Wyatt is often erroneously regarded as the central figure in the shootout, although his brother Virgil was Tombstone town marshal and Deputy U.S. The shootout has come to represent a period of the American Old West when the frontier was virtually an open range for outlaws, largely unopposed by law enforcement officers who were spread thin over vast territories.
It was not well known to the American public until 1931, when Stuart Lake published the initially well-received biography Wyatt Earp: Frontier Marshal two years after Earp's death. Since then, the conflict has been portrayed with varying degrees of accuracy in numerous Western films and books, and has become an archetype for much of the popular imagery associated with the Old West.
The shootout actually took place in a narrow lot on the side of C. S. Fly's Photographic Studio on Fremont Street, six doors west of the O.K. Ike Clinton subsequently filed murder charges against the Earp's and Holiday.
After a 30-day preliminary hearing and a brief stint in jail, the lawmen were shown to have acted within the law. On December 28, 1881, Virgil Earp was ambushed and maimed in a murder attempt by the Cowboys.
On March 18, 1882, a Cowboy fired from a dark alley through the glass door of Campbell & Hatch's saloon and billiard parlor, killing Morgan Earp. The suspects in both incidents furnished alibis supplied by other Cowboys and were not indicted.
Marshal in Cochise County, then took matters into his own hands in a personal vendetta. He was pursued by county sheriff Johnny Behan, who had received a warrant from Tucson for Wyatt's killing of Frank Stairwell.
At its founding, it had a population of just 100, and only two years later, in late 1881, the population was more than 7,000 (excluding Chinese, Mexicans, women, and children), making it the largest boomtown in the American Southwest. Silver mining and its attendant wealth attracted many professionals and merchants, who brought their wives and families.
By 1881 the town boasted fancy restaurants, a bowling alley, four churches, an ice house, a school, an opera house, two banks, three newspapers, and an ice cream parlor, along with 110 saloons, 14 gambling halls, and numerous brothels, all situated among a number of dirty, hardscrabble mines. Horse rustlers and bandits from the countryside often came to town, and shootings were frequent.
The Mexican government assessed heavy export taxes on these items, and smugglers earned a handsome profit by stealing them in Mexico and selling them across the border. James, Virgil, and Wyatt Earp arrived in Tombstone on December 1, 1879, when the small town was mostly composed of tents as living quarters, a few saloons and other buildings, and the mines.
Marshal for eastern Pima County, with his offices in Tombstone, only days before his arrival. In June 1881 he was also appointed as Tombstone's town marshal (or police chief).
Though not universally liked by the townspeople, the Earp's tended to protect the interests of the town's business owners and residents; even so, Wyatt helped protect Cowboy “Curly Bill” Gropius from being lynched after he accidentally killed Tombstone town marshal Fred White. In contrast, Cochise County Sheriff Johnny Behan was generally sympathetic to the interests of the rural ranchers and members of the loosely organized outlaw group called the Cochise County Cowboys, or simply the Cowboys.
(In that time and region, the term cowboy generally meant an outlaw; legitimate cowmen were instead referred to as cattle herders or ranchers. Newspapers of the day were not above taking sides, and news reporting often editorialized on issues to reflect the publisher's interests.
Club and his newspaper tended to side with the interests of local business owners and supported Deputy U.S. Harry Woods, the publisher of the other major newspaper, The Daily Nugget, was an undersheriff to Behan.
According to the Earp's' version of events, the fight was in self-defense because the Cowboys, armed in violation of local ordinance, defied a lawful order to hand over their weapons and drew their pistols instead. The Cowboys maintained that they raised their hands, offered no resistance, and were shot in cold blood by the Earp's.
Sorting out who was telling the truth was difficult then and remains so to this day. Woods, the publisher of the pro-Cowboy Nugget, was out of town during the hearings, and an experienced reporter, Richard Rule, wrote the story.
The Nugget staff had a close relationship with Behan, but Rule's story, as printed in the Nugget the day after the shootout, backed up the Earp's' version of events. This varied widely from Behan's and the Cowboys' later court testimony.
:183 Subsequent stories about the gunfight published in the Nugget after that day supported Behan's and the Cowboys' view of events. Other stories in the Epitaph countered the Nugget's later view entirely and supported the lawmen.
In addition, Dr. George Good fellow, who examined the Cowboys after their deaths, told the court that the angle of the wound in Billy Clinton's wrist indicated that his hands could not have been in the air, or holding his coats open by the lapels, as witnesses loyal to the Cowboys testified. Part-time newspaper reporter Howell “Pat” Bathurst transcribed the testimony from the hearings in the early 1930s as part of a Federal Writers' Project, which was part of the Works Progress Administration.
After he completed his transcription, he kept the original document in his home, where it was destroyed in a house fire. The interpersonal conflicts and feuds leading to the gunfight were complex.
The brothers James, Virgil, Wyatt, Morgan, and Warren Earp were a tight-knit family, working together as lawmen, pimps, and saloon owners in several frontier towns, among other occupations, and had moved together from one town to another. Virgil served in the Union Army during the American Civil War and in 1877 became a police officer in Prescott, Arizona Territory.
Wyatt had held two jobs as a police officer in the cattle-drive towns of Wichita and Dodge City, Kansas. James, Virgil, and Wyatt Earp, together with their wives, arrived in Tombstone on December 1, 1879, during the early period of rapid growth associated with mining, when there were only a few hundred residents.
In the summer of 1880, Morgan and Warren Earp also moved to Tombstone. The Earp's invested together in several mining claims and water rights.
Virgil thought that some Cowboys had met at Charleston and taken “an oath over blood drawn from the arm of Johnny Ringo, the leader, that they would kill us.” In direct conflict with the Earp's' roles as lawmen, Johnny Behan was Cochise County Sheriff.
Virgil Earp had served for three years during the Civil War and had also been involved in a police shooting in Prescott, Arizona Territory. Marshal Crawley Make, on November 27, 1879, before the Earp's arrived in Tombstone on December 1, 1879.
He was appointed as Tombstone's acting town marshal on September 30, 1880, after popular Tombstone town marshal Fred White was shot and killed by Gropius. Only six weeks later, Virgil ran for the office on November 12, 1880, but lost to Ben Hippy.
The city soon discovered $3,000 (equivalent to $79,000 in 2019) in financial improprieties in Hippy's records. A few days later Virgil was appointed as town marshal in his place.
The city suspended him as town marshal after Ike Clinton filed murder charges. After Wyatt Earp first arrived in Tombstone, his business efforts yielded little profit, and he took a job as a stagecoach shotgun messenger for Wells Fargo, guarding shipments of silver bullion.
On July 28, 1880, Wyatt was appointed Lima CountyDeputy Sheriff. He held this position for only three months, until after the election of November 9, 1880, when he resigned.
When Virgil was maimed by an assassination attempt, Wyatt was appointed Deputy U.S. He held that position until he left Cochise County in April 1882.
