The Wildest West is a collection of short stories and short non-fiction covering the 1850s and 60s, the period when the west was at its wildest. There are some Dan and Roque stories and some stories with completely new characters.
In “Showdown at Echo Amphitheatre” Kit Carson, Dan and Roque save an ungrateful New Mexico governor from certain death. Only one man ever called Kit a coward. This is how it may have happened.
In “Can We Still Collect the Bounty?” Dan and Roque face off against badman Clay Allison. Who was tougher? Read the story to find out.
“Marshal of Arizona” explores what happens when the government refuses to provide law enforcement and forbids local government from providing it. The marshal has no authority except his reputation and his gun and that can get you into trouble. This was the situation in Tubac in 1860.
Wind Wagon Thomas is known to have built a great wagon driven by sails. He ventured out upon the Sea of Grass that was the Santa Fe Trail and made it 40 miles before he capsized. But he tried again in “Pirates of the Llano Estacado” and made it all the way to New Mexico.
A soldier at Cantonment Burgwin near Taos wrote a letter to a friend expressing his dissatisfaction with the conduct of the Battle at Cieneguilla where half of a command of dragoons died and the other half was wounded and without ammunition. Was this the Jicarilla Apache Bannockburn or more of a Custer’s Last Stand? This forgotten battle took place in 1854.
In 1861, seven Union sympathizers fled the Confederate invasion of New Mexico in a stolen stagecoach and headed for California. Learn of their journey and encounters with Apaches in “Escape from Mesilla.”
Peregrino Rojo was a versatile Jicarilla Apache, a man of parts, able to speak Spanish and English and to pass himself off as a Mexican don. In “The Power of Fox and Snake” he rides the Mississippi as a gambler using his native Apache Power to assist his gambling. How would an Apache, for whom gambling was an almost sacred exercise of Power, respond to riverboat cheats? He takes on one of the most famous in a story different understandings of morals clash.
In 1849, Ann White’s daughter was taken captive by Jicarilla Apache and disappeared for many years. Passed from tribe to tribe she ended up as a slave among the Mojave of the Colorado River. Freed, she had much to learn about being a lady and found Doña Tules, famed courtesan and gambling lady of Santa Fe and a very Victorian officer’s lady to assist her in learning the new rules.
“Penitent Child” involves Dan and Roque in a Christmas story and a conflict with Penitentes.
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