A Pony Express rider at the same time as Cody, the lawman and gunfighter (real name James) performed on stage with his show business buddy, but then retreated to Dakota Territory’s gold fields where he was shot in the fourth episode of Deadwood.
The Native American chief that united Sioux tribes and defeated General Custer at the Battle of Little Big Horn; after later surrendering to protect his people, he was allowed off his reservation to appear in Cody’s show.
Cody named his only son Kit Carson Cody, after the frontiersman, trapper, and soldier made famous from dime novels, then wrote a myth-building biography of him after both the boy and the original Carson died.
As a warrior during the nineteenth century period of forced relocations and military campaigns, the Apache leader was eventually made a prisoner of war but allowed to appear in a show similar to Cody’s, one Bill later partnered with.
Cody’s early collaborator launched a competing Wild West show when the two feuded, then moved on to a diving horse act, one immortalized in the Disney movie Wild Hearts Can’t Be Broken.