Bold, Brazen and Beautiful women tackled the Wild West

Ponca City Now - September 25, 2015 8:04 am

Dr. Sara Jane Richter of Oklahoma Panhandle State University will speak on the "Bold, Brazen and Beautiful: Non-Traditional Women of the American West" at 10 a.m. Saturday at the Pioneer Woman Museum.

The presentation is by donation. Reservations are encouraged, but not required.

When people think of the females on the frontier of 19th century America, they think of three types of women: the school teacher, the saloon girl, and the farmer’s wife. However, there were other women of the West too, and not all of them fit into these three categories. Women of the day were expected to have men in their lives—to protect them and to take care of them—but not all women had men in their lives—by happenstance or by choice.

What kind of females tackled the West alone? They had to be determined and tenacious, clever and enterprising, or they would not last long. Unattached women had to have the courage to face society’s insults and threats in order to make a living for themselves. Single women were not looked upon favorably; they frighteningly broke society’s standards and stereotypes, and some of them even suffered assaults for being unmarried.

This presentation examines the lives of some single, daring women who chose to live in the manly world of the late 1800’s in the American West—facing the same dangers and opportunities as did their male counterparts. By they way, most of these fiery females got along just fine too, thank you very much.


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