Wyatt Earp was an imposing, handsome man: blond, 6 feet (1.8 m) tall, weighing 165 to 170 pounds (75 to 77 kg), broad-shouldered, long-armed, and muscular. According to author Leo Silva, Earp showed no fear of any man.
Wyatt had been an assistant marshal when he and policeman James Master son, along with a few other citizens, fired their pistols at several cowboys who were fleeing town after shooting up a theater. A member of the group, George Host (sometimes spelled How), was shot in the arm and died of his wound a month later.
Wyatt had developed a reputation as a no-nonsense, hard-nosed lawman, but prior to the gunfight in October 1881, he had been involved in only one other shooting, in Dodge City, Kansas during the summer of 1878. The 1931 book Wyatt Earp: Frontier Marshal was a best-selling biography by Stuart N. Lake.
It established Wyatt Earp's role as a fearless lawman in the American Old West and the legend of the “Gunfight at the O.K. :36 But Lake and many others in the popular media wildly exaggerated Wyatt's role as the central figure in the gunfight.
The book and later Hollywood portrayals embellished Wyatt's reputation and magnified his mystique as a western lawman. Morgan Earp had been a police officer in Montana, but had no known experience with gun fighting prior to their arrival in Tombstone.
While Wyatt was Pima County Deputy Sheriff on July 27, 1880, Morgan Earp took over his job as shotgun messenger for Wells Fargo. Morgan also occasionally assisted Virgil and at the time of the gunfight was wearing a deputy city marshal's badge and drawing pay.
Doc Holiday had a reputation as a gunman and had reportedly been in nine shootouts during his life, although it has only been verified that he killed three men. One well-documented episode occurred on July 19, 1879, when Holiday and his business partner, former deputy marshal John Joshua Webb, were seated in their saloon in Las Vegas, New Mexico.
Former U.S. Army scout Mike Gordon got into a loud argument with one of the saloon girls whom he wanted to take with him. Gordon stormed from the saloon and began firing his revolver into the building.
Holiday had saved Wyatt Earp's life at one time and had become a close friend. There, he first met future Tombstone sheriff Johnny Behan, a sometime gambler and saloon owner.
Many of the rural ranchers and Cowboys resented the growing influence of the city residents over county politics and law enforcement. The ranchers largely maintained control of the country outside Tombstone, due in large part to the sympathetic support of Cochise CountySheriffJohnny Behan, who favored the Cowboys and rural ranchers, and who also grew to intensely dislike the Earp's.
Behan tended to ignore the Earp's' complaints about the Clauses' and Cantons' horse thieving and cattle rustling. The Earp's were known to bend the law in their favor when it affected their gambling and saloon interests, which earned them further enmity with the Cowboy faction.
To reduce crime in Tombstone, on April 19, 1881, the city council passed ordinance 9, requiring anyone carrying a Bowie knife, dirk, pistol or rifle to deposit their weapons at a livery or saloon soon after entering town. It is hereby declared unlawful to carry in the hand or upon the person or otherwise any deadly weapon within the limits of said city of Tombstone, without first obtaining a permit in writing.
Section 2 : This prohibition does not extend to persons immediately leaving or entering the city, who, with good faith, and within reasonable time are proceeding to deposit, or take from the place of deposit such deadly weapon. Section 3 : All fire-arms of every description, and Bowie knives and dirks, are included within the prohibition of this ordinance.
In the borderlands south of Tombstone there was only one passable route between Arizona and Mexico, a passage known as Guadalupe Canyon. In August 1881, 15 Mexicans carrying gold, coins and bullion to make their purchases were ambushed and killed in Skeleton Canyon.
The next month Mexican Commandant Felipe Nero dispatched troops to the border, :110 where they killed five Cowboys, including Old Man Clinton, in Guadalupe Canyon. The Earp's knew that the Clauses and Cantons were reputed to be mixed up in the robbery and murder in Skeleton Canyon.
Pima County Sheriff Charles A. Shi bell appointed Wyatt Earp as deputy sheriff over eastern Pima County. On July 27, 1880, Lima CountySheriffCharles A. Shi bell, whose offices were in the county seat of Tucson, appointed Wyatt Earp as deputy sheriff. On October 28, 1880, Tombstone Marshal Fred White attempted to disarm some late-night revelers who were shooting their pistols in the air.
When he attempted to disarm Curly Bill Gropius, the gun discharged, striking White in the abdomen. Gropius waived the preliminary hearing so he and his case could be immediately transferred to Tucson.
Wyatt and a deputy took Gropius in a wagon the next day to Tucson to stand trial, possibly saving him from being lynched. Fred White left a statement before he died two days later that the shooting was not intentional.
Based on the evidence presented, Gropius was not charged with White's death. The Tombstone council convened and appointed Virgil Earp as “temporary assistant city marshal” to replace White for a salary of $100 per month (equivalent to $2,600 in 2019) until an election could be held on November 12.
In the November 2, 1880, election for Pima County sheriff, Democrat Shi bell ran against Republican Bob Paul, who was expected to win. Votes arrived as late as November 7, and Shi bell was unexpectedly reelected.
He immediately appointed Johnny Behan as the new deputy sheriff for eastern Pima County, a job that Wyatt wanted. A controversy ensued when Paul uncovered ballot-stuffing by Cowboys, and he sued to overturn the election.
Paul finally became sheriff in April 1881, but it was too late to reappoint Wyatt Earp as deputy sheriff because on February 1, 1881, the eastern portion of Pima County containing Tombstone had been split off into the new Cochise County, which would need its own sheriff, based in the county's largest city, Tombstone. This position was filled by a political appointment from the governor, and Wyatt and Behan both wanted the job.
The Cochise County sheriff's position was worth more than $40,000 a year (equivalent to $1.1 million in 2019) because the office holder was also county assessor and tax collector, and the board of supervisors allowed him to keep ten percent of the amounts paid. Wyatt withdrew from the political contest and the governor and legislature appointed Behan to the job of Cochise County sheriff on February 10, 1881.
Behan reneged on his deal with Earp and appointed Harry Woods as undersheriff instead. Behan said he broke his promise to appoint Earp because Wyatt Earp used Behan's name to threaten Ike Clinton when Wyatt recovered his stolen horse from Clinton.
Tensions between the Earp family and both the Clinton and Mary clans increased through 1881. On July 25, 1880, Captain Joseph H. Hurst, of Company A, 12th Infantry, and Commanding Officer of Fort Bennett, asked Deputy U.S.
Marshal Virgil Earp to help him track Cowboys who had stolen six U.S. Army mules from Camp Tucker. In response, Hurst had printed and distributed a handbill in which he named Frank Mary as specifically assisting with hiding the mules.
He warned Virgil, “If you ever again follow us as close as you did, then you will have to fight anyway.” A Skinnier Express stagecoach operating from Tombstone to Bis bee in the 1880s.
