Harrison-Levy Shoot-out

Cheyenne, Wyoming, 1868

Cheyenne, Wyoming, 1868

Harrison-Levy Shoot-out occurred on March 9, 1877, when 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, an experienced gunfighter, and those looking on felt sure that Levy would soon be shot dead. However, they didn’t know that Levy 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. On the other hand, Levy took more careful aim and hit 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 end the line in Tucson, Arizona, in 1882. Quarreling 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.


© Kathy Alexander/Legends of America, updated November 2022.

Also See:

Adventures in the American West

Gunfighters of the Old West

Old West Gunfights

Old West Photo Galleries