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Legends Letter

July, 2007


Kathy Weiser - Cowgirl DrawingWell after my foray into Arizona, followed by several weeks of trying to catch up, I take off to down to our little bitty ole' Lake Shack at the Ozarks for a little R&R and a lot of lake shack work -- renovation and restoration -- does that apply to lake shacks?  Dunno 'bout that, but a little physical labor always has a good effect on uncluttering the mind.


Then back to K.C. for a few days of more catch-up before dashing off to Dallas, Texas. Hubby Dave in meetings while I try to find day trip opportunities. Whew, that's a lot of work -- day tripping out of Dallas -- getting thru traffic in and out of town takes longer than arriving at the final destination. One 150 mile trip took 12 hours, a good portion of which was stuck in traffic. Yuck! Yuck! Yuck! Nope, no more of that!! Destination objective: out of the way places!  Focus, Kathy, focus.


Well, here I am once again, carrying on about my "adventures." Got lots of feedback about our "scary" trip along the Mexican border several weeks ago. Though I do "take on," believe me, I'm loving every minute of it!!


On a different note, I finally got my first book published -- Great American Bars and Saloons . Whew!! That was an adventure in and of itself. Was "hired" to write the captions for a Saloon Book, to be published under my name. Though my part was "done" within days, it took forever to hear anything about publishing. In fact, when I finally got paid, I never heard another word. Ok, so they couldn't find a publisher, I figured. Well, that was until Dave was snooping on the internet and discovered that not only was it published, it was published like almost a year ago!! More on that fiasco on my blog HERE! Anyway, it is kind of exciting, nonetheless.

In any event, guess I better get to writing up some new material and finishing this here newsletter.

In the meantime, I truly hope you enjoy the newsletter and the website!!


Kathy Weiser, Owner/Editor





In this Edition: 


New Additions


Featured Travel Destination - Gold Point, Nevada


The Old West - Forts, Forts & More Forts


Featured Book - Great American Bars & Saloons


Ghosts & Mysteries - The Haunted Bullock Hotel in Deadwood




Bumper Sticker Wisdom 


EARTH FIRST!  We'll strip-mine the other planets later.


I had a handle on life but it broke.


Shhh ... I'm listening to a book.




New Additions to Legends of America



It's been a busy month and you'll find a lot of new stuff here as I try to diversify a little and add some new Old West People, treasure tales, and destinations.


Our favorite, those Old West characters, now includes Buckshot Robert's Last Stand, where one man was in a gunfight with six skilled gunslingers in Lincoln County, New Mexico; Charles Angelo Siringo, one of the most famous detectives of the Pinkerton National Detective Agency; and Gordon William "Pawnee Bill" Lillie, a wild west performer that gave Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show some stiff competition. From our reader, Allen Bristow, comes the tale of James L. Smith, a lawman and long-time railroad detective who was better known as "Whispering Smith." And, last but not least, a fascinating tale of a little boy named Jimmy "Santiago" McKinn, who was captured by the Apache in 1885 and cried when he was rescued and had to go home.


While I was delving into Apache "territory," I also added up a new Apache Photo Gallery, which features great vintage photographs and summaries of Apache life in the 19th century, including Geronimo, Mangas Coloradas, the Chiricahua "great mountain" Apache, and more. You'll also find a page, filled with vintage photographs, dedicated to just the fierce Apache Chief

Geronimo, who was probably the most photographed Native American of the time. Many of you love to read about Native American Myths and Legends, so, focusing on the Apache, we've added up several new legends including Old Woman White Hands,

Killing Of The Monsters, The Man Who Helped the Eagles, Releasing the Buffalo, and The Supernatural Person in the Lake.


