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Wyatt of Texas? Tombstone Tips Issue 46
January 14, 2021

Insider Info Newsletter

January/February 2021 - Issue #46


~ ~ Wyatt Earp at Fort Griffin, Texas

~ ~ Insider Updates

~ ~ The Latest at Tombstone Travel Tips


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Fort Griffin Entrance - Living History

Photo Credit: Larry D.Moore: CC By SA4.0

Wyatt Earp in Fort Griffin, Texas

#1 - Intro

~ ~ Have you heard of the Clear Fork of the Brazos River, about 120 miles West of Fort Worth, Texas? The U.S. 6th Cavalry built Fort Wilson there the summer of 1867, on a plateau. Name changed soon to honor General Charles Griffin.

Bridge Over Clear Fork of Brazos River

Adjacent to Fort Griffin, on State Hwy. 283
Photo Credit - Larry D. Moore: CC By SA4.0

~ ~ The Old West Frontier Town built up around it. But it had a wild reputation, too. Although known as Fort Griffin, it was also called The Flat, as well as Hide Town. Today this is just North of Albany, TX.

~ ~ In 1877 Wyatt Earp, likely bored with Dodge City, looked for alternate earnings. According to Wyatt's later telling, he liked the chance to go after Dirty Dave Rudabaugh. Who'd led a gang to rob a railroad camp. (But historically, there's the possibility per timing, that he was instead tracking the Sam Bass Gang.)

Wyatt Left Dodge City for a Consequential Encounter

Photo Credit: Felix Wong - CC By SA4.0

#2 - Wyatt Arrived in Fort Griffin

~ ~ Wyatt Earp tracked Rudabaugh to Texas in October 1877. Heard he'd been to Wyatt's friend, John Shanssey's Cattle Exchange Saloon [note: some say it was The Bee Hive Saloon] in Fort Griffin.

~ ~ Wyatt checked with Shanssey at the Cattle Exchange. He discovered he'd missed Rudabaugh by a couple of days. But was told the skinny guy at the card table might know where he's headed. That guy was Doc Holliday.

~ ~ Author Stuart Lake gave his input on their meeting. In his Earp biography he said Shannsey warned Wyatt of Doc's "killer" reputation. He thought he'd not like to help out a lawman. But he'd not shown his shooter hand locally. Shanssey said Doc owed him, so he'd vouch for him to help Wyatt.

Fort Griffin Area Locations - About 120 mi. West of Fort Worth

~ ~ Wyatt walked over to ask this guy about Rudabaugh. He introduced himself as a lawman, who was on the trail of this gang of robbers. Doc said they hadn't specified to him where they were going. But he did overhear some conversation.

~ ~ Doc Holliday must have taken a liking to Wyatt Earp, as he was willing to let him in on this information. He said they'd heard they were being tracked. And they spoke of heading back to Kansas, the area of the robbery, since that would be unexpected.

Rudabaugh's Gang was Heading Back to Ford County?

#3 - A Friendship Begins

~ ~ Wyatt Earp responded quickly to that important information. He must have sensed it as truthful from Doc. Wyatt sent off a telegram straight away to Ford County Kansas. Informing the Sheriff that the Rudabaugh gang may have returned. Bat Masterson in turn, was informed.

~ ~ Bat trusted this info, coming from Wyatt Earp. He gathered a posse. They caught them by Lovell’s ranch on the Cherokee Strip. Rudabaugh ended up in prison.

Wyatt Earp with Bat Masterson, c.1876

Photo Courtesy Jack DeMaattos Collection

#4 - Leaving Texas

~ ~ His goal accomplished, Wyatt Earp left this wild west town of Fort Griffin. He returned to Dodge City in January 1878.

~ ~ Did Wyatt not find The Flat exciting enough to stay, even though he had a new-found friend in Doc Holliday? After all, the Fort Griffin History page states "Hide Town, was considered one of the West’s five wildest towns with streets thronging with soldiers, buffalo hunters, drovers, gamblers, saloon girls, surveyors, outlaws, clerks, merchants and ranchers."

From: Brenham Weekly Banner on Fri., Nov. 22, 1878 - Pg. 1

Wyatt Missed This Action
Brenham TX is midway between Austin & Houston

~ ~ Or was it because he was always drawn back to the location of his family members? That being one or more of his brothers. Just as they all gathered together one year later in Tombstone AZ, late in 1879.

~ ~ Historical places & events create curiosity for facts about people who roamed the Tombstone area & the Old West. What's the true story? Can we discover the authentic history?

~ ~ And we enjoy sharing what we find with you.

We hope we'll see you in town sometime, (sigh - eventually in the future!) seeing areas where they spent time - back in the 1800s.

Let us know if you'll be going to an upcoming event! Tell us how you liked any of them, or what you visited here! Just reply to this newsletter for easy input! (Let us know if we can use your comments - & how to credit you.)



~ ~ 1ST - Christmas Holiday Season

~ ~ The light parade was cancelled. Yes, it was for concerns regarding the spread of COVID-19.

~ ~ There were a couple of New Year's celebrations in town. Big Nose Kates, as well as the Oriental in conjunction with The Crystal Palace. They all had limited seats available & bands, but no dancing. Masks required for entry. To be in compliance with AZ health standards.

