Indians will illustrate the primitive, yet happy style m which they now live on their reservations, as well as give representations of the fierce frontier feuds, m which they engaged a decade ago, giving representations of the plundering of emigrant trains, tribal fights "death" dances, buffalo hunts, etc. The date for the opening of the show is not yet fixed, but it will take place during this week. At the site m Wellesley street, the preparations are already far advanced, the ploughing and levelling work for the two circus rings and a larger outside riding track being almost completed, while the enclosing of a large area with canvas was executed yesterday, and the erection of patent seats to accommodate 5000 people is now being attended to. Messrs Wirth Brothers have recently made additions to their already complete circus troupe, and the show altogether promises to be one of the most varied and. attractive that Australia has ever seen.

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Bibliographic details

Wirth's Wild West Show., Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2528, 26 September 1890

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Wirth's Wild West Show. Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2528, 26 September 1890