William "Buffalo Bill" Cody hunts buffalo to feed construction crew of Kansas Pacific Railroad

Finally, in 1867, Cody took up the trade that gave him his nickname, hunting buffalo to feed the construction crews of the Kansas Pacific Railroad.

By his own count, he killed 4,280 head of buffalo in seventeen months. He is supposed to have won the name "Buffalo Bill" in an eight-hour shooting match with a hunter named William Comstock, presumably to determine which of the two Buffalo Bill’s deserved the title.

William Frederick ("Buffalo Bill") got his nickname after he undertook a contract to supply Kansas Pacific Railroad workers with buffalo meat. The nickname originally referred to Bill Comstock.[1] Cody earned the nickname by killing 4,860 American Bison (commonly known as buffalo) in eight months (1867-68).[2] He and Comstock eventually competed in a shooting match over the exclusive right to use the name, which Cody won.

Part of this time he spent scouting for Indians, and the remainder was spent gathering and killing bison for them and the Kansas Pacific Railroad. In January 1872 Cody was a scout for Grand Duke Alexei Alexandrovich of Russia's highly publicized royal hunt.[5]

After the war Cody worked as a stage driver from Fort Kearny to Plum Creek. In 1867 he was employed as a scout by General George A. Custer. This was followed by obtaining a contract to kill buffalo for the company supplying the food for the men building the Union Pacific Railroad. Cody later boasted of killing 4,280 buffalo in seventeen months, using a 50-clibre breech-loading Springfield rifle. Although most people thought this was a wild exaggeration he was given the nickname Buffalo Bill.