Reviews

“After I started reading it, I could not put it down except to sleep a few hours.

WWW-award-emblem-transIt was a great ‘read,’ and as a western historian, I could not believe that I had never heard of Goldie Griffith Cameron…she certainly deserves to be recognized as more than a bit player in the overall story of the West in times past.”  –Alvin G. Davis, President-Chairman, National Cowboy Symposium & Celebration  more reviews

“Goldie Griffith Cameron was one of the early day cowgirls and lady bronc riders that ‘almost’ got lost in time, if it hadn’t been for Kay Turnbaugh’s interest in her neighbor Goldie’s past. Kay never met Goldie but they both lived in Nederland, Colorado, a town in the Rocky Mountains that once had a population of 5,000 people. Once the tungsten mining market waned so did Nederland. Kay came to the town and started a newspaper there a year after Goldie died, but it didn’t take long before Kay heard enough about this wonderful Goldie character that her curiosity and her ability to write spurred her to tell Goldie’s story. Thank heavens Goldie’s story wasn’t lost because she was present at many early day western significant events and knew many of the people we know helped the American west become important to our history. Sit back and read about Goldie’s life, truly The Last of the Wild West Cowgirls.

Goldie Griffith was born in 1893 and raised in the Chicago area. When she was just a girl she began her career in show business. She joined Blanche Whitney’s Lady Athletes that gave wrestling exhibitions. Wrestling was not considered a lady-like sport but they got much attention from the crowd. The Appalachian Exposition in Knoxville, Tennessee, was one of the venues that had hired the women athletes as well as the Mulhall Wild West Show. Goldie’s curiosity got the best of her and she met Charlie Mulhall who introduced her to the show and his famous sister Lucille. Goldie had an interest in becoming a lady bronc rider and Charlie encouraged her. Not long after that Goldie got a job with the 101 Miller Wild West show when she lied and said she could ride broncs. From there she truly became a lady bronc rider and much more and soon was invited to join Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show. In fact, her wedding to another performer was held during Buffalo Bill’s Show at Madison Square Garden in New York City. Although Goldie wasn’t even sure she wanted to be married she went along with the aged entrepreneur’s suggestion and marketing idea. The ceremony was held on horseback during the 1913 show with 8,000 spectators looking on. Her wedding dress, red buckskin, was adorned with beads made by the Indian women in the show. Her entire married life to Harry was a series of bad experiences but she tried to make it work and convince herself she’d not made a mistake. Finally she’d had enough when she raised her gun and tried to shoot him.

The experiences Goldie had during her life in show business and ranching will keep you turning pages until you finish the book and wish there were more. The author truly captures the true spirit of the early day lady bronc rider and cowgirl.The book is $18.95 and available through Amazon.com or barnesandnoble.com.”

Gail Woerner, Rodeo Attitude News

“Former owner of Nederland’s Mountain-Ear newspaper Kay Turnbaugh explores the life of little-known Western performer and entrepreneur Goldie Griffith, who is now buried in Boulder’s Green Mountain Cemetery. It’s frankly surprising that Griffith is not better known — she was a boxer, fencer and wrestler who took up bronc-busting and who was “given away” in marriage by none other than Buffalo Bill Cody at Madison Square Garden. Turnbaugh’s journalistic background serves her well in this lively, history-packed volume.”

Clay Evans, Boulder Daily Camera

“I very much enjoyed The Last of the Wild West Cowgirls. It is a well-researched blend of fact and informed imagination that brings to life the story of a very independent and colorful woman. Goldie Griffith: wrestler, cowgirl, bronc rider, entrepreneur and feminist. What a woman!”

–Steve Friesen, Director, Buffalo Bill Museum, Lookout Mountain, Golden, Colorado


“Turnbaugh’s descriptions of a novice climbing aboard a horse that is trained to buck reveals the depth of her research, and her ability to create a feel for the action that took place almost 100 years ago. You can taste the dust in Goldie’s mouth, feel the sweat dribbling down her chest and smell the corral, the horse energy….The book puts one into the center of the struggles of a traveling show, the amazing effort of transporting hundreds of people and livestock, including elephants, across the country in railroad cars….The book is an historic gem that was just waiting to be written.

–Barbara Lawlor, The Mountain-Ear