I instantly urge you not to be put off by the organization’s name. Yes, they do tend to lean toward the colorful events (shootouts and battles) and personalities (outlaws and lawmen) of Western history. Of course, such matters did, in fact, often play a pivotal role in that history.
Still, within that context, the history is taken very seriously, as evidenced by the WWHA Journal. The latest issue (which I still need to read) includes an article about Isaac Quincy Dickason, Third Arizona Territorial Marshal. As with most Journal articles, the item includes a long list of endnotes and detailed citations (47 in this one case). You want to publish in the Journal? Do your homework, because the membership may know as much or more than you (think) you do about the subject. (No, I have not yet submitted an article for publication.)
Plus, it’s not all about shootouts, crooks, and lawmen. Just in the last few issues, authors have discussed several fascinating related issues. Some included:
|Teddy Roosevelt, ca 1885.|
Library of Congress.
• "The Cowboy” in history, literature, and film.
• How post-(Civil)-war experiences in the South played out there and in the West
• Frontier actress and Union spy Harriet Pauline Wood Cushman (Cushman being, apparently, a stage name).
• Biography of a key personality in the Teapot dome Scandal.
• And so on.
Neither the WWHA, nor its predecessors – the National Association for Outlaw and Lawmen History, and Western Outlaw-Lawman History Association – has ever before held a meeting within the state of Idaho. Let’s show them a warm welcome.
To give you an idea of the program, which covers a lot of Idaho history, I’ve included a partial list below (Idaho-connected presenters shown in italics). Some of my blog items have covered similar/related topics, so I have included those links. (That's not [just] to brag, but for background … I’m sure the presenters will provide much more than I could in my short blog items.)
• Hill Beachy, Avenger - Mike Hanley. Hanley is a working cattleman and an expert on the history of the Owyhee Country. [Pursuit of the Magruder killers.]
• Polly Bemis-Chinese American Pioneer - Priscilla Wegers. Dr. Wegers, a University of Idaho graduate, is an expert on Asian-American history. Polly Bemis arrived in Idaho around 1872, probably as an indentured (slave?) concubine, somehow gained her freedom, and then lived out her life in the Territory/state.
• A Man Called Rube (Rube Robbins) - Arthur Hart. Hart is Director Emeritus of the Idaho State Historical Society. Rube Robbins was a famous Indian scout and lawman in Idaho.
• The Dynamiters (The Steunenberg Assassination) - R.C. Sobba. Sobba is a retired Boise Valley lawman. His talk concerns the murder of retired Idaho Governor Frank Steunenberg and the subsequent trial. [I have several related blogs, including one about Frank’s brother, Albert.]
• Montpelier Bank Robbery (Butch Cassidy) - Bill Betensen. Betensen’s Facebook page is entitled, “Butch Cassidy, my uncle.” [Bank robbery blog.]
|Kittie Wilkins. Idaho State University.|
•Wyatt Earp in Idaho (Dan Ferguson) – Casey Tefertiller.
• The Legend and Myth of Diamondfield Jack (Idaho cattle/sheep war) - Max Black. A former Idaho legislator, Black currently lives in Boise. [I have several blogs connected with Diamondfield Jack and the Wilson-Cummings shootings.]
The program is not all about Idaho, so you may want to go to the WWHA web site for more details.