The Street Fight, October 26, 1881 Tombstone, AZ

Artist Unknown

These three items are part of an assortment of Wyatt Earp works I have collected in the last fifteen years. Since moving to Arizona, I have been able to more thoroughly research Old West historians. Last year, Promega showcased historical photos of Arizona from the collection of Jeremy Rowe and Jeremy, for one, has written extensively about this photo of Wyatt Earp’s wife.

This photo, called Kaloma, depicts the woman thought to be the wife of Wyatt Earp. I found it in Greece in 1997 at an antique shop located in downtown Thessaloniki. The one displayed is a reproduction, since the original is too fragile to display for three months. The controversy about the true identity of the woman depicted in the photo is typical of Old West lore and embellishments of the truth about that time in our history.

The photograph of Jennifer Tilly posing in reflection of Kaloma is by John Beckett. This and other shots from the same photo shoot can be found in the issue of True West magazine currently located in the Promega library. This issue of True West was the fastest selling issue they have ever had.

I own various books and a collection of over 600 negatives from Tombstone, AZ circa 1915. I have been working with the Historical Society there to preserve these images. Last year I stayed at an RV camp in Tombstone. It took me about one hour of sitting on a bench and talking to locals to connect with just about everyone who claimed to be an expert of the history of The Shootout at the OK Corral nearby. Tombstone, “The Town Too Tough to Die,” is my favorite bit of Americana.