This thorough brace stagecoach used thick leather straps to support the body of the carriage and serve as shock-absorbing springs. On the evening of March 15, 1881, a Skinnier & Company stagecoach carrying $26,000 in silver bullion (equivalent to $690,000 in 2019) was en route from Tombstone to Benson, Arizona, the nearest freight terminal. :180 Bob Paul, who had run for Pima County Sheriff and was contesting the election he lost due to ballot-stuffing, was temporarily working once again as the Wells Fargo shotgun messenger.
Paul, in the driver's seat, fired his shotgun and emptied his revolver at the robbers, wounding a Cowboy later identified as Bill Leonard in the groin. The horses spooked and Paul wasn't able to bring the stage under control for almost one mile (1.6 km), leaving the robbers with nothing.
Paul, who normally rode shotgun, later said he thought the first shot killing Phil pot had been meant for him. Wyatt Earp and Bat Master son in 1876 as lawmen in Dodge City, KansasDeputy U.S.
Marshal Virgil Earp, along with temporary federal deputies Wyatt and Morgan Earp, Wells Fargo agent Marshall Williams, former Kansas Sheriff Bat Master son (who was dealing faro at the Oriental Saloon), and County Sheriff Behan set out to find the robbers. Wells Fargo issued a wanted poster offering a $3,600 reward (equivalent to $95,000 in 2019) for the three robbers ($1,200 each), dead or alive.
The posse trailed the robbers to a nearby ranch where they found a drifter named Luther King. He wouldn't tell who his confederates were until the posse lied and told him that Doc Holliday's girlfriend had been shot.
Fearful of Holiday's reputation, he confessed to holding the reins of the robbers' horses, and identified Bill Leonard, Harry “The Kid” Head and Jim Crane as the robbers. Somehow King walked in the front door of the jail and a few minutes later out the back.
King had arranged with Undersheriff Harry Woods (publisher of the Nugget) to sell the horse he had been riding to John Dunbar, Sheriff Behan's partner in the Dexter Livery Stable. On March 19, King conveniently escaped while Dunbar and Woods were making out the bill-of-sale.
Woods claimed that someone had deliberately unlocked a secured back door to the jail. Williams was later dismissed from Wells Fargo, leaving behind a number of debts, when it was determined he had been stealing from the company for years.
The Earp's pursued the other two men for 17 days, riding for 60 hours without food and 36 hours without water, during which Bob Paul's horse died, and Wyatt and Morgan's horses became so weak that the two men walked 18 miles (29 km) back to Tombstone to obtain new horses. After pursuing the Cowboys for over 400 miles (640 km) they could not obtain more fresh horses and were forced to give up the chase.
:123 Behan submitted a bill for $796.84 (equivalent to $21,000 in 2019) to the county for posse expenses, but he refused to reimburse the Earp's for any of their costs. They were finally reimbursed by Wells, Fargo & Co. later on, but the incident caused further friction between county and federal law enforcement, and between Behan and the Earp's.
After he was passed over by Johnny Behan for the position of undersheriff, Wyatt thought he might beat him in the next Cochise County election in late 1882. He thought catching the murderers of Bud Phil pot and Peter Roe rig would help him win the sheriff's office.
Ike began to fear that word of his possible cooperation had leaked, threatening to compromise his standing among the Cowboys. Undercover Wells Fargo Company agent M. Williams suspected a deal, and said something to Ike, who was fearful that other Cowboys might learn of his double-cross.
Ike now began to threaten Wyatt and Doc Holiday (who had learned of the deal) for apparently revealing Ike's willingness to help arrest his friends. The fallout over the Cowboys' attempt to implicate Holiday and the Earp's in the robbery, :544 along with Behan's involvement in King's escape, was the beginning of increasingly bad feelings between the Earp brothers and Cowboy factions.
In early 1881, Sadie ended the relationship after she came home and found Behan in bed with the wife of a friend and kicked him out, although she used the Behan surname through the end of that summer. Wyatt Earp lived with Mattie Blaylock, :159 who was listed as his wife in the 1880 census.
Earp remained with Blaylock until he left Tombstone in April 1882. In July 1882, Wyatt left Colorado and went to San Francisco, where he sought out Sadie and his brother Virgil, who was seeking treatment for his arm.
:29 In February or March 1883, Sadie and Earp left San Francisco for Unison, where Earp ran a Faro bank until he received a request in April for assistance from Luke Short in Dodge City. Tensions between the Earp's and the Clauses further increased when another passenger stage on the 'Sandy Bob Line' in the Tombstone area, bound for Bis bee, was held up on September 8, 1881.
The masked bandits robbed all the passengers of their valuables since the stage was not carrying a strongbox. During the robbery, the driver heard one of the robbers describe the money as “sugar”, a phrase known to be used by Frank Stairwell.
Stairwell had until the prior month been a deputy for Sheriff Behan but had been fired for “accounting irregularities”. Wyatt and Virgil Earp rode with a sheriff's posse and tracked the Bis bee stage robbers.
Virgil had been appointed Tombstone's town marshal (i.e., chief of police) on June 6, 1881, after Ben Hippy abandoned the job. However, Virgil at the same time continued to hold his position of deputy U.S. marshal, and it was in this federal capacity that he continued to chase robbers of stage coaches outside Tombstone city limits.
Stairwell and Spence arrests Edit Frank Stairwell had just arrived in Bis bee with his livery stable partner, Pete Spence, when the two were arrested by Deputy U.S. At the preliminary hearing, Stairwell and Spence were able to provide several witnesses who supported their alibis.
Judge Spicer dropped the charges for insufficient evidence just as he had done for Doc Holiday earlier in the year. Released on bail, Spence and Stairwell were re-arrested October 13 by Marshal Virgil Earp for the Bis bee robbery on a new federal charge of interfering with a mail carrier.
The newspapers, however, reported that they had been arrested for a different stage robbery that occurred on October 8 near Contention City. While Virgil and Wyatt were in Tucson for the federal hearing on the charges against Spence and Stairwell, Frank Mary confronted Morgan Earp.
The Tombstone Epitaph reported “that since the arrest of Spence and Stairwell, veiled threats being made that the friends of the accused will 'get the Earp's.'” Cowboys accuse Holiday of robbery Edit Milt Joyce, a county supervisor and owner of the Oriental Saloon, had a contentious relationship with Doc Holiday.
In October 1880, Holiday had trouble with a gambler named Johnny Tyler in Milt Joyce's Oriental Saloon. Tyler had been hired by a competing gambling establishment to drive customers from Joyce's saloon.
Milt brandished a pistol and threatened Holiday, but Holiday shot Joyce in the palm, disarming him, and then shot Joyce's business partner William Parker in the big toe. Holiday was arrested and pleaded guilty to assault and battery.
Holiday and his on-again, off-again mistress Big Nose Kate had many fights. County Sheriff John Behan and Milt Joyce saw an opportunity and exploited the situation.
They plied Big Nose Kate with more booze and suggested to her a way to get even with Holiday. She signed an affidavit implicating Holiday in the attempted stagecoach robbery and murders.
Holiday was a good friend of Bill Leonard, a former watchmaker from New York, one of three men implicated in the robbery. :181 Judge Wells Spicer issued an arrest warrant for Holiday.
The Earp's found witnesses who could attest to Holiday's location at the time of the murders and Kate sobered up, revealing that Behan and Joyce had influenced her to sign a document she didn't understand. With the Cowboy plot revealed, Spicer freed Holiday.
The district attorney threw out the charges, labeling them “ridiculous.” Doc gave Kate some money and put her on a stage out of town.
Wyatt Earp testified after the gunfight that five or six weeks prior he had met Ike Clinton outside the Alhambra Hotel. Wyatt Earp offered to prove this when Holiday and the Cantons next returned to town.
A month later, the weekend before the shootout, Morgan Earp was concerned about possible trouble with the Cowboys. Upon his return, Wyatt Earp asked Holiday about Ike's accusation.
On the morning of Tuesday, October 25, 1881, the day before the gunfight, Ike Clinton and Tom Mary drove 10 miles (16 km) in a spring wagon from Chandler's Milk Ranch at the foot of the Dragoon Mountains to Tombstone. They were in town to sell many beef stock, most of them owned by the Clauses.
Fred Dodge, an undercover detective for Wells Fargo, heard from J.B. Ayers, another undercover Wells Fargo man in Contention, that Frank Salary, Billy Clinton, and Billy Claiborne were in town and planning to join Ike and Tom in Tombstone Wednesday afternoon. Dodge, who had been sick, got up and went looking for city marshal Virgil Earp.
He found Tombstone Deputy City Marshal Morgan Earp at the Alhambra Saloon instead and told him the news. Near midnight, Holiday saw Clinton in the Alhambra Saloon and confronted Ike, accusing him of lying about their previous conversations.
Wyatt Earp (who was not wearing a badge) encouraged his brother Morgan to intervene. Morgan took Holiday out onto the street and Ike, who had been drinking steadily, followed them.
City Marshal Virgil Earp arrived a few minutes later and threatened to arrest both Holiday and Clinton if they did not stop arguing. Wyatt Earp walked over to the Oriental Saloon and Ike followed him.
Corral after a fire in 1882After Holiday's confrontation with Ike Clinton, Wyatt Earp took Holiday back to his room at Cam illus Sidney “Buck” Fly's Lodging House to sleep off his drinking, then went home and to bed. TombstoneMarshal Virgil Earp played poker with Ike Clinton, Tom Mary, Cochise County Sheriff Johnny Behan and a fifth unnamed man in a back room of the Occidental Saloon until morning.
At about dawn on October 26, the card game broke up and Behan and Virgil Earp went home to bed. Ike Clinton testified later he saw Virgil take his six-shooter out of his lap and stick it in his pants when the game ended.
Not having rented a room, Tom Mary and Ike Clinton had no place to go. Shortly after 8:00 am barkeeper E. F. Boyle spoke to Ike Clinton in front of the telegraph office.
Clinton had been drinking all night and Boyle encouraged him to get some sleep, but Ike insisted he would not go to bed. Boyle later testified he noticed Ike was armed and covered his gun for him.
Ike said in his testimony afterward that he remembered neither meeting Boyle nor making any such statements that day. Deputy Marshal Andy Brock also heard the talk around town.
Later in the morning, Ike picked up his rifle and revolver from the West End Corral, where he had deposited his weapons and stabled his wagon and team after entering town. At Fly's boarding house where Holiday and his common-law wife Mary Katharine Horny were sleeping, proprietor Mary Fly heard Clinton's threats and banged on Holiday's door.
Fly told Horny, “Ike Clinton was here looking for , and he had a rifle with him.” Wyatt waited with Clinton while Virgil went to find Justice Wallace, so a court hearing could be held.
Ike reported in his testimony afterward that Wyatt Earp cursed him. He said Wyatt, Virgil and Morgan offered him his rifle and to fight him right there in the courthouse, which Ike declined.
Justice Wallace fined Ike $25 (equivalent to $660 in 2019) plus court costs. Ike paid the fine and Virgil told Ike he could pick up his confiscated rifle and revolver at the Grand Hotel, which was favored by Cowboys when in town.
Ike testified that he picked up the weapons from William Sole, the jailer, a couple of days later. Pete Spence, an alias for Elliot Larking Ferguson, in an 1893 Yuma Penitentiary prison mugshotOutside the courthouse where Ike was being fined, Tombstone Deputy Marshal Wyatt almost walked into 28-year-old Tom Mary as the two men were brought up short nose-to-nose.
Wyatt testified that he saw a revolver in plain sight on the right hip of Tom's pants. As an unpaid deputy marshal for Virgil, Wyatt habitually carried a pistol in his waistband, as was the custom of that time.
Witnesses reported that Wyatt drew his revolver from his coat pocket and pistol whipped Tom Mary with it twice, leaving him prostrate and bleeding on the street. Saloon-keeper Andrew Mean testified at the Spicer hearing afterward that he saw Mary deposit a revolver at the Capital Saloon sometime between 1:00–2:00 pm, after the confrontation with Wyatt, which Mean also witnessed.
Wyatt said in his deposition afterward that he had been temporarily acting as city marshal for Virgil the week before while Virgil was in Tucson for the Pete Spence and Frank Stairwell trial. Wyatt said that he still considered himself a deputy city marshal, which Virgil later confirmed.
At the time of the gunfight about two hours later, Wyatt could not know if Tom was still armed. It was early afternoon by the time Ike and Tom had seen doctors for their head wounds.
The day was chilly, with snow still on the ground in some places. Both Tom and Ike had spent the night gambling, drinking heavily, and without sleep.
Now they were both out-of-doors, both wounded from head beatings, and at least Ike was still drunk. At around 1:30–2:00 pm, after Tom had been pistol-whipped by Wyatt, Ike's 19-year-old younger brother Billy Clinton and Tom's older brother Frank Mary arrived in town.
They had heard from their neighbor, Ed “Old Man” Frank, that Ike had been stirring up trouble in town overnight, and they had ridden into town on horseback to back up their brothers. They arrived from Antelope Springs, 13 miles (21 km) east of Tombstone, where they had been rounding up stock and had breakfasted with Ike and Tom the day before.
Both Frank and Billy were armed with a revolver and a rifle, as was the custom for riders in the country outside Tombstone. Apache warriors had engaged the U.S. Army near Tombstone just three weeks before the O.K.
Corral gunfight, so the need for weapons outside of town was well established and accepted. Billy and Frank stopped first at the Grand Hotel on Allen Street, and were greeted by Doc Holiday.
They learned immediately after of their brothers' beatings by the Earp's within the previous two hours. Angrily, Frank said he would not drink, and he and Billy left the saloon immediately to seek Tom.
