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Miss Nancy

Miss Nancy

When Miss Nancy was a young girl, she spent her Summers at her uncle's mansion in New Rochelle. He came from a relatively wealthy family. He enjoyed hunting and liked to display his trophies from his excursions around the world. He had just come back from South Africa, as he was also an English military officer during the first Boer War and told her stories about a rhino that terrorized his battalion. The stories were fascinating, but she always felt a little uncomfortable when she saw all the taxidermy in his study. She was especially spooked by the large bison head that was mounted over the fireplace. There was something about the sad, fixed gaze that bothered her.

One Sunday afternoon during a garden party, she was getting bored with her uncle's guests and went back inside the house. She thought she heard voices coming from the study and had to investigate. Just outside the pocket doors she could hear a muffled conversation. When she slid the doors open, the room was quiet. All the taxidermy seemed to be staring at her. She looked at the bison head over the fireplace and thought she heard it say, "no one speaks for us" It was right then and there, that she decided once she was old enough, she would "speak" for the bison.

She went out west in the 1880's and became an aggressive anti-hunting advocate. After many skirmishes with hunters and cattleman she became a wanted outlaw in the states of Wyoming, Montana, and Nebraska.


Image: Travis Louie (American, b 1964), Miss Nancy, 2014, acrylic on board, 20 x 16 inches, courtesy of William Baczek Fine Arts

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