While I was in Texas a couple of weeks ago, I just had to visit Fort Griffin, one of the wildest places in the Lone Start State during the 19th century. (This was the 12 hour trip from Dallas.) In fact, in 1874, the place was so bad that the commander of the fort placed the town under its control, declaring martial law and forcing many of the undesirable residents to leave. Not a lot left of this old place, but a fascinating history. Texas," I also added up a few more of those many squabbles they were so fond of in the 19th century -- the Lee-Peacock Feud, which was more than just a dispute between families, but a continuation of the Civil War, lasting four bloody years after the rest of the nation had laid down their arms. You'll also find the El Paso Salt War that occurred over the salt flats of the Guadalupe Mountains.


For our treasure hunting enthusiasts, you'll find new Utah Treasure Tales, including the Spring Canyon Treasure and Hidden Loot in Winters Quarters from our reader, Chuck Zehnder, and a couple of more we dug up -- the White Cliffs Lost Gold Ledge and the Castle Gate Lost Treasure. Hold tight, we've just started with Utah - there will be more!!


And, last, but not least, there's my new book. Check out Great American Bars and Saloons HERE!


Time to mosey.


Did you know?......


Every plant in Tomorrowland at Disneyland is edible.


North Dakota grows more sunflowers than any other state.


Kool-Aid was invented by Edwin Perkins in 1927 in Hastings, Nebraska.



Old West Wisdom


Tumbleweeds are best left to themselves.


Don't run down narrow stairs when your wearing spurs.


Never get up before breakfast. If you have to get up before breakfast, eat breakfast first.


Never let your yearnin's' get ahead of your earnin's.


Featured Travel Destination 



Gold Point Main StreetGold Point, Nevada - Waxing & Waning Thru Time


The area that would become Gold Point, one of Nevada's best ghost towns, was first settled by  ranchers and a few miners around 1880. A small camp was formed a few hundred yards west of the present day town site at an outcropping of limestone, and was called Lime Point. 


When new discoveries of both gold and silver established the major mining towns of Tonapah and Goldfield, Nevada in the early 1900s, a flood of prospectors returned to the old Lime Point mining camp to try their luck.


In 1902 silver was discovered in the area and within no time, the old camp was revived and renamed Hornsilver for a particularly rich source of ore.


In 1905, the Great Western Mine Company began operations about a half mile southeast of Hornsilver and after discovering a rich silver vein, another flock of miners descended on the camp. The town soon sported  numerous businesses sprouted up, including as many as 13 saloons, a population of around 1,000, and over 225 wood-framed buildings, tents and shacks throughout the camp.


Unfortunately, the town’s original founders didn’t find the boomtown they had hoped for, as the strike proved to be short lived. Though limited mining continued over the years, the town died as quickly as it was born.


Today, many of the buildings in this old camp have been restored

and two museums are available to the public on most weekends. 


Gold Point is about 40 miles southwest of Goldfield off of highway 95. It is well worth the trip for a view of an authentic turn of the century mining camp.


More ...


What our readers are saying about Legends of America:


A subject as broad and diverse as early American history would be beyond the scope of most people, but you have done a superb job. I can't say it better than that - superb. You have enriched my understanding and whetted my appetite for more. Many thanks and continued success for this wonderful venture. - Jumbuk, Victoria, Australia


I found your site to be awesome. from the Old West photos you have & the stories that are told about them. I'm a Jesse James buff & I've found that your story is the closest to being the truth than any other site I've seen. So, it makes me trust your stories about other outlaws as well. Thank you for the info. - Michael, Missouri


I found this site to be the most informative historical site concerning the Indian Territory and western Arkansas that I have seen. The era of the Civil War to the early 1900's is very much of interest to me. I think it is a fantastic site. - James, Arkansas


Tell us what you think!

View our guestbook 

The Old West


Alcatraz IslandForts, Forts, and More Forts!! - The forts of the American West varied in type from military posts, to fortresses established by fur trading companies, to private enterprises built solely to protect the pioneers within.


Most often when we think of Old West forts, we imagine a high stockade type wall of sharpened logs that surround a number of buildings. Inside these walls are hardy pioneers and soldiers, valiantly defending themselves from hostile Indians on the outside. Though western films have perpetuated this idea, and sometimes forts were built in a stockade type manner, the purpose and style of forts varied widely and this "typical" scenario was the exception rather than the rule.


Contrary to the myths perpetuated by western films, most military forts of the American West were not established to protect the settlers from Indians; rather, they were built to maintain peace among the tribes, as well as between Native Americans and white emigrants.


Furthermore, they were seldom solidly constructed stockades with numerous permanent buildings. Sometimes, they were little more than a couple of blockhouses. Other types of fortifications were constructed by traders to protect their businesses and by settlers to protect their homes.

As more and more settlers moved west in the 19th century Army posts were established on the basis of anticipated use, sometimes to keep the Indian tribes from waging war with each other and at other times, to keep white settlers from encroaching upon native lands.

It was generally only when white settlers insisted on encroaching upon native lands, especially during the many gold and silver rushes, that the Indians retaliated. Only then did the forts' primary purpose change to protecting the settlers. As westward expansion continued, threatening the Indian's livelihood, war between the whites and Indians intensified, resulting in the push of Native Americans onto reservations. Once the Indians were placed on reservations, some forts served as Indian agencies and distribution points for annuities given to tribes under treaty agreements. 

More ...

I see these many old forts kind of like ghost towns and there are so many!! So, stay tuned, as you see more and more of them added up here on the website. For a list of those we've covered so far, see List of Forts.


Old West Factoids:

On September 6, 1870 Louisa Ann Swain, a seventy-year-old woman, becomes the first woman in America to vote in a public election at Laramie, Wyoming

The main characters of the Dalton Gang -- brothers, Grat, Bob and Emmett all wore badges before moving to the other side of the law.

Clay Allison, after sitting in a dentist's chair in Cheyenne, Wyoming, forcibly pulled one of the dentist’s teeth when he doctor drilled on the wrong molar. He would have continued pulling the dentists teeth, but the screams of the dentist brought in people from the street.

On August 19, 1884 John H. 'Doc' Holliday shot bartender Billy Allen in the arm over $5 at Leadville, Colorado


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Ghosts & Mysteries


Bullock Hotel, Deadwood, South DakotaThe Haunted Bullock Hotel in Deadwood, South Dakota - When Deadwood "struck gold" in 1876, not everyone flocked there to make their fortunes in the mines. For Seth Bullock and Sol Star, they intended to make their fortune supplying the miners with their equipment needs. And, that they did prosperously. However, after the second time Deadwood and their hardware store suffered from a blazing fire, the pair changed tactics and built the Bullock Hotel. In 1895, Seth Bullock, who had formerly served as sheriff during Deadwood's early and lawless days, began building the finest hotel Deadwood had ever seen.


When it was complete it boasted a restaurant that could seat 100 people and offered such delicacies as pheasant and lobster. The large lobby featured red velvet carpeting, brass chandeliers, oak trim and a Steinway grand piano. Upstairs, the 63 rooms were furnished with oak dressers and brass beds, each floor had a bathroom, and a library and parlor were located off the balcony. In no time at all, the hotel was the most sought after luxury hotel of its time.


Completely renovated, the Bullock Hotel continues to host guests in its original  historic appearance and grandeur. But, according to staff and guests, tourists are not the only ones to continue to visit the historic property.


Seemingly, Seth Bullock, himself, continues to look after the property. The tall ghostly figure of Bullock has been spied in  various areas of the hotel, he has been heard whistling or humming a tune, plates and glasses have been known to shake and take flight in the restaurant, and all manner of strange occurences, all attributed to Bullock.


More ...


Featured Book:

Great American Bars and Saloons by Kathy WeiserGreat American  Saloons

By Kathy Weiser

  My first venture into the publishing world takes you into the many watering holes of America's past, particularly the numerous saloons that sprouted up during our nation's Wild West days. Hardcover, 2006, 224 Pages. Signed by ME!!



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