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Opened in as a saloon, its owners had to pivot when the pendulum swung against booze.

The myth of the cowboy | Books | The Guardian

A brokerage occupied the second floor, and in a ticker-tape machine and stock board were installed to bring the latest news from Wall Street. When the exchange closed in , the alcohol started flowing a year later. Details: 15 Brewery Ave. The reason this bar dates to only is because it was built after one of the fires known to ravage mining boomtowns in the s.

The Old West oozes from its pressed-tin ceiling and its scarred, hard-working bar. Another reminder of the good old days?

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Details: Main St. More: Arizona's mining history: Danger for many, riches for a few. It was home to a handful of caretakers in the s and '80s before it opened as a hotel and a haunted one at that, given its past. The cozy and intimate establishment is a great place to share ghost stories, should anybody have one. When it opened in , the mines were booming and the cash flowed like the copper being scraped from the ground.

Prescott: Palace Saloon

Like the Jerome Grand Hotel, the Copper Queen is said to welcome various spirits, and is best known for the one that makes her home in Room According to legend, a prostitute took her life after the man she loved rejected her. She appears to carry a grudge, as its mostly men who report seeing her. The area just north of the border was booming in the early s, thanks to successful mining and ranching endeavors.

Travelers wanted a hotel that lived up to their standards, and the Gadsden rose from the desert in While legend has it that Pancho Villa rode his horse on the elegant marble staircase, history knows that staircase was the only thing to survive when the hotel burned in In fact, they precede Plymouth Rock by some 20 years, meaning they're older than America itself.

The original cowboys were Mexican cattlemen known as vaqueros , and they are literally everything you imagine a cowboy to be.

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Cow, check. Penis, check. Yep -- it's all covered. They came up with all of the cowboy lingo , including "bronco," "lariat," and even "stampede. They also wore chaps, held rodeos, and lived the life of a cowboy in relative anonymity for some years. When Americans moved westward, it was these vaqueros who knew the land and wildlife enough to help teach the future American cowboys everything they knew. The settlers in turn did the right thing and outright stole the entire culture, including the title of "vaqueros," which was turned into "buckaroos. But it's not like vaqueros went the way of the cowboy at the time, either.

Despite what Hollywood would have you believe, not every cowboy or human being, for that matter was a white male. One in three cowboys were Mexican vaquero. One in four are believed to be black men who were released from slavery but didn't have the ability to flee far from their captors. Even the Native Americans would help move the cattle with their white, Mexican, and black brethren. It was a rainbow cowboy coalition! Except if you were Chinese. Then you were building railroads in hellish conditions.

The ultimate item of the cowboy outfit is of course the Stetson hat, which most of us just call a cowboy hat. There's always the boots, too, but they kind of go together as a pair. The hats were practical, lightweight, and made with utility in mind.

They had curved edges that could defend you from both sun and rain, and they made you look incredibly stylish while doing what amounted to staring at cows for weeks at a time. The curved brim, those dips in the crown, the band -- the Stetson is about as iconic as clothing gets.

Christopher Knowlton tells a fascinating story that's as much about ledger sheets as longhorns.

So if you get in your time machine and set it for , you'd damn well better be packing one of these:. Lots of people wore hats back then, that part's true. But they seemed to wear everything but what we think of as "cowboy" hats. Here's Billy the Kid wearing some kind of fucked-up top hat:. Here, enjoy this theme music. They make me feel dainty. They were more popular because they were a little more versatile in various social situations, especially in a time when all men wore hats all the damn time.

This dude could be gut-stabbing toddlers and we'd still shake his hand. Even the cowboy hats that Stetson was making in the late s didn't look like the Stetson hats we call "cowboy hats" today. Originally known as " the Boss of the Plains ," it looked more like modern Amish hats, and may have been just a modified sombrero.

All of the curling and ornamentation came later, but this hat is the granddaddy of every cowboy hat in the world today. And that's not exactly what your mind jumps to when you think of cowboy hats, is it?

Western fiction

Well, even if cowboys didn't have cowboy hats, we sure as hell know they had six-shooters on their hip. Back then, every man, woman, and child came pre-equipped with an old-timey revolver, which was used for everything from personal defense and hunting to celebrating. Regardless of the public's perception, gun control laws may have actually been stricter back in the 19th and early 20th century than they are now, especially in the West.

In the beginning, there was definitely gun violence, as there was neither standardized law nor a good way to enforce it, but the Wild West didn't stay wild forever. As towns formed and communities grew, the need for and tolerance of handguns started to fall. Starting in , some 25 years into the westward expansion, action was finally taken -- even places as wild as Dodge City started posting signs like this:.

Fabius Maximus Man, we could go for some prickly ash bitters right about now. In fact, the gunfight at the O. Corral was caused by one gang being unwilling to abide by the anti-firearm rule of Tombstone. But it's not like the six-shooter of the time was very dangerous anyway. They didn't even use regular bullets like they currently do, instead opting for the so-called "cap-and-ball" system that was little more than a marble launched by black powder. It had an effective range of maybe 50 feet. The Adams , one of the first revolvers introduced at the time and a hallmark weapon of the era, would burn the living hell out of your hand while launching the bullet.

So you had to be really sure you wanted to shoot that dude. That's why, even among those who used guns, six-shooters weren't the favorite. They were little more than a weapon of last resort. Shotguns and rifles were the preferred weapons, having both the power and the range to put down a mountain lion or a card-cheating son of a bitch.

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But who would ever want to watch a Western where cowboys were meeting at high noon to shoot each other in the face with huge shotguns? If you're pressed for time and just looking for a quick fix, then check out 4 Reasons Everyone in the New Superman Movie is a Dick. Do you have an idea in mind that would make a great article? Do you possess expert skills in image creation and manipulation?

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