Symposium Session 10

4:30-6:00 PM Session 10: Roundtable Discussion: New Approaches to Cody Studies
Michelle Delaney, Moderator

John Fillwalk, The Wild West Show in Virtual and Augmented Reality

IDIA Lab Director John Fillwalk will survey recent Wild West Show projects employing virtual and augmented reality exhibitions for the Buffalo Bill Museum. These exhibits bring the past to life through dynamic immersive content – providing a visitor with a strong sense of presence that heightens impact and experience.

John Fillwalk is an internationally recognized artist and practitioner of virtual reality and interactive environments. He serves as the Senior Director of the Institute for Digital Intermedia Arts [IDIA Lab} at Ball State University. IDIA Lab is virtual and augmented reality design studio exploring the intersections of art, science and technology and was funded as part of the Eli Lilly Foundation’s Digital Media Initiative as part of two $20 million dollar gifts. His artwork has been extensively exhibited internationally and he has numerous scholarly publications and presentations.

Jeremy Johnston, Collaborating with George Beck and Buffalo Bill

Due to the scattered nature of Buffalo Bill’s archival record, The Papers of William F. Cody has collaborated with a number of archival repositories, museums, private collectors, and families.  This presentation will examine how the pursuit of documents related to the founding of the town of Cody, Wyoming, has produced some interesting partnerships and some surprising results.

Jeremy M. Johnston, Ph.D., is the Tate Endowed Chair of Western History, the Goppert Curator of the Buffalo Bill Museum, and Managing Editor of the Papers of William F. Cody at the Buffalo Bill Center of the West in Cody, Wyoming.  Johnston recently earned his Ph.D. in history from the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow, Scotland. His dissertation considered the personal, professional, and public interactions between Theodore Roosevelt and Buffalo Bill Cody. He previously attended the University of Wyoming where he received his BA in 1993 and his MA in 1995. His writings have been published in Annals of Wyoming, Colorado Heritage, Points West, Readings of Wyoming History, The George Wright Forum, Yellowstone Science, and various regional newspapers. He recently co-edited an annotated edition of Ernest Thompson Seton’s book Wahb: The Biography of a Grizzly (2015) with Chuck Preston.

Douglas Seefeldt, “The Last of the Mohicans Realized in London”: Visualizing the Wild West in Britain, 1887-88”

This research project uses digital topic modeling and text analysis tools to analyze popular representations of the American West published in London prior to the arrival of Buffalo Bill’s Wild West in 1887. It visualizes how these discussions shaped and reflected the British conceptions of the American West and compares these visualizations to textual analyses of promotional material generated by Cody’s marketing team as well to commentary on the show in British periodicals and newspapers.

Douglas Seefeldt Ph.D., is an Associate Professor in the Department of History and Research Director of the Digital Scholarship Lab at Ball State University. Doug is the founding Senior Digital Editor for The Papers of William F. Cody and since 2009 he has co-directed The William F. Cody Archive. In 2013 he launched Cody Studies, a digital scholarship platform that he also edits. Doug spent three years at the University of Virginia as a Woodrow Wilson Academic Postdoctoral Fellow in the Humanities where he worked at the Virginia Center for Digital History and served as Director of UVa’s Lewis & Clark Bicentennial Project. He was recently a 2014-15 Fellow at the Charles Warren Center for Studies in American History at Harvard University where participated in the yearlong “Workshop on Multimedia History and Literature: New Directions in Scholarly Design.”

Rebecca Wingo, Curating Buffalo Bill from Digital Archive to Digital Exhibit

Buffalo Bill loved his audience, and what better venue to reach millions than digital media? I have collaborated on two digital projects for Cody Studies—one on Gertrude Kasebier’s pictorial photographs of Native performers, and one on Buffalo Bill’s artistic legacy—that have changed the way in which Buffalo Bill can reach his audience.

Rebecca S. Wingo is the Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow in Digital Liberal Arts at Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota. She is the co-author of the forthcoming Homesteading the Plains: Towards a New History (2017) and is working on a manuscript about house-building policy and adult education on the Crow Reservation in Montana.