This was not like the Beatles crossing Abbey Road.
This is a great conversation. I think it is important. You have just done what few do, by making individuals of these ranchers. I found while researching Billy Allen that he never called them by a derogatory group name, such as the "Cowboys". I have since tried to do the same. In doing so, it helps to see when they, as individuals, take a different route in whatever they did in this story.
I do not believe that the McLaurys and the Clantons were connected at the hip. The McLaurys' business dealings were probably no business of the Clantons and vise versa. The younger men probably kept to themselves while their elders dealt with business. So, for Billy Clanton and Billy Claiborne to take an easier and shorter route to their rendezvous seems very possible and very probable to me. Frank McLaury did not need the Billys standing around listening to his business conversations.
The maps made up by hand of Tombstone were done so with the use of articles, directories, advertisements and the Sanborn maps of 1882 and after. We don't know what fencing and walls were put up in the stock and livery yards in 1881. And you can find the Le Van House on most of those 1881 maps, but it opened it Mar 1882.
This was not Abbey Road. In this I mean that the McLaurys, Clantons and Claiborn were not crossing the street in a nice tidy lineup like the Beatles. I don't think Tom was with this group of people crossing Allen Street. I think the possibility that Gary provides might be just what happened.
Billy Allen was not paying attention to the McLaurys, Clantons and Claiborn like Sills and Coleman were. He looked down the street and noticed the stock raisers, but did not concentrate on them. He was not part of the "Chicken Little" crowd. By the time he testified, he knew who had been in the vacant lot and I believe his testimony includes his knowledge, not what he really saw. I think he saw them all later in the lot and assumed they were all accounted for as they crossed Allen Street earlier.
Billy Allen "thought" he had seen Tom McLaury among the ranchers crossing Allen Street. From his testimony we can tell that he did not see Bill Clanton, but named him just the same. I think the men crossing Allen Street were not stretched out and easy to identify, especially if you weren't paying good attention. "I think Frank was leading a horse, or Billy Clanton, one of the two was leading a horse.", said Allen. Billy C. was on horseback, so was it Claiborn that Allen saw walking close to Frank? Billy Claiborne probably passed Frank as Billy Clanton, sitting atop his horse, passed Frank just before Billy talked to Coleman and that was who he saw.
Maybe you can help me out here as I can't find where Billy Claiborne mentioned Tom McLaury on Allen Street. The same goes for one of Coleman's testimonies (Turner). Coleman said there were two Clantons and two McLaurys (not mentioning Claiborne). He mentions Billy Clanton on horseback and Frank pulling his horse and Ike fetching up the rear. Why didn't Coleman mention Tom?
Claiborne said that he and Billy had a 15 minute conversation going on before Behan walked away from them. This, to me, sounds like Billy Clanton and Billy Claiborne arrived at the lot before the rest of their group and Behan.
I am a firm believer that there were two horses in the vicinity, but only one horse at the small gunfight area. I guess I am one of the few to believe this, but, oh well. There is no way, so far, of knowing where Billy Clanton may have tied his horse up... if I am correct.
The timing in these testimonies is very interesting.
Tom, This will have to be brief. For one thing, I have to be somewhere shortly, and for another, I don't have time to review the testimony the way I need to in order to give you the kind of answer... more
Robin "So, for Billy Clanton and Billy Claiborne to take an easier and shorter route to their rendezvous seems very possible and very probable to me." I have asked everyone I can think of to show... more
Hi Tom, What evidence is there that the two Billy's came out at the Fremont Street O.K. Corral exit? Who saw them there? Who testified to that? Billy Allen and Reuben Coleman, in a sense, followed... more
Robin However I note it is a position held by few for which no actual evidence is presented that I have been able to find from those who advocate for it Almost every person who has written about this ... more
Nick, I can't know for sure, because we can only speculate about what might have happened if Sheriff Behan hadn't shown up. My general belief has been that Billy was anxious to leave and that the... more
Since it appears from photographs that there were no hitching rails on the street, it was a misdemeanor to tie your horse to a tree, and I get the impression that people were encouraged to take their ... more
Gary, This morning I reviewed Billy Claiborne's testimony before the Coroner's Inquest and at the Spicer Hearing to see if there was anything I had previously overlooked that might clarify the route... more
Jerry, My guess is that Coroner Matthews initiated preliminary interviews with potential witnesses in order to determine which witnesses should later be called at the Coroner's Inquest. Exactly how... more
Matthews talked to the people that were on the scene that day, and based on those initial conversations put together a witness list for the inquest. The most curious thing about the coroner's inquest ... more
Gary, Two possibilities arise as to why the police involved in the shooting were not called to testify in the Coroner's inquest: 1.) Behan successfully managed to manipulate Matthews in the selection ... more
Jeff, Is it realistic to think that the Earps were already conferring with Fitch within a couple of hours of the street fight? I don't know, maybe they were, but I have never seen anything on it.... more
Gary I understood there was no information on how the cowboys proceeded once in the OK Corral but Coleman gave a clue. As you know Sills is the only one who testified to seeing the cowboys standing... more