I find that I am getting a little tired of dispensing all this second hand information on these ladies of the old west and feel the need to branch out into a different direction for awhile. There are any number of them that I have failed to cover, and the information is on the web if you care to travel further.
JULIE BULETTE, QUEEN OF VIRGINIA CITY!!
Julie seems to have come from New Orleans, possible of French decent (don’t they all?). Some also claimed she was a excapee from the Barbary Coast, but no evidence exists to support the claim. It is known that she was one of the girls in a house of prostitution in Angle’s Camp, Calif. (of Mark Twain’s “Jumping Frog” fame).
At the time of Julie’s arrival in Virginia City the “scarlet ladies” were confined to series of cheap, shabby cribs on “C” Street. She took her place in one of these deplorable cribs, but not for long. Being a gay woman with considerable charm, she soon used her influence with some of the affluent masculine upper crust to improve her lot. She persuadedthem to build her a twin row of trim,neat, white washed cabins on “D” street. It soon became to be known as “Julie’s Castle” and and attracted the more expensive Strumpets.
Julies castle was the premiere establishment of it’s kind in Virginia City. She soon had potted Roses and Geraniums planted around her cottages, much to the disdain of the respectable Ladies of society in town. They could not fathom how she could afford such extravagance at $10 a pot. Julie could afford just about anything she desired. She constantly was receiving parcels by the Wells Fargo Stage, from San Fransisco, from the most fashionable stores there.
In fact Julie was so prized that on male admirer provides her with a matched team of white horses and a elegant phaeton. Much to the ire of the gentle women of this wide open silver town, The Virginia City Engine Company Number One made her a honorary member. She marched in all their parades in her jacket and helmet and responded to all their calls. It was reported she would leave a paying costumer in her bed to respond, returning afterwards. One such call involved steaming hot water cascading through a mine shaft. Afterwards the mine was refered to as the “Julie Mine” as in “too hot to handle”.
Julie was murdered in her bed, discovered the next morning by her maid. The killers had stolen jewels, furs and money. A massieve and fericious man hunt ensued and two culprits were run down and killed. One named a third conspitor before he died. He was arrested, tried and condemended to be hung. (You can read of the hanging by going to Yahoo or Google, simply type in Julie Bulette).
The good ladies of Virginia City were scandalized by the turn out for Julies funeral. Against their vehement wishes, husbands and fathers by the thousand marched behind her casket, following the entire Virginia City Engine Company Number One, resplendent in their blue coats and polished bugles.
One other name you might like to look up is that of Annie Chambers, of Kansas City, a prostitute and madam of some fame. Who pulled her self up from the gutter by her garters and became one of the most successful madams of that area.
I want to list one of the enduring legends of the old west in regard to women outlaws at this time.
ROSE OF CIMARRON
There is not really a lot recorded about Rose, her real name has been carefully guarded. Rose was not really a outlaw in the sense that she participated in criminal endeavors. she simply loved the wrong kind of man. Rose was in love with a member of the Bill Dalton/Bill Doolin gang, (recognise these guys from Cattle Annie and Little Britches? They seemed to have a fascination for women). Bitter Creek Newcomb was the love interest of Rose. Other members of the gang at the time were Arkansas Tom, Little Dick West, Tulsa Jack and Dynamite Dick (apparently you had to have a neat nick-name to be a member of this gentelman’s club).
On September 1, 1893 the group rode into Ingles, Oklahoma for a little R&R and to check on Arkansas Tom who was laid up sick at the hotel there. Having received a tip about their plans to be in town that day, two covered wagons loaded with law men had arrived early and hidden along the street. A note was sent to the saloon to Doolin telling him he was surrounded and to surrender. His reply was “To go to hell”, and the shooting started. Normally a gunfight only lasts for 10 to 15 seconds like the one at the O. K. corral, this one however lasted over a hour.
This is where Rose gained her moment of lasting fame. Rushing to a second story window of the hotel she saw her lover, Bitter Creek Newcomb hunkered behind a water through with only his pistol for defense. She rushed to Arkansas Tom’s room and grabbed a Winchester and belt of ammo and returned to the window. As he was across the street, she could not throw the gun and ammo that far. Tearing a sheet into strips she lowered the equipment to the ground. then tearing more bedding she climbed out the window to the ground and ran across the street in a hail of gunfire to Newcombs side. Whether she felt they would not shoot a woman or what she actually made it unharmed. Discovering Bitter Creek wounded she passed the gun to another gang member and helped her man into a barn. There other gang members had hitched up a wagon and they all piled in and made a get away, leaving two dead law men behind. The entire gang escaped capture, although all were wounded. Mrs. Pierce, who owned the hotel prevailed on Arkansas Tom to surrender to save her hotel from being shot to peices.
I could find no information as to what pentaly if any, Rose received for her part in the action. Simply that she was inducted in to the halls of the old west legend’s. She later married a influential Oklahoma Politician, became a model wife, mother and christian. Which probably explains why no mention was made of rose’s real name.
I have a lynching of a woman that I want to cover next time. Then several wives of the cavary before abandoing the women of the west for a while.
It’s getting late on a Sunday evening and time to think about supplementing the great Mexican Restaurant Brunch we enjoyed this A.M. the way my enormous belly feels better keep tonight light.
Till next time.