Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Earps and Clantons and McLowerys

We spent our second and final day mostly in Boot Hill and at the OK Corral. In between we managed to check out a few of the museums and soak up the local lore.

Not much more to say about the place. We had fun and one and a half days was about the right investment of time and money.

A couple of final notes, the room we had at the motel is dedicated to Sheriff Johnny Behan, lover of Sadie Marcus, who later became Wyatt Earp's wife, and, ironically, what killed this desert town was water. Not long after the silver strikes miners hit water and by 1909 they could no longer pump the water out in a way that was economically feasible. What saved the town was in the 1920s when publicity about the dying frontier brought Hollywood here.

Next, the west Texas town of El Paso.

Unfortunately we did not take the stagecoach tour, seemed more interesting or colorful than the one we did the day before

Boothill, the final resting place of Billy Clanton and the McLaury brothers. The town cemetary was researched and restored by town Boy Scouts in the 1950s

An interesting story here. In the 1980s C. David Huerta, a Yaqui Indian, who was also a judge and community college chancellor, came across the history of a Jewish burial ground in Tombstone and worked with Arizona Jews to erect this memorial

The most famous epitaph

The Clantons and McLaurys plan mayhem

Doc Holliday and town marshall Virgil Earp confer
The 30 second shootout commences. According to legend, after the fight Doc returned home to tearfully tell his wife, Big Nose Kate that it was  "awful, just awful." Thirty-eight shots were fired in the street, not in the corral, as legend has it. Our motel is probably not more than 100 feet from the scene.

Earp and Holliday over the body of one of the McLaurys

Tourists posing with the Earps who promised to return the young woman between them to her family in the morning

The resurrected bad guys were less of a draw (so to speak)

Pa drives a buggy down from boothill

The territorial county courthouse, probably the grandest building in the town. It was built in 1882 at a cost of $48,000. In comparison, just a few years later in San Francisco the Haas family of merchant grocers built their house for half that.

The (recreated) gallows behind on which seven men were hanged

The Tombstone Epitaph still prints, though presumably not on this equipment

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