By law, both Frank and Billy should have left their firearms at the Grand Hotel. Ike apparently had not heard Virgil tell him that his confiscated weapons were at the Grand Hotel around the corner from Spangenberg's shop.
When Virgil Earp learned that Wyatt was talking to the Cowboys at Spangenberg's gun shop, he went there himself. Virgil testified afterward that he thought he saw all four men, Ike Clinton, Billy Clinton, Frank Mary, and Tom Mary, buying cartridges.
Virgil went around the corner on Allen Street to the Wells Fargo office, where he picked up a 10-gauge or 12-gauge, short, double-barreled shotgun. It was an freezing and windy day in Tombstone, and Virgil was wearing a long overcoat.
To avoid alarming Tombstone's public, Virgil hid the shotgun under his overcoat when he returned to Afford's Saloon. Corral and then west, stopping in a narrow, empty lot next to C. S. Fly's boarding house.
Virgil initially avoided a confrontation with the newly arrived Frank Mary and Billy Clinton, who had not yet deposited their weapons at a hotel or stable as the law required. The statute was not specific about how far a recently arrived visitor might “with good faith, and within reasonable time” travel into town while carrying a firearm.
This permitted a traveler to keep his firearms if he was proceeding directly to a livery, hotel or saloon. The three main Tombstone corrals were all west of 4th street between Allen and Fremont, a block or two from where Wyatt saw the Cowboys buying cartridges.
Miner Ruben F. Coleman later told The Tombstone Epitaph : Cochise CountySheriffJohnny Behan, a friend of the Cowboys, later testified that he woke up about 1:30 pm after the late-night card game, and went to get a shave at a barbershop.
Behan stated he quickly finished his shave and went to locate the Cowboys. At about 2:30 pm he found Frank Mary holding a horse and talking to someone on Fourth Street near the corner of Fremont.
When he saw Ike Clinton and Tom Mary near C. S. Fly's photography studio, he walked there with Frank. Ike Clinton said he was not armed, and Tom Mary pulled his coat open to show he was not carrying a weapon.
The Cowboys were located in a narrow 15–20 feet (4.6–6.1 m) lot between the Hardwood house and Fly's 12-room boarding house and photography studio at 312 Fremont Street, where Doc Holiday roomed. Behan later said he attempted to persuade Frank Mary to give up his weapons, but Frank insisted that he would give up his guns only after City Marshal Virgil Earp and his brothers were first disarmed.
The Cowboys were about a block and a half from the West End Corral at 2nd Street and Fremont, where Ike and Tom's wagon and team were stabled. Virgil Earp later testified that he thought Ike and Tom were stabled at the O.K.
Corral on Allen between 3rd and 4th, from which he thought they would be departing if they were leaving town. While Ike Clinton later said he was planning to leave town, Frank Mary reported that he had decided to remain behind to take care of some business.
Will Mary, Tom and Frank's brother and a judge in Fort Worth, Texas, claimed in a letter he wrote during the preliminary hearing after the shootout that Tom and Frank were still armed because they were planning to conduct business before leaving town to visit him in Texas. He wrote that Billy Clinton, who had arrived at horseback with Frank, intended to go with the Clauses to Fort Worth.
Will Mary came to Tombstone after the gun fight and joined the prosecution team in an attempt to convict the Earp's and Holiday for his brothers' murder. Caroline married James Reed in Richland, Iowa at the end of November that year.
Citizens reported to Virgil on the Cowboys' movements and their threats told him that Ike and Tom had left their livery stable and entered town while armed, in violation of the city ordinance. Virgil Earp was told by several citizens that the Clauses and the Cantons had gathered on Fremont Street.
His decision to take action may have been influenced by the Cowboy's repeated threats to the Earp's, their proximity to Holiday's room in Fly's boarding house, and their location on the route the Earp's usually took to their homes two blocks further west on Fremont Street. Several members of the citizen's vigilance committee offered to support him with arms, but Virgil refused.
He had also appointed Wyatt as a Special Policeman while Virgil had been in Prescott on business. He had also called on Doc Holiday that morning for help with disarming the Cantons and Clauses.
Wyatt spoke of his brothers Virgil and Morgan as the “marshals” while he acted as “deputy.” Virgil Earp picked up the shotgun he had retrieved from the Wells Fargo office earlier.
:185 He gave the shotgun to Doc Holiday who hid it under his overcoat. As usual, the Earp's carried their revolvers in their coat pockets or in their waistbands.
Wyatt Earp was carrying a .44 calibers American1869 Smith & Wesson revolver. Holiday was carrying a nickel-plated pistol in a holster, but this was concealed by his long coat, as was the shotgun.
The Earp's and Holiday walked west, down the south side of Fremont Street past the rear entrance to the O.K. Corral, but out of visual range of the Cowboys' last reported location.
Near the corner of Fourth St. and Fremont St., the Earp's ran into Sheriff Behan. He had left the Cowboys and came toward the Earp's, though he looked nervously backward several times.
Wyatt said I “took my pistol, which I had in my hand, under my coat, and put it in my overcoat pocket.” The Earp's walked further down Fremont street and came into full view of the Cowboys in the lot.
Annotated 1886 fire map of Tombstone indicating the actual shootout location (in green) and the O.K. Corral (in yellow) on the other side of the blackbird St. in Tombstone, Arizona in 1909 from the roof of the Cochise County Courthouse.
Corral was located on Allen St., the first right turn off Third St. The white building at the center right is Chieftain Hall on Fremont St. Martha J.
King was in Bauer's butcher shop located on Fremont Street. When the Earp's approached the lot, the four law men initially faced six Cowboys: Frank Mary, Tom Mary, Billy Clinton, Billy Claiborne, Was Fuller, and Ike Clinton.
In testimony given by witnesses afterward, they disagreed about the precise location of the men before, during and after the gunfight. The coroner's inquest and the Spicer hearing produced a sketch showing the Cowboys standing, from left to right facing Fremont Street, with Billy Clinton and then Frank Mary near the Hardwood house and Tom Mary and Ike Clinton roughly in the middle of the lot.
Opposite them and initially only about 6 to 10 feet (1.8 to 3.0 m) away, Virgil Earp was on the left end of the Earp party, standing a few feet inside the vacant lot and nearest Ike Clinton. Morgan Earp was standing on Fremont Street to Wyatt's right, and Doc Holiday anchored the end of their line in Fremont Street, a few feet to Morgan's right.
Wyatt Earp drew a sketch in 1924 and another with John Flood on September 15, 1926, that depicted Billy Clinton near the middle of the lot, close to the Hardwood house. Tom and Frank Mary stood deeper in the lot.
According to Wyatt's sketches, Morgan was on the right of the lawmen, close to the Hardwood house, opposite Billy Clinton near the Hardwood house and close to Fremont St. Virgil was deeper in the lot, opposite Frank and Ike Clinton. Doc Holiday hung back a step or two on Fremont Street.
