Wednesday, July 15, 2020

Three Decades of Insanity On The Bloody Trail of Billy the Kid!

July 15, 2020
   Sometimes I see visions from my youth.

Daily Whip Out:
"The Needles Looking South"

   I am working on the revisions for Book Three of "The Illustrated Life & Times of Billy the Kid." This morning I realized, I've spent over three decades on the bloody trail of Billy the Kid. What the hell have I learned?

   Daily Whip Out:
"On The Bloody Trail of Billy the Kid"

   Legend says the Kid killed 21 men, one for every year of his short life, but the actual confirmed tally is closer to four.

   He never robbed a bank, or a train, and he never stood in the street and dared anyone to draw.

  He was self-deprecating and downplayed his role in the Lincoln County troubles: "I wasn't the leader of any gang—I was for Billy all the time."

   He was probably right-handed.

   According to Frank Coe, the Kid wasted bullets: "Cartridges were scarce, and he always used about 10 times as many as any one else."

   His real name was Henry. How many movies would you go see about Henry The Kid? Probably not 65, which is the current number of films based on his nickname.

   The Kid probably paid a quarter for his only known photo and one of the four surviving tintypes sold for $2.3 million, in 2011. Not a bad return on investment. Perhaps the most valuable takeaway in the whole story is: invest in photographs.

   The only thing crazier than a Billy the Kid Buff, is a Wyatt Earp-O.K. Corral Buff, and the only thing crazier than both of them put together is a Custer Nut. Believe it or not, I actually know someone who is all three.

“I had avoided Billy the Kid because I knew down that road, lies madness.” 
—The Top Secret Writer


  1. I always appreciate your art and stories Bob. Keep 'em coming....

  2. A lo-o-ong time ago I sent a short story to Jones and Boze, written in the style of Dick Wick Hall. Dick met Wyatt Earp and Josie, who were motoring through Salome, AZ, looking for land to buy. Wyatt cleaned up at a poker game and Josie left a poem in their room, her entry into The Salome Sun’s poetry contest. I just ran across my copy of it, but I didn’t date it. Is there any chance you remember the year you file-thirteened it?


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