How the West Was Won
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BEAU L'AMOUR'S COMMENTS: How the West Was Won was a novelization that Louis was hired to create by the producers of the movie.  There is a great deal of information on the story of how the book came to be written in the Postscript of the new Lost Treasures edition of the novel.

As the movie near completion the constant changes the producers required in the novel (in order for it to match their script) were testing Louis's patience.  As this entry in his journal begins to show, eventually he boiled over ...

July 15th 1962 – “Some irritation over HOW THE WEST WAS WON.  B Smith, the producer had an idea the mountain men always got along with the Indians, which is false, and that outlawry in the west ended in 1883, which couldn’t be more wrong.  I wouldn’t change it, and presented a list of 40 train robberies (there were more) after that time.  It was t.r. [train robbery] upon which he based his argument for some reason. … I don’t think he liked it or me.  I try to be authentic as possible, and believe a writer owes it to his readers to be so.”

The list below was part of that letter that just became too long to include in the Lost Treasures Postscript of How the West Was Won but I can reprint it here in all it's glory.

According to Dad, "It is only a few of the major crimes, ignoring several hundred private gun battles, rustling, horse-theft and all bank robberies except in a couple of special cases. Only two of the largest feuds are included. The emphasis is on train robberies."

As for the other contention, that outlawry in the west was fading in 1883 Louis gives the following list:

An Anecdote about the leader of the Burrows gang: Rube Burrows, who was for a time thought to be invincible, drew on his boots one morning and died before he had a chance to take them off. It was learned that his strength was in the main, geographical. He knew the country. His neighbors also knew it, and when they finally went out after the reward that had been offered for their quondam friend they got it and him.

1. 1886: Ft.Worth & Denver train, Bellevue Sta. BURROWS gang

2. 1886: Texas Pacific train, Gordon Sta. BURROWS gang

3. June 3,1887: Train at Ben Brook Sta. BURROWS gang

4. Sept. 1887: Train at Ben Brook Sta. BURROWS gang

5. Nov. 3,1887: Denver-Rio Grande train, E. of Grand Junction CASSIDY gang

6. Dec. 1887: St. Louis, Ark.& Tex. Sta. at Genoa, BURROWS gang

7. Dec. 15,1888: Illinois Cen.,Duck Hill,Miss. BURROWS gang

8. Mar. 20,1889: Train robbed at Canyon Diablo, Arizona SMITH gang

9. Mar. 30, 1889: Bank, Denver, Color. CASSIDY gang

10. June 24, 1889: Bank, Telluride CASSIDY gang

Bob Dalton

Emmett Dalton

Grat Dalton

The last member of the Doolin-Dalton gang was killed trying to rob a bank in 1924.

11. Feb. 6, 1891: S.P.train s. of Tulare,Calif. DALTON gang

12. May 9, 1891: Santa Fe train, Perry, Okla. DALTON gang

13. Sept. 1891: S.P. train at Val Verde, Tex.

14. June 1,1892: Santa Fe train, at Red Rock DALTON gang

15. July 14,1892: M. K & T train near Adair DALTON gang

16. Oct. 5,1892: Raid on two banks, Coffeeyville, Kans. DALTON gang

17. Nov., 1892: Bank robbed, Spearville, Kans. DOOLIN-DALTON

18. May 28, 1893: Santa Fe train, Cimarron, Kans? DOOLIN

19. 1893: Ione-Jackson stage held up, Messenger killed.

20. July 14, 1894: Muskogee Ft.Gibson stage held up. COOK gang

21. July 16, 1894: Frisco Train, Red Rock COOK gang

22. July 31, 1894: Bank at Chandler COOK gang

23. Sept. 21, 1894: Robbed Parkinson Store nr. Oklmulgee COOK gang

24. Oct.5 & 6, 1894: Two holdups nr.Ft.Gibson COOK gang

25. Oct. 10, 1894: Missouri-Pacific train at Claremore COOK gang

26. Oct. 10, 1894: Robbed Katy R.R.agent at Choteau COOK gang

27. Oct. 20, 1894: Missouri-Pacific train at Coretta COOK gang

28. Oct. 25, 1894: Robbed 3 travelers near Vinita, Okla. COOK gang

29. Nov. 9, Schufelt Store at Lenepah COOK gang

30. May 4, 1894: Rock Island train, nr.Dover, Okla. DOOLIN

31. Apr.21, 1897: Pay roll, Castlegate, Utah CASSIDY gang

32. Aug.13, 1896: Bank at Montpelier CASSIDY gang

33. Cook arrested. 45 yrs., Cherokee Bill (Cook gang) hung.

34. 1897: Jennings gang made several attempts to rob trains without success. Finally got $400 from passengers, a gal.of whiskey and a bunch of bananas.

Butch Cassidy & The Wild Bunch

35. June 2nd,1899: Overland Flyer, Wilcox, Wyo. CASSIDY gang

36. July 11, 1899:Color.Southern, Folsom, N.Mex. CASSIDY gang

37. Aug. 29, 1900: U.P.train, Tipton, Wyo. CASSIDY gang

38. July 3, 1901: train robbed, Malta, Mont. CASSIDY gang

39. March 27,1915: Two banks, Stroud, Okla. STARR gang

40. Wells Fargo reported 15 successful stage holdups in 1886.

Alvord, Stiles, ect. tried a holdup of a train, and got shot up. The Black Jack gangs were active during all of this period.

In 1892 the Wyoming Invasion (cattle war) took place. In 1886 before and after that date the Tonto Basin War was going, with at least 26 killed...probably closer to 46.

Ike Clanton was not killed until 1887. Phin Clanton went to prison about then.

Doc Halliday died in 1887.

In Feb. of 1887 Long-Hair Jim Courtright and Luke Short shot it out in Fort Worth in a meeting of titans. Short killed Jim. {Luke was part owner of the White Elephant saloon. Long Hair Jim Courtright was running a protection racket of sorts wanting payment for security. Luke balked at this request. The two gunfighters confronted each other. In a confused exchange, Courtright pulled his gun which jammed and Luke pulled his, shooting off Courtright's thumb. Jim could not return fire and Short killed him with a bullet through the heart.}

The above is only a partial list. My records list many more. I also have the brief biographies, put together by myself of nearly 2,000 gunfighters between 1850 and 1910.


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