Scott Dyke: Johnny Ringo – The myth meets the truth

Scott Dyke: Johnny Ringo – The myth meets the truth

By Scott Dyke In the history of the Old West, no name captured more imagination than Ringo. Hundreds of times that name has popped up in books, TV Westerns and movies. The real John Ringo was, indeed, a celebrated gunman who roamed the Southwest in pursuit of an easy living. His image, like many from […]

Scott Dyke: Sad tale of “Mattie” Earp

Scott Dyke: Sad tale of “Mattie” Earp

By Scott Dyke She was a simple farm girl who, on a lark, took off with her sister for adventure. Her name was Celia Ann Blaylock. Everyone would call her Mattie. He was a sometime lawman, itinerate gambler and fortune seeker. His name was Wyatt Earp. Everyone called him dangerous. Celia, born in Johnson County, […]

Scott Dyke: Reality rides the desert in the wild West

Scott Dyke: Reality rides the desert in the wild West

By Scott Dyke The following is based upon an incident several years ago. The location was in Southern Arizona; either the Chiricahua Mountains, the Swisshelm Mountains, Skeleton Canyon, or somewhere below Arivaca, all remote and difficult to access. The man and his wife moved West five years earlier, both desiring winter warmth and a closeness […]

Scott Dyke: Bloody Ruby storied past at Western ghost town

Scott Dyke: Bloody Ruby storied past at Western ghost town

By Scott Dyke Second of two parts The Fraser brothers migrated from Nova Scotia, lured by the siren’s song of mining fortunes to be had. Arriving in the States in 1902, Alex was 40 and John 43. They hit the mining camps in Colorado and pushed farther west to Arizona. Unrewarded, they moved on to […]

Scott Dyke: Wells Fargo never forgets — getting the job done

Scott Dyke: Wells Fargo never forgets — getting the job done

Part II of the series By Scott Dyke Last issue, part one of “The Cowboys versus Wells Fargo” featured a look at the Texas-spawned men who made their mark on the history of the Old West. This week covers how Wells Fargo dealt with them. The early history of Wells Fargo mirrors the growth of […]

Scott Dyke: Alamo trip has something for everyone

Scott Dyke: Alamo trip has something for everyone

By Scott Dyke “Remember the River Walk!” Not exactly the historical rallying cry associated with San Antonio, home of the Alamo. When planning a trip for two, one must supply a dual purpose to entice. Alice’s interest in the Alamo amounts to a one on a scale of 1, and “one” could be an inflated […]

Scott Dyke: The most accomplished Western lawman

Scott Dyke: The most accomplished Western lawman

By Scott Dyke “… as fearless a man and as fast a friend as I ever knew.” Quite an accolade. Spoken by Wyatt Earp. Describing Bob Paul. Paul has to be ranked as the least recognized and most accomplished lawman the West had ever seen. Earp’s record and deeds paled in comparison. A giant in more […]

Scott Dyke: ‘A bad character sent to hell’

Scott Dyke: ‘A bad character sent to hell’

By Scott Dyke A colleague of mine labeled Frank Stilwell (aka Stillwell) as the “ultimate dirtbag of the Tombstone story.” You could argue that selection by pointing out a handful of others, but Frank deserves heavy consideration. Stilwell migrated to Arizona in 1877, following his famous brother, “Comanche Jack.” Jack was a well-respected Army scout […]

Scott Dyke: Those iconic westerns

Scott Dyke: Those iconic westerns

By Scott Dyke Jimmy Durante’s trademark lament is a well-documented description of Western movie history. Setting the tone was “The Great Train Robbery,” considered the first commercially successful movie. The making of this 1903 Western has some strange facts. The Edison Studio silent production ran 12 minutes. One of its “stars,” Max Aronson, played three […]