The Buffalo Hall of Fame honors those who have done the most to restore the American bison, and if it weren’t for the Buffalo Hall of Fame, the National Buffalo Museum would not exist. The Hall of Fame was established in the 1980s by the National Buffalo Foundation (NBF), a national organization whose mission is to be the trusted source for bison research and education funding. In the early 1990s, the NBF was looking for a museum to house its growing number of collections items, as well as the Buffalo Hall of Fame. At the same time, the North Dakota Buffalo Foundation was developing plans for a bison interpretive center in Jamestown, North Dakota. The National Buffalo Museum was established in 1991, in large part as the result of an agreement between these two organizations, and today the Buffalo Hall of Fame is one of the hallmarks of the National Buffalo Museum.
That being said, the Hall of Fame does not always get the attention it deserves by members and visitors alike. The museum is taking steps to change this. Keep reading to learn the “who, what, when, where, and why” of the Buffalo Hall of Fame.
Who. There are several “whos” – the first of these are the Hall of Fame honorees themselves. These are individuals who have done the most to restore the American bison. They can be contemporary figures (like Ted Turner, former CNN mogul, conservationist, and owner of the largest private bison herd in the world) or historical figures (like former US President Theodore Roosevelt, whose relationship with bison transformed from hunter to ardent conservationist). The next of the “whos” are the individuals in charge of inducting these people into the Hall of Fame. That prestigious job belongs to the NBF Board of Directors.
What. The Buffalo Hall of Fame honors those who have done the most to restore the American bison. In an abstract sense, the Hall of Fame is a list of people. In a more concrete sense though, the Hall of Fame is a museum exhibit that tells a story of these individuals and their accomplishments. One component of that exhibit is an interactive digital kiosk.
When. The Buffalo Hall of Fame began in 1980 and since its inception has inducted 11 historic and 17 contemporary honorees. Individuals can still be inducted into the Hall of Fame. A contemporary and a historic honoree were inducted this month!
Where. The National Buffalo Museum in Jamestown, North Dakota, is the Buffalo Hall of Fame’s home base. The museum has a permanent exhibit that helps tell the story of the Hall of Fame and its inductees to its visitors.
Why. The mission of the National Buffalo Museum is to educate the public on the cultural and historical significance of the American bison and the Buffalo Hall of Fame honors those who have done the most to restore the American bison.
Finally, we’re excited to announce that the Buffalo Hall of Fame has been updated and we invite you to come and check out the new exhibit and learn about the individuals past and present who have contributed to America’s most successful conservation story.