Harrison-Levy Shoot-out


Cheyenne, Wyoming, 1868

Cheyenne, Wyoming, 1868

Harrison-Levy Shoot-out (1877) – On March 9, 1877, gamblers Jim Levy and Charlie Harrison argued over a game of cards in Shingle & Locke’s Saloon in Cheyenne, Wyoming. As the argument escalated, St. Louis gambler and gunfighter, Charlie Harrison, insulted Levy telling him that he hated Irishmen. Levy, who was of Jewish descent, but was from Ireland, quickly took offense and challenged Harrison to take it outside. Harrison, who was an experienced gunfighter, and those looking on, felt sure that Levy would soon be shot dead. However, they didn’t know that Levy also was also an experienced gunfighter with excellent shooting skills. The pair continued their verbal dispute outside, moving in front of the Senate Saloon before finally stopping in front of Frenchy’s on Eddy Street and squared off.

As the two pulled their six-guns, Harrison’s shot went wild. Levy, on the other hand, took more careful aim and kit Harrison who fell to the ground. Though, severely wounded, Harrison was alive and taken to his room at the Dyer’s Hotel. However, a week later, he died.

Levy, who is thought to have survived 16 gunfights, would come to the end of the line in Tucson, Arizona in 1882. Quarrelling once again over cards, this time with faro dealer, John Murphy, in the Fashion Saloon, the pair agreed to solve their differences the next day in a showdown. However, when Levy left the saloon the night before, on June 5, 1882, he was ambushed and killed by Murphy and two of his cohorts.


By Kathy Weiser-Alexander, August, 2017.


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