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Wyatt Earp and The Gunfight at The OK Corral
Wyatt Earp was born on 19th March, 1848 in Montmouth, Illinois and spent the early part of his life drifting in and out of various law enforcement jobs and moving between Iowa, San Bernardino in California, Lamar in Missouri and Kansas. He slao spent time working in jobs such as stagecoach driver, buffalo hunter and hauling freight. Wyatt's younger brothers Morgan and Warren and sisters Virginia Ann and Adelia were born between 1851 and 1861.
After moving on to Dodge City in 1876 and spending some time working in law enforcement, he was appointed assistant city marshal in 1878. It was in Dodge City where he met his long-term friends Bat Masterson and Doc Holiday - who was a former dentist and now turned professional gambler. After a short while, Wyatt Earp moved on to the booming silver mining frontier town of Tombstone, Arizona where his bothers Virgil Earp, Morgan Earp and James Earp were living. Virgil Earp soon became Tombstone's city marshal, and Wyatt Earp and James Earp became deputies.
In Tombstone Wyatt managed to secure the gambling concession at the Oriental Saloon which brought him into conflict with the the Clanton family and the McLaury family. After several squabbles and disagreements over gambling and behaviour Wyatt believed he had good reason to suspect them of stealing cattle from Mexico. This eventually resulted in the 1881 gunfight at the OK Corral where he gained notoriety as the legendary gunman in the shootout.
In March 1881 Wyatt Earp joined a posse chasing some cowboys who had robbed a stagecoach from Tombstone and killed its driver. Not being able to catch them all, Wyatt sought help from Ike Clanton who he believed knew the cowboys who were still at large. Wyatt offered Ike a substantial amount of money in return for information but Ike started drinking heavily and became increasingly nervous about possible reprisals if he helped with the capture. Fianally, Ike Clanton's drunken behaviour and the threats he made against the Earps for trying to involve him in the capture proved too much for the Earps.
In October Wyatt Earp and his brothers Morgan and Virgil, and Doc Holliday met with Ike Clanton, Billy Clanton, Frank McLaury, and Tom McLaury for a showdown in a small yard at the back of the OK Corral. The infamous gunfight resulted in Frank McLaury, Tom McLaury and Billy Clanton being killed, and Ike Clanton running away. Virgil Earp, Morgan Earp and Doc Holiday were wounded but survived, and Wyatt Earp was completely unharmed. Wyatt Earp eventually died on 13th January, 1929 in Los Angeles.