Thursday, May 8, 2008


Just came from the AHAF meeting where Lynn Monroy did another of her presentations on Tombstone, Az. So far she has introduced us to Wyatt Earp, Doc Holiday, Ike Clanton and Johnny Ringo. She has done a lot of research on each of them, gotten samples of their handwriting and thrown in the history of Tombstone making for some interesting meetings.
Tonight we learned much about Sheriff John Behan and some time later we will go over Virgil and his wife. Wyatt was married when the sheriff traveled to San Francisco to bring to Tombstone Josephine (Sadie) Marcus. However, when they arrived and she met Wyatt they fell in love. It wasn't long before Wyatt left his common-law wife Mattie and Wyatt and Josephine lived openly together.
What a blow this must have been to Behan who was already in competition with the Earps over control of Tombstone. The sheriff was an elected official but Wyatt was a marshall, an appointed position. So Behan sided with the "Cowboys" who's voting power could keep him in office. Now understand at this time the Cowboys were not just men who worked on the ranches but a fairly lawless bunch who would rustle cattle, raid into Mexico or come into town and shoot it up when they got drunk. In fact, the former sheriff was shot trying to take the gun from a cowboy who was "shooting at the moon" while drunk.
Someone asked how Wyatt came to be the most know of the Earps when actually Virgil was the elder of the two but we could see from his writing that Wyatt was a quick thinking man who had a "my way or the highway" attitude. The Earps, Doc Holiday and Sheriff Behan were educated men who were intelligent, analytical and fast thinking. There the resemblance takes a turn into other directions. Doc, maybe because of his pain and definitely because he had no fear of dying often provoked others just because he wanted to do so. Sheriff Behan misused his authority not only because he could but also because he did not know how to properly handle it. Each of the Earps also had divergent styles and opinions which show up in their writing but we have not finished looking at all of them as yet.
All I can say is , "Well done Lynn, we look forward to the rest."

No comments: