Craig resident Barb Baker, 81, points to a photo of her father, Richard “Dick” Barker, dressed as Buster Brown, a promotional persona of the Brown Shoe Company. Baker gave the rights to her father’s memoirs of his time as Buster Brown and helped write portions of a book being published by the Museum of Northwest Colorado about Barker.
Jan Gerber, assistant director of the Museum of Northwest Colorado, holds up a copy Tuesday of the book “Richard Barker: Buster Brown and the Cowboy,” which depicts the life of Barker as the promotional persona for the Brown Shoe Company and his life as a cowboy in the Little Snake River Valley of Wyoming. Gerber hopes to publish 2,000 copies of the book by Christmas and sell them nationally.
Richard Barker, shown here as a youth, is dressed like the Brown Shoe Company’s promotional cartoon, Buster Brown. Barker impersonated the cartoon and appeared in advertising shows until he was 14, but had dreams of moving to the West to become a cowboy.
Richard Barker is shown on a horse in the 1950s. Barker settled in the Little Snake River Valley area of Wyoming in 1923 with his wife, Virginia. He died in Craig in 1976 at the age of 76.
An advertisement featuring Buster Brown and his dog, Tige, from the early 20th century. Before the artist who drew Buster Brown sold rights to the cartoon to the Brown Shoe Company, his image appeared in newspaper comic strips around the nation.
Pictured is the front of a comic book featuring Buster Brown and his dog, Tige.
Pictured is a promotional post card featuring Buster Brown and his dog, Tige, from the early 20th century.