Culture & Criticism Since 2003
The story of James Butler “Wild Bill” Hickok has been told in various fictional forms throughout the years in Western dramas like “Gunsmoke.” Hickok’s story has been told and retold so many times because it is both compelling and cinematic – a product of the most romanticized period in American history. In Tom Clavin’s Wild Bill, we get the real slant on the life and times of of the frontier’s first gunfighter. The legend of Hickok came to be in a slim instant when he shot dead Davis Tutt in Springfield, Missouri in 1865. That’s when the legend of “Wild Bill” began, however, his story is about much more than some random gun tough. It’s about the way men lived in the lawless west when it seemed everyone had to be ready to draw just to survive one more day. Tom Clavin’s writing makes this book truly special, as he moves his in-depth knowledge of American history along via a swift narrative that captures the story behind the scenes. Read by Johnny Heller. Running time: 9 hours on 7 CDS. Sample the narration here.