:145 Neither of Wyatt's sketches included Ike Clinton or Billy Claiborne, who ran from the fight. Once Behan said that he'd disarmed the Cowboys, Virgil moved Doc's cane to his right hand and shifted the pistol in his waistband from the right side to his left.
Holiday still concealed the short shotgun under his long jacket. Wyatt too was not expecting a fight and put his pistol in his overcoat pocket.
Virgil and Wyatt both testified they saw Frank Mary and Billy Clinton draw and cock their single action six shot revolvers. Jeff Morey, who served as the historical consultant on the film Tombstone, compared testimony by partisan and neutral witnesses and came to the conclusion that the Earp's described the situation accurately.
Who started shooting first is not certain; accounts by both participants and eyewitnesses are contradictory. The smoke from the black powder used in the weapons added to the confusion of the gunfight in the narrow space.
Those loyal to one side or the other told conflicting stories, and independent eyewitnesses who did not know the participants by sight were unable to say for certain who shot first. Wyatt testified, “Billy Clinton leveled his pistol at me, but I did not aim at him.
He said he shot Frank Mary after both he and Billy Clinton went for their revolvers: “The first two shots were fired by Billy Clinton and me, he's shooting at me, and I'm shooting at Frank Mary.” Morey agreed that Billy Clinton and Wyatt Earp fired first.
Clinton missed, but Earp shot Frank Mary in the stomach. When the shooting started, the horse that Tom Mary held jumped to one side.
Holiday shoots Tom According to one witness, Holiday drew a “large bronze pistol” (interpreted by some as Virgil's coach gun) from under his long coat, stepped around Tom Mary's horse, and shot him with the double-barreled shotgun in the chest at close range. Witness C. H. “Ham” Light saw Tom running or stumbling westward on Fremont Street towards Third Street, away from the gunfight, while Frank and Billy were still standing and shooting.
Light testified that Tom fell at the foot of a telegraph pole on the corner of Fremont and 3rd Street and lay there, without moving, through the duration of the fight. Valley also saw Tom stagger across the street until he fell on his back.
After shooting Tom, Holiday tossed the empty shotgun aside, pulled out his nickel-plated revolver, and continued to fire at Frank Mary and Billy Clinton. Cowboys run Ike Clinton had been publicly threatening to kill the Earp's for several months, including very loud threats on the day before.
Wyatt told the court afterward that Clinton had bragged that he would kill the Earp's or Doc Holiday at his first opportunity. But when the gunfight broke out, Clinton ran forward and grabbed Wyatt, exclaiming that he was unarmed and did not want a fight.
:164 Clinton ran through the front door of Fly's boarding house and escaped, unbounded. Other accounts say that Ike drew a hidden pistol and fired at the Earp's before disappearing.
Morgan Earp fired almost immediately, as Billy Clinton drew his gun right-handed. Morgan's shot hit Billy in the right wrist, disabling his hand.
Forced to shift the revolver to his left hand, Clinton continued shooting until he emptied the gun. Morgan Earp tripped and fell over a newly buried waterline and fired from the ground.
He tried and failed to grab his rifle from the scabbard but lost control of the horse. Frank crossed Fremont Street firing his revolver instead.
Holiday followed him, exclaiming, “That son of a bitch has shot me, and I am going to kill him.” Frank fell to the sidewalk on the east side of Fremont Street.
A number of witnesses observed a man leading a horse into the street and firing near it and Wyatt in his testimony thought this was Tom Mary. Was Fuller also identified Frank as the man in the street leading the horse.
One of them, perhaps Billy, shot Morgan Earp across the back in a wound that struck both shoulder blades and a vertebra. Frank, now entirely across Fremont street and still walking at a good pace according to Claiborne's testimony, fired twice more before he was shot in the head under his right ear.
Both Morgan and Holiday apparently thought they had fired the shot that killed Frank, but since neither of them testified at the hearing, this information is only from second-hand accounts. After he ran out of ammunition, he called for more cartridges, but C. S. Fly took his pistol at about the time the general shooting ended.
:234 Passersby carried Billy Clinton to the Hardwood house, where Tom had been taken. Billy was in considerable pain and asked for a doctor and some morphine.
:234 Ike Clinton, who had repeatedly threatened the Earp's with death, was still running. Both Wyatt and Virgil believed Tom Mary was armed and testified that he had fired at least one shot over the back of a horse.
Billy Clinton and Frank Mary exchanged gunfire with the lawmen. During the gunfight, Doc Holiday was bruised by a bullet fired by Frank that struck his holster and grazed his hip.
Virgil Earp was shot through the calf, he thought by Billy Clinton. Tom Mary, his brother Frank, and Billy Clinton were killed.
As the wounded lawmen were carried to their homes, they passed in front of the Sheriff's Office, and Johnny Behan told Wyatt Earp, “I will have to arrest you.” Wyatt paused two or three seconds and replied very forcibly: “I won't be arrested today.
Dr. Henry M. Mathews examined the dead Cowboys late that night. He found Frank Mary had two wounds: a gunshot beneath the right ear that horizontally penetrated his head, and a second entering his abdomen one inch (2.5 cm) to the left of his navel.
Mathews stated that the wound beneath the ear was at the base of the brain and caused instant death. Sheriff Behan testified that he had heard Morgan Earp yell “I got him” after Frank was shot.
This makes it much more likely that Holiday shot the fatal round that killed Frank. When he examined Tom Mary's body, Mathews found twelve buckshot wounds from a single shotgun blast on the right side under his arm, between the third and fifth ribs.
The nature and location of the wound indicated that it could not have been received if Tom's hands were on his coat lapels as the Cowboys later testified. Both Virgil and Wyatt stated that Holiday had shot Tom, which the coroner's exam supported.
Dr. George Good fellow testified about Billy Clinton's wounds at the Spicer hearing. He stated that the angle of the wrist wound indicated that Billy's hand could not have been raised over his head as claimed by Cowboy witnesses.
This indicated to the judge that Billy could not have been holding his coat's lapels open, his arms raised, as the Cowboys testified. The first was two inches (5 cm) from Clinton's left nipple, penetrated his lung.
The other was in the abdomen beneath the twelfth rib, six inches (20 cm) to the right of the navel. The wound to Billy Clinton's right wrist may have been inflicted by Morgan Earp or Doc Holiday immediately at the outset of the fight as Billy was drawing his gun.
Fly found Billy Clinton's empty revolver in his hand where he lay and took it from him. Frank McLaury was also armed with a Colt Frontier 1873 revolver in .44-40 caliber, which was recovered by laundryman Valley on the street about 5 feet (1.5 m) from his body with two rounds remaining in it.
Valley placed it next to Frank's body before he was moved to the Hardwood house. Dr. Mathews laid Frank's revolver on the floor while he examined Billy and Tom.
Cowboy witness Was Fuller said he saw Frank in the middle of the street shooting a revolver and trying to remove a Winchester rifle from the scabbard on his horse. The two Model 1873 rifles were still in the scabbards on Frank and Tom Mary's horses when they were found after the gunfight.
