A Beautician Bronc Rider – Tillie Baldwin

Anna Mathilda Winger aka Tillie Baldwin was born in Arendal, Norway.  Immigrating to the United States when she was just 14 years old, her first profession in the United States was as a hair dresser.  Her entertainment career began in 1909 when she joined Captain Jack Baldwin’s Wild West show.  She created her stage name, Tillie Baldwin and began a journey that led her to become a champion bronc rider, trick rider, relay racer, roman racer and even one all-around title. In 1910 she worked with Will Rogers Vaudeville show and by 1911 she began rodeo by riding broncs. Her first entry in the bronc riding in Los Angeles, California, resulted in her winning the competition.

1912 was a good year for Tilly when she won the Lady Bronc Riding Championship at Los Angeles, and at the Pendleton Round-Up in Pendleton, Oregon.  At Pendleton, she also won the Ladies Trick and Fancy Riding Championship, and her All-Round title. Like many cowgirls she also worked in other jobs, during rodeo’s off-season.  Tillie worked for the 101 Ranch Wild West Show from 1912 to 1925, and from 1908 to 1916 as a hairdresser.

At the inaugural rodeo in Winnipeg, Alberta in 1913, Tillie bulldogged steers and won the Roman Racing event. She was the only woman to ride in the all-male Roman Racing event at the 1913 Winnipeg Stampede where she won the race.

Baldwin Winnipeg 1913
Description: Roman race, Winnipeg Stampede, Manitoba. L-R riders: Johnnie Mullins; Tillie Baldwin; A. J. Bryson. August 9-13, 1913 Postmark: Winnipeg, Man., 1913-08-16 University of Alberta Libraries under the Attribution – Non-Commercial – Creative Commons license.

In 1927, she became an instructor at the Star Riding Academy in New London, Connecticut.  When she retired from rodeo, Tillie lived in Connecticut until she died in 1958 when she was 70 years old.


Lady Bronc Riding Champion

Los Angeles 1912, 1913

Pendleton Round-Up 1912

New York Stampede 1916

Ladies Trick and Fancy Riding Champion 

Pendleton Round-Up 1912

Los Angeles 1913

Winnipeg Stampede 1913

New York Stampede 1916

All-Around Champion

Pendleton Round-Up 1912

Los Angeles 1913

Roman Racing (all-male race except for Tillie)                                                                           Winnipeg Stampede 1913

Tillie was inducted into the National Cowgirl Hall of Fame in 2000 and into the National Cowboy Hall of Fame in 2004

3 thoughts on “A Beautician Bronc Rider – Tillie Baldwin

  1. So love this we did a reunion for Will Rogers sub in 2018 got to see where he was born have lots of books about him and how many people he helped so this was very interesting thank you Kim

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I delivered the New London Day to Tillie Slates house on four-mile river road Niantic Ct. Her husband William Slate was the brother of Elizabeth Smith who raised me during WWII while my father was serving in the Army. She used to invite me in to listen to records on her old RCA crank up record player. After she passed her husband gave me the record player. She also sponsored a 19 year old Norwegian girl Connie who later marries her ex-husband .

    Liked by 1 person

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