Bob Cash
Re: Hi Bob/ no argument there, but...
Tue Aug 02, 14:39

Joyce, you state: "...my concern was that the DA , Price, sloughed it off so casually. His references to witnesses that were not named bother me. Even though we now understand that testimony or reference information by men like Frank Vaughn and even Bob Paul may have been recorded much later, still they were men of some character and so why has their input more or less been ignored?...Price claimed at the time he questioned witnesses and found no reason for the slightest suspicion. Does that not strike you as an irresponsible statement; should not we wonder why, if he actually questioned the witnesses which could only be the men we believe to have been out there, then how could he reject their comments as of no reason for any suspicion at all? Circumstantial evidence actually has value in court today as yesterday."

What I am saying, Joyce, is that there is no contemporary record of who the people were who showed up as witnesses. Just because forty years later somebody said they saw something to do with the attempted robbery and double murder doesn't mean they showed up for the trial. Testifying to something that accused both the Earp faction (especially Doc Holliday) and some of the Cowboys of committing a hanging offense might have been seen by a witness as a little chancy. Forty and fifty years later, in matters dealing with Tombstone, there were witnesses who may have truthfully tried to remember what they saw and got some things wrong, witnesses whose minds were sharp and probably related exactly what they saw, and then there were "witnesses" who saw everything that ever happened in Cochise County, but whose accounts bear little resemblance to the facts as we know them (even you and I agree on a few facts). Ben Goodrich, John Pleasant Gray, and the Carmichael quoted by Frank Waters, all claimed to have been eyewitnesses to the street fight that they all said took place at the O.K. Corral gate on Fremont Street. They all may have had different motives for their misrepresentation.

I think there is a fourth category. In certain cases, I believe that were partisans on both sides of the Earp/Cowboy dispute who sincerely wanted to set the record straight as to what happened and to do so on behalf of History or to defend the legacy of a departed or still living friend, or to prove the Democrats or the Republicans were the good guys or bad guys. Being absolutely certain that they knew the Truth and having seen it trampled on in so many articles and books about Tombstone, what better way to defend the Truth than to state exactly what they Knew happened and add the little white lie that they personally saw it happen, just to make the Truth more believable?

What is your source for Slaughter recognizing Doc on the Dunbar horse? The story about Ike is attributed to Mrs. Slaughter. I don't believe there is any manuscript by her or interview where she is quoted directly. The account in Eugene Cunningham's TRIGGERNOMETRY says that Slaughter assumed Clanton was thinking about robbing him of money from a cattle sale. Cunningham was no Earp-heroizer by any means and got most of his information about Tombstone from his close friend, Behan's former deputy Billy Breakenridge. According to Cunningham, "Breakenridge confessed that he never discovered any evidence to clear or convict Holliday." That being the case, after being on the ground in Tombstone in 1881 and living in SE Arizona for more than 50 years, he basically had the same conclusion as DA Price, not enough evidence to convict.

  • Hi Bob/ no argument there, but...Joyce A. Aros, Mon Aug 01 19:43
    ...my concern was that the DA , Price, sloughed it off so casually. His references to witnesses that were not named bother me. Even though we now understand that testimony or reference information by men... more
    • Re: Hi Bob/ no argument there, but... — Bob Cash, Tue Aug 02 14:39
      • Bob, refer to my 'clear up my garble' postt...Joyce A. Aros, Tue Aug 02 17:28
        ...and maybe I will make more sense. There seem to be several differing accounts of Slaughter's recognizing Holliday and I have not heard anything anywhere about Ike Clanton following him to rob... more
        • Where did Vaughn's accounts appear and when?
          • Bob/ Vaughn's accounts.....Joyce A. Aros, Wed Aug 03 8:57
            ...Frank Vaughn is an interesting man, apparently. His record as an Arizona pioneer at a time when everyday life became an opportunity for greater things for almost everyone who wanted to progress is a... more
            • Re: Bob/ Vaughn's accounts.....Bob Cash, Fri Aug 05 12:33
              I find nothing in my research of Frank Vaughn to suggest he was anything but an upstanding citizen. However, as I pointed out in a previous post, many "eyewitnesses" of Tombstone events apparently related... more
              • Not only Vaughn...Joyce A. Aros, Sat Aug 06 4:30
                Integrity is crucial in an investigation, as you say, but my concern from the beginning is why did the DA write it all off with a flip "...not even a suspicion..." It appears that even with substantial... more
    • Bob/ just to clear up my garble...Joyce A. Aros, Tue Aug 02 7:08
      ...We are talking about the District Attorney questioning witnesses on or about July 9, 1881, not 40 years later. His conclusion, after interviewing men such as Frank Vaughn and John Slaughter, that "...there... more