"Texas, by God"
and the
Deger the puritan
Wed Aug 8, 2018 09:21

I think it was not loyalty to any one person as much as being about principle. And I must qualify such principle from the eyes of a pro gambler. Anything goes in regards making a buck from the saloon business. Having girls does the trick. As you know Mayor Webster's saloon had no prostitutes on premises, whereas Short and Harris had three of them working inside the Long Branch. That was the backdrop for the whole trouble and the famous photo.

The sex element was killing business for Webster, who was entwined with Deger. No girls also appealed to Deger's puritanical side, if you will, for my lack of a better vocabulary.
I also have to look at this from the 1877 perspective, when bunko had a foothold in Dodge. For that to happen means one thing, that graft was going to as many officers who would possibly take it. I couldn't find one account existing for Bat, Wyatt, Bassett, Ed Masterson, Joe Mason or any other officer lifting a finger against bunko. Only Deger took it upon himself to oppose them in violent manner and run them out, which would only be temporary. '77 was such a hot summer for poor Larry - with nobody backing him against the con-men - that he had a drastic weight drop from 306 to 280 lbs.

Just take a look at what still weighs on Larry's mind six years later as he is about to become Mayor.


This reflects on how Deger always despised the crooked gamblers in his midst at Dodge from the early years, when he hated their mascot 'Bobby Gill' (Robert Gilmore) and when he beat up and arrested Bat who tried to interfere with an arrest made on Bobby Gill.

Principle vs. principle - that's my take.

  • Thank you, Kenny. Bob Cash, Wed Aug 8 00:34
    This info certainly connects Luke with Dodge City veterans. Still, given the fairly short amount of time spent in these locations, it is somewhat surprising that Wyatt, Bat, Charlie Bassett and... more
    • Deger the puritan — K.t.K., Wed Aug 8 09:21
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