Historic Photos of Heroes of the Old West
Text and captions by Mike Cox
Turner Publishing Company, 2010
Reviewed by Elliot Jackson
The title of this handsome coffee-table book tells you almost everything you need to know about what you will find inside: yet for every photo of a traditional “hero” or villain (Wyatt Earp, George Custer, hanging judges, stolid Indians), there is a photo that chronicles a lesser-known thread in the story: Ann Eliza Webb Young, for example, one of the wives of Mormon leader Brigham Young, who spoke out against polygamy in her book, “Wife No. 19”; or Nat Love, a black cowboy born into slavery, who wrote his autobiography. There are also fascinating group shots: a group of men huddles around a faro table in one; the company of Troop C, Fifth Cavalry, which was charged with keeping the peace and throwing out squatters in Oklahoma Territory, stares out from another. All the photos are accompanied by captions by author Mike Cox, who also provides short introductory essays for each chapter.