Dogs of the Old West

There’s a photograph of Molly Fly (wife of Camillus Fly, yes the same one that had the photography studio at the site of the Gunfight at the O.K. Corral) that was taken in Tombstone, AZ. By Mollie’s feet is a Redbone Coonhound. The photograph started me thinking about dogs out West. In the film Tombstone, Morgan and Wyatt are shown in the Oriental feeding noodles to a hound dog, but was there ever an Earp hound like the one in the film?  Continue reading “Dogs of the Old West”

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An Inspiring Painting

I was really inspired by the painting of Wild Bill by N.C. Wyeth. It was on the cover of a compilation of western stories I owned back when I was in college. The guy at the back of the painting caught my eye. He looked the way I imagined Doc Holliday should have looked back in the day. Perhaps it’s one of the side-effects of loving the film Tombstone. Now I’m not sure Doc would have looked quite like that, but one thing’s for sure, that painting inspired me to write the following gambling scene in A Wicked Little Town.  Continue reading “An Inspiring Painting”

Dodge City Tales – The Dead Lawyer

Dodge City has some fantastic stories, especially regarding pranks that some of the gamblers would play on unsuspecting citizens. The Dodge City Gang as they were referred to included well-known names such as Luke Short, Bat Masterson and Wyatt Earp. One of my favorite stories is about a  prank that was played on a lawyer that had recently arrived in Dodge City. After getting drunk and passing out, he awoke to find himself laid out in a casket with a funeral service underway. I couldn’t resist this story and chose to include it as part of my Doc Holliday book, A Gentleman in Hell. Continue reading “Dodge City Tales – The Dead Lawyer”

500 Must Be a Peach of a Hand – A guide to gambling in the Old West

Poker is the most famous type of gambling that’s depicted in western movies. Who can forget Doc Holliday’s opening scene in Tombstone where he stabs Ed Bailey before raking in a fortune of coins and jewellery. It’s not just the movies though, Wild Bill Hickock’s unfortunate departure from the world while clutching aces and eights only helped to fuel the stereotype of the western gambler, but what was it actually like to be a gambler like Doc Holliday? Continue reading “500 Must Be a Peach of a Hand – A guide to gambling in the Old West”

The Story Behind the Story

Since I love horses and will watch most westerns because of the horses, the films Tombstone and Wyatt Earp were a great escape for me. But it wasn’t the horses that hooked me, it was Doc Holliday. He was an absolute obsession. Both Val Kilmer and Dennis Quaid did a wonderful job of portraying Doc’s character but I couldn’t help thinking that something was missing from the character. I wanted to find out what that was. Continue reading “The Story Behind the Story”