~ ~ 2ND - 2021 Tombstone Subscriber's Contest

~ ~ Thanks so much to all our subscribers who submitted entries. Difficult deciding on winners, but we devised a point awarding process to make it fair. All subscribers entering submitted many great topics you can expect to see in our upcoming newsletters. We had 6 practice calendars from 3 different publishers to award. They went to:
~ ~ Pete D. (Smokey) of Yuma, AZ
~ ~ Walter T. of Fountain Valley, CA
~ ~ Brenda S.P. of Oceanside, CA
~ ~ Ed R. of Mohave Valley, AZ
~ ~ Christine K. of Flagstaff AZ
~ ~ & Ricardo A. of Temuco, Chile


~ ~ Now for 2021, we've here started our format change to our Tombstone Tips E-Newsletter. Because of time constraints for us, we've begun our Bi-Monthly (alternating months).

~ ~ Our New Schedule: JANUARY/FEBRUARY, MARCH/APRIL, MAY/JUNE, JULY/AUGUST, SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER, NOVEMBER/DECEMBER. Coming out the 2nd Thursday of the First Named Month.


~ ~ Business Shuffle

~ ~ ~ Some Tombstone businesses have moved, or will be moving soon.

~ ~ ~ 1st - Tombstone Oil & Vinegar Co. has been on Allen St., South side between 4th & 5th for awhile. We'd never entered, actually. They've now moved to Fremont St., right after the bend as you enter town. Same building that Vintage Cowgirls of Tombstone recently vacated. It seems Oil & Vinegar has an even further expanded product line. Like CBD oil!

~ ~ ~ 2nd - Vintage Cowgirls of Tombstone has moved from Fremont St. (as mentioned above) into town at 510 E. Allen St., North side between 5th & 6th. If you haven't stopped, we recommend them. We've found many great vintage clothes here at good prices. Some decor relics, too.

~ ~ ~ 3rd - Not a Tombstone authentic, but sometimes helpful: Circle K. We've rarely gone in there. Even possibly thinking of it - the parking lot is such a pain in the butt - we don't. Sometimes it is convenient, because of the hours. They're building a new store directly across the street. On a large lot that's been for sale a long time. I'd always wondered about it, as it had some areas that looked possibly historic? Hope it was investigated before this construction began. Finished, will certainly be more convenient to get into.

Construction for New Circle K - Directly Across From Current


~ ~ Have You Checked Our Website Index?

~ ~ ~ The site index for Tombstone Travel Tips is sort-of like the index in a book. Recently updated to be sure every single page in our website categorized under various headings. This helps anyone find specific pages, for an easier search, if they're not just browsing. Plus there is a Search Box to also enter key words - to get a result to find what you're looking for. We always try to be helpful!

Keep Up With All Our Website Pages
Use Our Site Index

Website Guide Index for TombstoneTravelTips

Covid Related News

~ ~ Tombstone Council Meeting Cancelled

~ ~ ~ On Jan. 6, 2021 Tombstone's Mayor Escapule announced that the Council & the Board of Police Commissioners Meeting to be held on Jan. 12 was cancelled.

~ ~ ~ The reason stated was due to the "overwhelming cases of COVID-19 in Tombstone" & he said it was a "safety precaution."

~ ~ Western Historian Dies Of Covid-19

~ ~ ~ The Wild West History Assoc. announced that Leon Claire Metz passed away Nov. 15, 2019, at age 90. His triumphs: WWHA Advisory Board - Emeritus status, Western history author, El Paso TX radio host - The Leon Metz Show, & many Western history & writer's awards.

~ ~ ~ He'll be missed by his wife Cheryl, 4 children & numerous grandchildren & great grandchildren.

~ ~ Legendary Country Singer Dies

~ ~ ~ Charley Pride passed on Dec. 12, 2020 in Dallas, age 86, from Covid-19 complications. He had a break-through career with 52 Top 10 country hits, Grammy awards, & significant Country Music awards.

~ ~ ~ His signature song is probably regarded as Kiss An Angel Good Mornin’ - the final performance song he sang Nov. 11 at the CMA Awards.

Charley Pride Performing on Nov. 26, 2016

Photo Credit: Republic Country Club by cc-by-2.0 Generic
He's Survived by his wife Ebby Rozene Cohran Pride, 3 children, 5 grandchildren & 2 great-grandchildren

~ ~ AZ COVID-19 - Cochise County & Tombstone AZ

~ ~ ~ Arizona COVID-19 case trends continue worsening.

~ ~ ~ As of Jan. 12, in Cochise County, there've been 9,232 total cases. That's 5,126 new cases over the past 5 weeks. Thus more cases arose in these past 5 wks. than from the start of the pandemic thru Dec. 4.

~ ~ ~ Tombstone zip-code map of Jan. 12 confirms there have been 67 total cases in Tombstone - meaning 47 new cases over the past 5 weeks.

~ ~ ~ Please remember that COVID is a respiratory (airborne) disease. Once contracted, though, may affect many body systems & can have long-lasting effects.

So Please Stay Safe! Keep doing what works is a primary key.
Most effective is wearing a mask & social distancing.
And of Course - Wash Your Hands, Before Touching Your Face, Especially


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Until Next Month,

Karen & Bill McGowan
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