In the upcoming June issue of True West magazine (we go to press a week from today) we are going to feature just a fraction of the outpouring of love for our late friend Bob McCubbin.
Here are a couple of tribute tidbits:
"Robert G. 'Bob' McCubbin passed away, peacefully in his sleep, on Thursday morning,
April 9, 2020, in Santa Fe, New Mexico, at the age of 83. Bob was the founding president of
Wild West History Association and known world-wide for his two important collections:
photographs of Wild West and frontier characters, and his one-of-a-kind collection of first
edition books and pamphlets. Born February 17, 1937, in Stillwater, Oklahoma, he was the father
of four children, Cody, Julie, Tacey and Bobby, and several grandchildren. He is also survived
by a dear brother, Don and wife Mary Ann, and their daughter, Cheryl.
"Due to the current situation with COVID 19, no funeral service will be held at this time.
"A memorial service will be conducted in Lincoln, New Mexico, at the first opportunity. Long-time friend, Roy B. Young, will deliver the eulogy. Further notice of arrangements will be
announced as soon as they are known."
—Roy B. Young
"The problem with asking what image or artifact Bob McCubbin was most proud of is that it’s like asking, 'which one of your children do you love most?' Bob did not discriminate. He seemed to think of his entire collection – books, photos, manuscripts, artifacts – as a single thing: 'The Collection.' He acquired (and let go of) items relative to their value to the Collection. From garters to guns, every piece was special and had a place in the whole. Even the Billy the Kid knife (which he was definitely proud of), was part of his overall vision. Bob was unique in the way he collected in that he did it because of his love of history and commitment to accuracy. When Bob identified something he wanted or needed, he dug deeper than anyone to make sure he acquired all the knowledge and accouterments to go with it. He had a great sense of humor about things he wished he might own (like the Billy the Kid Upham tintype), but he was never jealous of anyone else’s collection. Always honest (occasionally to a fault) and generous, he was a historian who happened to be a collector, and he just wanted to share it all with the rest of us."
Santa Fe, New Mexico
When Bob and I were scheming to buy True West magazine back in 1999, McCubbin suggested to me that we ask his boss at El Paso Gas, Rick Baish, to join us in the purchase, which Rick generously agreed to do. Although Rick eventually tired of the negative cash flow and the snake pit of problems in a business he knew nothing about, he did provide us with much needed extra capitol and we couldn't have succeeded without him. Here is Rick's remembrance of his friend and colleague.
"Bob McCubbin was my friend over a period of nearly 30 years. Readers of True West likely will know him as an historian and preeminent collector of photographs, books and artifacts relating to the Old West. Likewise, I expect most of the remembrances will focus on that aspect of Bob's life. I'm not going to be able to add much that is new or novel in that respect. Maybe, though, I can add something concerning Bob's 'day job.'
El Paso, Texas