WILLIAM BARCLAY "BAT" MASTERSON - ANNOTATED TYPED MANUSCRIPT SIGNED - HFSID 280335
WILLIAM BARCLAY "BAT" MASTERSON
This extraordinary typed manuscript for Dodge City, The Cowboy Capital about Western lawman Bat Masterson, with a total of four handwritten corrections by him, including his very rare full signature. It was written by Robert M. Wright, former mayor of Dodge City, Kansas, and sent to Masterson, a former deputy in Dodge City, for his review.
Annotated typed manuscript signed "William Barclay (Bat) Masterson". Black ink and lead pencil notations in unknown hand. 6 pages, 8½x11, bound with a needle at top edge. There are a total of four corrections on the first page. The first is Masterson's signature, correcting the title "W.B. Masterson (Bat)". He also corrected the initials "W.B." in the first sentence with "William Barclay". The other two corrections pertain to his candidacy for sheriff of Ford County, Kansas, which included Dodge City. He crossed out the "6" in "1876" and corrected it with "7". This extraordinary document is a short biography of Masterson written by Robert M. Wright for his book Dodge City, The Cowboy Capital (1913). Wright, a former mayor of Dodge City, Kansas sent this manuscript to Masterson, a former deputy in Dodge City, for his review. There are a few corrections on the first page, including one by Masterson spelling out his first two initials as "William Barclay". According to Wright, Masterson was "one of the most notable characters of the West,was one of the Dodge City's first citizens, and for this reason if no other,de-serves a space in my book." The text concerns itself with anecdotes from the lives of Masterson and his brother Ed. Wright describes Masterson's partner in grading railroad lines having run off with their money, and then praises his character: "...There is nothing low-down about him. He is high-toned and broad-minded, cool and brave. In 1876 he became a candidate for sheriff of Ford County, of which Dodge is the county seat...". He continues: "...There was a train robbery committed at Kinsley, Kansas and one Dave Rudebaugh was the main guy... [Bat] gathered a posse... and took the trail. He caught onto a scent that led him to Henry Lovell's cattle camp... Bat was certain the robbers would seek this camp for shelter which they did...they were captured without a shot being fired... Bat was a man most loyal to his friends...exemplified in his action saving Billy Thompson. Billy and Ben Thompson were brothers, high rollers and desperate men as well as gamblers. Billy was shot all to pieces in a gun play... Bat promised Billy to bring him out... Ben Thompson was at the only hotel there desperately wounded... friends of Thompson were to commence a sham battle at the big dance hall... by a perfect fusillade of shots... everyone ran out of the hotel... Bat landed Billy in a sleeper and locked the door... they landed next morning at William Cody's...". The text also sets forth details of the killing of Ed Masterson. Masterson would later make every effort to promote Wright's book, often quoting passages in his column in the New York Morning Telegraph. Summing up the life of Masterson (1853-1921) in a few sentences isn't an easy thing. He was an American frontier gambler and buffalo hunter and a scout for the United States Army. Masterson was also a lawman, serving as a deputy in Dodge City, Kansas alongside Wyatt Earp and later sheriff for Ford County, Kansas (1877-1879), as well as town marshal of Trinidad (1881-1882) and later, during the administration of President Theodore Roosevelt, as a U. S. Marshall for the southern district of New York. He was also a journalist, beginning his career in the political hotbed of Dodge City and later as a sports writer in Denver, Colorado and in New York City at the New York Morning Telegraph. Lightly toned, stained, soiled and creased. Light tears along right, left and bottom edges. Random ink stains. Staple holes at top edge. Folded twice and unfolded. Otherwise, fine condition. Accompanied by PSA/DNA LOA.
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