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Gunfighters were a unique Western frontier product and a breed of their own—neither outlaw nor lawman but often either or both during their lifetime.
This photo of Billy Brooks depicts a typical gunfighter of the 1870s, and he fit the mold: he was a lawman in Newton and Ellsworth,
Kansas, a gunfighter in Dodge City—before any of those towns became
“cowtowns”—and he died at the end of a rope in 1874 as a horse thief.
This photo was probably taken circa 1872.

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