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Daniel Buck
Re: re; Roger Pocock etc.
Wed Mar 7, 2018 2:30pm

I'm not sure there is much disagreement between us -- especially because we are both skeptical & attentive (you even more than I on the latter score) readers. That said, three thoughts. His book was greeted with incredulity verging on derision by some critics when it came out in 1903. Libraries even classified it as fiction.

Second, I would not emphasize too much Lloyd's Weekly as an elite periodical, or that somehow the elites knoew what he was up to, but the hoi polloi did not. England by 1900 had a literacy rate in the 90s, and Lloyds sold a million copies a week in a country of 30 million. In the US today that would be an unthinkable 33 million copies. Lloyds was much read and affordable by anyone who had two pence.

Finally, and perhaps most importantly, Pocock today is as famous if not more famous for his supposed penetration of Robbers Roost and canasta games with Cassidy and McCarty as he is for his long ride. His modern biographer, Geoffrey Pocock (no apparent relation), not a rube by any means, tumbled for the Robbers Roost story like Buster Keaton in a one-reeler. And Long Riders Guild major domo Cuchilliane O'Riley requests saber at dawn from anyone who has the temerity to question Roger Pocock's veracity on the Robbers Roost escapade. I am one of those temeritous souls, though lacking a saber, I passed on the at dawn encounter. Dan

  • re; Roger Pocock etc.Bob Goodwin, Wed Mar 7 12:40pm
    Dan, The bigger question is how much can Roger Pocock be trusted. Yes, he exaggerated, but he does not seem to invent his stories. They are based on core facts, not inventions. He also editorializes. ... more
    • Re: re; Roger Pocock etc. — Daniel Buck, Wed Mar 7 2:30pm
    • PocokBob Goodwin, Wed Mar 7 12:44pm
      The bottom line is that I think he can be trusted, in general, you just have to know when he is trying to pull your Calavaras County leg.
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