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Looks like he may have had some African American in him.
I have always wondering about the authenticity of this photograph. The only place I have seen it was at the Bird Cage Saloon in Tombstone. Anyone have any more information on it?
Boze always states in his books that there are no known photos of Curley Bill.
As far as I know there is no real provinence on this.It is still another case of someone throwing that out there and others repeating it to where the image has taken on a life of its own.There are probably dozens of old west photos where wishful thinking attributions have been made and are now accepted as fact.
I put this pic out there because I didn't believe it either. I wanted to see other opinions. Now I am convinced that this is NOT Curley Bill.
While The Bird Cage is a great place to visit, soak up atmosphere and look at artifacts I and others over the years have found some of the attributions they(and others) have made to be very doubtful.Such is the way of things when historic sites become tourist traps-either someone makes a mistake and a mythos develops from there or there is deliberate deception which also builds an" urban legend" so to speak. One of the enduring falsehoods about the theatre itself is the oft told falsehood that it had never been used and left untouched since it closed as a theatre in 1889(I think) when in fact it was sporadically used for different businesses or purposes right up to the time it became a museum.I remember touring through it in 1969 when I was 14 and a staffer kept emphasizing the untouched"bug in amber " quality of the building even pointing out a red glass hanging light fixture,a modern obviously fake copy of a 19th century oil chandelier,the sort one could buy from Sears from the late 50's onward into the 70's!
I see mis -attributions all the time and often bear the burden of having to straighten out messes caused by amateur historians,antique and insurance appraisers and others who tend to fuzz up history.Now,can a previously unknown photo be found(there has to be other images of a person or actual corroborating physical evidence such as a building) without a scrap of a provinance? The answer is yes,of course as it happens more often than generally supposed.That is one of the things that gets us so worked up over this history fascination we share.
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