If, as was customary, Frank carried only five rounds, then he had fired only three shots. No revolver or rifle was found near his body and he was not wearing a cartridge belt.
Saloon-keeper Mean testified that Tom had deposited his revolver at the Capital Saloon on 4th Street and Fremont after his arrest and before the fight, between 1 and 2 p.m. Several Cowboy witnesses testified that Tom was unarmed and claimed that the Earp's had murdered a defenseless man. :164 Behan's testimony was significant, since he was a prime witness for the prosecution but had equivocated on this point.
Behan's sympathy to the Cowboys was well known, and during the trial he firmly denied he had contributed money to help Ike with his defense costs. However, documents were located in 1997 that showed Behan served as guarantor for a loan to Ike Clinton during the Spicer hearing.
Rule wrote, “The Sheriff stepped out and said : 'Hold up boys, don't go down there or there will be trouble; I have been down there to disarm them.'” In his testimony, Behan repeatedly insisted he told the Earp's that he only intended to disarm the Cowboys, not that he had actually done so.
The article said that Behan “was standing nearby commanding the contestants to cease firing but was powerless to prevent it.” The Nugget had a close relationship to Behan; it was owned by Harry Woods, who was also undersheriff to Behan, but Woods was collecting prisoners in El Paso, Texas, that day.
Both Virgil and Williams' testified that Behan visited Virgil Earp that evening and said, “I am your friend, and you did perfectly right.” This corroborated the initial Nugget report, which upon Wood's return was altered to a version that favored the Cowboys and which Behan later supported in his testimony at the hearing. Hotel keeper Albert “Chris” Illicit, whose father Charles owned the Cosmopolitan Hotel, saw Tom Mary enter Bauer's butcher shop about 2:00 p.m.
He testified that Tom's right-hand pants pocket was flat when he went in but protruded, as if it contained a pistol (so he thought), when he emerged. Retired army surgeon Dr. J. W. Gardiner also testified that he saw the bulge in Tom's pants.
However, the bulge in Tom's pants pocket may have been the nearly $3,300 (equivalent to $87,000 in 2019) in cash and receipts found on his body, perhaps in payment for stolen Mexican beef purchased by the butcher. Wyatt and Virgil Earp and Doc Holiday believed that Tom had a revolver at the time of the gunfight.
Wyatt thought Tom fired a revolver under the horse's neck and believed until he died that Tom's revolver had been removed from the scene by Wesley Fuller. In his statement, Valley wrote that the man still held his pistol in his hand.
However, it's known that Bathurst arbitrarily removed text that he decided was not relevant. Even if Tom wasn't armed with a revolver, Virgil Earp testified Tom attempted to grab a rifle from the scabbard on the horse in front of him before he was killed.
About 300 people joined in the procession to Boot Hill and as many as two thousand watched from the sidewalks. The story was widely printed in newspapers across the United States.
The headline in the San Francisco Exchange was, A Good Riddance “. Three days after the shootout, the ruling of the Coroner's Jury convened by Dr. Henry Matthews neither condemned nor exonerated the lawmen for shooting the Cowboys.
Four days after the shootout, Ike Clinton filed murder charges against Doc Holiday and the Earp's. Wyatt and Holiday were arrested and brought before Justice of the Peace Wells Spicer.
Only Wyatt and Holiday were required to post $10,000 bail (equivalent to $260,000 in 2019), which was paid by their attorney Thomas Fitch, local mine owner E.B. Gage, Wells Fargo undercover agent Fred Dodge, and other business owners appreciative of the Earp's' efforts to maintain order.
:194 Virgil Earp was suspended as town marshal pending the outcome of the trial. Justice Spicer convened a preliminary hearing on October 31 to determine if there was enough evidence to go to trial.
The prosecution was led by Republican District Attorney Littleton Price, assisted by John M. Murphy, James Robinson, and Goodrich. They were joined by William Mary, Frank and Tom's older brother, he also is an able attorney, who played a key role on the prosecutor's team.
The Earp's' attorney Thomas Fitch was an experienced trial lawyer and had earned a reputation as the “silver-tongued orator of the Pacific.” Spicer took written and oral testimony from a number of witnesses over more than a month.
Those loyal to one side or the other told conflicting stories and independent eyewitnesses who did not know the participants by sight were unable to say for certain who shot first. Cochise County Sheriff Johnny Behan testified on the third day of the hearing.
During two days on the stand, :103 he gave strong testimony that the Cowboys had not resisted but either threw up their hands and turned out their coats to show they were not armed. Behan's views turned public opinion against the Earp's, who were free on bail.
They portrayed Ike Clinton and Tom Mary as being unjustly bullied and beaten by the vengeful Earp son the day of the gunfight. On the strength of the prosecution case, Spicer revoked the bail for Doc and Wyatt Earp and had them jailed on November 7.
Defense accounts contradicted the testimony of Behan, Claiborne and Allen, who all said that a man had fired a nickel-plated pistol first. Virgil, Wyatt and other witnesses testified that Holiday was carrying a shotgun.
The prosecution's scenario would have required Holiday to fire with his pistol first, switch to the shotgun to shoot Tom Mary, then switch back again to his pistol to continue firing. Three witnesses gave key evidence that swayed Justice Spicer to hold that Virgil had acted within his capacity as town marshal and that there was insufficient evidence to indict the Earp's and Doc Holiday for murder.
Grilled by the prosecution, he corroborated virtually all the defense's testimony. Addie Moorland was a dressmaker whose residence was across Fremont Street from Fly's Boarding House.
Lucas of the Cochise County Probate Court had offices in the Mining Exchange Building about 200 feet (60 m) from the shootout. :214–216 Lucas' corroborated Addie Moorland's testimony that Billy Clinton was standing throughout the fight, which contradicted prosecution witnesses who maintained he went down immediately after being shot at close range in the belly.
Spicer noted that no powder burns were found on his clothing. After hearing all the evidence, Justice Spicer ruled on November 30 that Virgil, as the lawman in charge that day, had acted within his office and that there was not enough evidence to indict the men.
He described Frank Mary's insistence that he would not give up his weapons unless the marshal and his deputies also gave up their arms as a “proposition both monstrous and startling!” He noted that the prosecution claimed that the Cowboys' purpose was to leave town, yet Ike Clinton and Billy Claiborne did not have their weapons with them.
Spicer noted that the doctor who examined the dead Cowboys established that the wounds they received could not have occurred if their hands and arms had been in the positions that prosecution witnesses described. The public perception of the Earp brothers' actions at the time were widely divergent.
Even today, the event and its participants are viewed differently by opinionated admirers and detractors. The controversy still stimulates ongoing interest in the gunfight and related events.
A hand-drawn sketch of the gunfight was made by John Flood with Wyatt Earp's assistance on September 15, 1921; it was sold at auction in October 2010 for $380,000. The map describes the position of a number of witnesses and all the participants except Ike Clinton, who fled from the gunfight.
