Wild West enthusiast and artist, Nicholas Eggenhofer, was born in Bavaria, Germany, in 1897. At a young age, he was fascinated by romantic depictions of the American West. In 1913, Eggenhofer’s family immigrated to New Jersey. At nineteen, he took night classes at Cooper Union and apprenticed at American Lithograph Company during the day. Eggenhofer made a living as an illustrator for a publisher of western pulp magazines, Street and Smith. In 1925, Eggenhofer travelled to the West for the first time and eventually settled in Cody, Wyoming.
Eggenhofer produced thousands of realistic sketches of Native Americans, cowboys, and outlaws, some of which were used as illustrations for books about the region. He also focused on transportation used in the West. Today Eggenhofer is celebrated for his passionate commitment to research in order to accurately depict the Old West. His achievements include an honor from the National Cowboy Hall of Fame in 1975, as well as exhibits at Buffalo Bill’s Historical Center.