But Weren’t Cowboys Good?

Everyone knows that the cowboys were the greatest heroes of the Wild West. The overwhelming evidence of the silver screen cannot be contradicted. Or can it? The modern conception of cowboys is along the lines of a John Wayne character- tough, a little rough around the edges, and perhaps overly bellicose, but still the goodContinue reading “But Weren’t Cowboys Good?”

The Cowboy and His Honor

“You’re a liar!” “No, I ain’t!” “Just lied again in denying it!” “Insult me once more, and I’ll plant you in boot hill!” We all know how this ends. On the surface, it seems to be a couple of cantankerous cowboys who are just spoiling for a fight. They seize on any little thing andContinue reading “The Cowboy and His Honor”

Gunfighters in the Wild West

The typical Western movie or novel ends with a glamorous gunfight on a dusty street. What could be more romantic, than a chance to publicly vindicate yourself, and have a few dozen witnesses to your proficiency with a gun? But did it ever actually happen? Wild Bill Hickok had public fight on the Springfield, MissouriContinue reading “Gunfighters in the Wild West”

Big Medicine in the Wild West

In the early days of the Wild West, a band of Indians approached a priest and requested that he baptize them. The padre was delighted. However, to fulfill church policy, he inquired into the braves’ desire for baptism. The bronzed warriors replied that they wanted the Spanish medicine. (Medicine, to the Indians, was anything thatContinue reading “Big Medicine in the Wild West”