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book cover of Suppressed Murder of Wyatt Earp

Suppressed Murder of Wyatt Earp

A novel by

This book, originally published by the Naylor Company in 1967 was a watershed publication that astounded Western Buffs with the revelation that "not all that was known about Wyatt Earp was already between book covers or had been published in magazine articles." (In succeeding years, further extensive publications by its author have revealed that the opposite was more nearly true.) In any case, this erroneous conviction was so firmly impressed in the public mind that editors at first refused to credit this book's authenticity, particularly since it was allegedly based largely on formerly "closely held" family revelations. Worse yet, family members were cited of whom the public had never heard and were introduced with detailed information of whom they were. For example relatives of Wyatt's Secret Second Wife, Celia Ann "Mattie" Blaylock. Not even Mattie was more than tentatively established as a real person, so relatives were a little much to toss into the confusing picture. The author had to overcome many misconceptions to find a publisher, which he finally did by submitting item after item of irrefutable documentation in the originals, most of which are cited in the book.

In addition many photos of Earps appeared for the first time, including those of Wyatt's parents, grandparents, secret second wife, his sister's family, many still living at that time, and some of the author's informants whom the public was astonished to learn had known both Wyatt and his last wife very well indeed and were, moreover, still very much alive. This points up one aspect of overcoming skepticism of editors who all seemed to think the Earp Saga was as ancient as Washington crossing the Delaware - how could there be living witnesses to such "ancient" events? Well, they weren't that ancient.

Such a book naturally arrived like a bombshell in the Western History field. Critics rushed in, even attacking it's allegorical title, obviously without having read the book, since they failed to perceive that its title didn't imply that the man Wyatt Earp had literally been murdered, but that he'd been figuratively "killed off" by writers and replaced by a glowing myth, whom the author dubbed "Super Marshal" or "St. Wyatt the Just."

This publication also in due time revived interest in a Wyatt Earp legend that was being sent down the tube by specious debunking. It polished the tarnished Wyatt Earp image so that his restored fame revived the town of Tombstone, Arizona. The big draw there today as a result is, of course, Wyatt, his brothers, Doc Holliday, and the misnamed Gunfight at the OK Corral.

Moreover, advance knowledge of this forthcoming book reversed the original intent of Hollywood to portray Wyatt as a psychopathic klller in the forthcoming HOUR OF THE GUN, since the author met the Director in Tombstone and learned what he intended. Hollywood was dissuaded from more debunking by the author's informing them that Wyatt had living close relatives who might land on them like a ton of bricks if they distorted the image of their beloved "Uncle Wyatt." Interestingly a new Director showed up in the credits.

Even the author's severest critic held this book up at a meeting of Western historians and said every Earp Buff should read it. Very true! Also the public at large should read it and learn not to be too smug and placid in making assumptions about possessing ultimate knowledge. It is not unreasonable to suppose it should be used in college history courses, even if the Earp imbroglio is not considered academically respectable, since, respectable or not, Wyatt's strange apotheosis demonstrates the universal historical process of "Myth Making." The tracks of the myth makers in Wyatt's case were still clear to read when author Boyer came on the scene.


Used availability for G G Boyer's Suppressed Murder of Wyatt Earp

Hardback Editions

January 1997 : USA Library Binding

Title: Suppressed Murder of Wyatt Earp
Author(s): Glenn G Boyer
ISBN: 1-890670-07-3 / 978-1-890670-07-8 (USA edition)
Publisher: Historical Research Associates, Incorporated
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA