Tales of the Old West from Arthur H. Clark
Carry Nation is described by Clark as, "one of America's most uninhibited crusaders against drinking, tobacco, sex, the Masonic Lodge, William McKinley, Theodore Roosevelt and others." She was undoubtedly an all around charmer, but she saved her best for saloons. Carry is best remembered for her pro-temperance activities, primarily her habit of marching into saloons and breaking up the place with her trademark hatchet. She sold replicas of this tool to pay the fines she incurred. While others may have spoken more eloquently on behalf of temperance, it is doubtful any had quite the impact on the country's population that Carry and her hatchet had. However, if you think Carry Nation was always some wide-eyed radical, she had it right with regard to men when she pointed out, "Men are nicotine-soaked, beer-besmirched, whiskey-greased, red-eyed devils." Even the most radical among us occasionally stumble upon well-reasoned truths. The book is Vessel of Wrath: The Life and Times of Carry Nation, by Robert Lewis Taylor. Item 61. $17.50.
Mountain Charley was no gentleman. You can read about "Charley's" interesting life in Mountain Charley: or the adventures of Mrs. E.J. Guerin, who was thirteen years in male attire: an autobiography... Her story, and we caution that a later biography by a contemporary contradicts much of what she says, goes like this. A "love child" before anyone heard of that term, she was raised by an aunt and uncle until, at age 5, she was sent off to school, never to return. At 12, she ran away from school, got married, had two children, and found herself a widowed mother at age 15 when her husband was murdered. Unable to support her children, she turned them over to the Sisters of Charity, and disguised herself as a man, so few jobs being open to women in those days. She spent four years working on a steamer, and then got a job as a brakeman for the Illinois Central, a job she lost when her true identity was discovered. Next she headed west with a group of men searching for gold. She wasn't successful, but did better opening up a saloon and buying a ranch. However, she was drawn back to confront her husband's killer. She would engage him in two shootouts, but each survived both. After the second, Charley's adversary outed her. Her secret revealed, she remarried, thus becoming Mrs. Guerin, but we are told she continued to don men's clothes, evidently for the fun of it. Item 54 is the 1968 University of Oklahoma Press reprinting of this tale of crossdressing in the Old West. $25.
Item 153 is the Diary of the Washburn Expedition to the Yellowstone and Firehole Rivers in the year 1870. Published by author Nathaniel Langford in 1905, it recounts the first expedition into the upper Yellowstone region. Langford would go on to be the first superintendent of Yellowstone Park. $250.
You may find The Arthur H. Clark Company online at www.ahclark.com or reach them by phone at 800-842-9286.