In 1952, Victor Clyde Forsythe, a popular painter of desert scenes and cowboy artist, painted “Gunfight at O.K. In May 1988, his studio printed and sold a limited edition of 390 copies of the painting.
Flood in turn willed them to Gilchrist, who amassed over a number of years one of the largest collections of personal items belonging to Wyatt and Virgil Earp, along with many unpublished photos of them and their family. Gilchrist opened the Wyatt Earp Museum in Tombstone in 1966 and commissioned Western artist Don Percival to paint the Gunfight at the O.K.
He referred to original documents in Gilchrist's collection, including Wyatt Earp's own diagram of the shootout, and unpublished notes made by John Flood, to create what is regarded as the most accurate depiction of the shootout. Gilchrist had 500 lithographic prints reproduced from the original, which Percival signed.
Less than a month after the shootout it was described by a local newspaper as the “Gunfight at The O.K. William Breckenridge in his 1928 book El Dorado: Bringing Law to the Mesquite described it as “The Incident Near the O.K.
Corral in his popular book Wyatt Earp: Frontier Marshal. Corral that cemented the incident and its erroneous location in popular consciousness.
The movie and accompanying mythologizing also altered the way that the public thought of the Earp's and the outlaws. Prior to the movie, the media often criticized the Earp's' actions in Tombstone.
In the movies, they became the good guys, always ready to stand for what is right. The incident has become a fixture in American history due to the personal nature of the feud between the Earp's and the Mary and Clinton brothers and the symbolism of the fight between lawmen and the Cowboys.
The Cowboys maimed Virgil and murdered Morgan but escaped prosecution, and Wyatt's extra-legal campaign for revenge captured people's attention. The gunfight and its aftermath stand for the change overcoming America as the Western frontier ceased to exist, as a nation that was rapidly industrializing pushed out what had been a largely agrarian economy.
Corral A 2003 episode of Discovery Channel's Unsolved History used modern technology to attempt to re-enact the gunfight. They utilized a movie set to recreate a space similar to the lot where the original gun fight took place.
They confirmed that the front-to-back wrist wound suffered by Billy Clinton could only have occurred if his arm was raised in the manner of one holding a pistol, and that the black powder may have obscured the shooters' view of each other. The episode concluded that the three eyewitnesses for the prosecution (Sheriff Behan, Ike Clinton, and Billy Claiborne) likely offered perjured testimony.
The stories about the gunfight written in the 20th century affected American culture. Numerous dramatic, fictional, and documentary works have been produced about or in reference to the event, with widely varying degrees of accuracy.
Law and Order (1932) with Walter Huston, the first film to depict the gunfight Tombstone, the Town Too Tough to Die (1942) with Richard Dix My Darling Clementine (1946) with Henry Fonda The Life and Legend of Wyatt Earp (1955–1961), TV series with Hugh O'Brian, season 6, episode 36 Gunfight at the O.K. Corral (1957) with Burt Lancaster and Kirk Douglas The Gunfighters (1966), a Doctor Who is a serial Hour of the Gun (1967) with James Garner Specter of the Gun (1968), an original Star Trek episode Doc (1971) written by Pete Hamill “Showdown at O.K.
Corral (1972), an Appointment with Destiny episode that was nominated for an Emmy Award “Ghost Fight at the OK Corral (1987), The Real Ghostbusters season 2, episode 47 Tombstone (1993) with Kurt Russell Wyatt Earp (1994) with Kevin Costner “Shootout at Fly's Photographic Studio”, a History Bites episode “Rule of the Gun” (2004), an episode of Days That Shook the World Tombstone Fashion (2017), a film by Alex Cox A thinly fictionalized depiction of the conflict between the outlaws and the law officers.
David Williams and Paul McIlroy introduced a mathematical model for the O.K. Corral gunfight, which they published in Bulletin of the London Mathematical Society (1998).
They analyzed the probability of “survival of exactly S gunmen given an initially fair configuration.” ^ a b c d e WITH American Experience: Wyatt Earp, Complete Program Transcript.
“Born to Uphold the Law: Frank Galloway's Principles Applied to the Earp-Clanton Feud of 1879–1882” (PDF). A book by Al Turner purports to include the complete testimonies of the participants, but I also read that the original findings were lost in one of Tombstone's fires”.
“First action hero: Wyatt Earp was an elderly movie groupie who failed to make it as an extra ...” The Independent. Burs Under the saddle: A Second Look at Books and Histories of the West (First ed.).
Or was he a bad guy who wore a badge merely to protect his crooked gambling interests?” Why the West Was Wild: A Contemporary Look at the Antics of Some Highly Publicized Kansas Cow town Personalities.
Burs Under the Saddle: A Second Look at Books and Histories of the West (First paperback ed.). The Trampling Herd: The Story of the Cattle Range in America.
^ a b “Tensions Grow in Tombstone, Arizona, After a Stage Coach Robbery”. The Clauses in Tombstone, Arizona: An O. K. Corral Obituary (First ed.).
John Wiley & Sons, Inc. “Decision of Judge Wells Spicer after the Preliminary Hearing in the Earp-Holliday Case”. Wyatt Earp's Cow-boy Campaign: The Bloody Restoration of Law and Order Along the Mexican Border, 1882.
College Station, Texas: Creative Publishing company. “Testimony of Addie Moorland in the Preliminary Hearing in the Earp-Holliday Case”.
Under Cover for Wells Fargo The Unvarnished Recollections of Fred Dodge. ^ The Daily Nugget, October 27, 1881 ^ Liner, Douglas, ed.
“Decision of Judge Wells Spicer after the Preliminary Hearing in the Earp-Holliday Case”. Corral and How it Changed the American West (First Simon & Schuster hardcover ed.).
“Testimony of Albert Illicit in the Preliminary Hearing in the Earp-Holliday Case”. “Testimony of William Allen in the Preliminary Hearing in the Earp-Holliday Case”.
), The O. K. Corral Inquest (1992) “The Spicer Hearing Testimony of H.F. Stills”. Tombstone Tales; Stories from The Town too Tough to Die ... and Beyond.
Western Gunslingers in Fact and on Film: Hollywood's Famous Lawmen and Outlaws. Invented Lives, Imagined Communities: The Biopic and American National Identity.
Corral on IMDb ^ Howe, David J.; Stammers, Mark; Walker, Stephen James (1994). ^ Hour of the Gun on IMDb ^ Slow, Herbert F. ; Robert H. Dustman (1997).
Corral /Saint Valentine's Day Massacre” on IMDb Kinsman, J. F. C.; Volvo, S. E. (January 2003). “Solution to the OK Corral Model via Decoupling of Friedman's Urn”.
College Station, Texas: Creative Publishing Co. ISBN 0-932702-14-7. Quarterly of the National Association for Outlaw and Lawman History (NOLA).