Have you tried watching those old western movies, only to find a group of cowboys playing a game of poker before getting into a bar fight? Well, to make it more interesting, people actually took gambling seriously back then, no matter how illegal it might have been.
In fact, gambling back then was a big deal, especially in the 19th century. Believe it or not, some of the first structures built in the old west were gambling halls. It was a favorite pastime, so if you were hanging out at the saloon, the first thing you’d expect to see are girls, bar fights, drinking, and poker games!
Rufus Buck Gang
This photo of rugged young-looking dudes was known as the Rufus Buck Gang. Originally formed by a guy named Rufus Buck, this multi-racial gang of outlaws robbed ranches and stores in the late 1890s in the Arkansas-Oklahoma area.
They were eventually captured outside Muskogee, OK, and received a death sentence for killing several men, including a US Marshall named John Garrett.
Maggie: A Girl of the Streets
A novella written by Stephen Crane called “Maggie: A Girl of the Streets” The plot had centered around a young girl from Bowery, whose life had taken an unfortunate turn because she was seduced by a friend of her brother’s, which eventually ended her life tragically.
The story was considered risque at the time because it was followed by a second novel called “George’s Mother” written by the same author.
The Louisiana Purchase
The timeline of the Wild West (sometimes referred to as the Old West) generally begins around the time of the Louisiana Purchase (in 1803). The Wild West in American history is often characterized by the western expansion of settlers to develop land west of the Mississippi River. But even though the expansion officially stopped, it doesn’t mean the West was truly settled by then.
In this photo, we see a photo of the perfect cowboy vs. Indian image. It’s a great photo, too, because it is exactly what we would imagine the old west to be, the same as in the movies. The expansion of the west certainly did not come without its consequences. In fact, you didn't need to search too far to find out about trouble on the frontier. When it wasn’t warring groups shooting at one another, it was frontiersmen and women who faced long odds to survive the journey. The Old West was definitely a tough time for many people.
Annie Oakley, a Pure Talent
Another photo of Annie Oakley is on this list. Annie Oakley was known for her incredible sharpshooting talents as part of Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show.
If you are not aware of the Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show, as we previously mentioned, it was one of the most famous traveling shows back in the old west. Oakley, seen here in an image from 1899, was born on August 13, 1860, and died on November 3, 1926. In this photo, you can even see how serious she is with her shooting, and it would probably be a good idea not to piss her off.