1) Back in the 1800s, pioneer towns really did stink. Rubbish was left out to rot along with the corpses of animals and offal from the butcher shops.
2) The western myth of brave cattle ranchers defending their territory in the far west is only…a myth. The real fight was between big powerful ranchers who formed stock growers associations and used violence and terror to drive out small farmers.”
3) Western men thought their role was to dominate women, and domestic violence was widespread. Most wives stuck it out, believing their married status and a promised place in God’s heaven were worth beatings.
4) Divorce was easily available. Women could get one on grounds of alcoholism, abandonment, or extreme violence; men could divorce women who refused to wash clothes, cook, or have children.
5) Saloon dance ladies weren’t prostitutes, even though they were often dubbed soiled doves, nymphs of the prairie, scarlet ladies, or fallen angels. They earned money by selling dances, encouraging men to drink and gamble.
If only the walls could speak…
In one hundred and fifty years, Blake's Folly, a silver boomtown notorious for its brothels, scarlet ladies, silver barons, speakeasies, and divorce ranches, has become a semi-ghost town. Although the old Mizpah Saloon is still in business, its upper floor is sheathed in dust. But in a room at a long corridor's end, an adventurer, a beautiful dance girl, and a rejected wife were once caught in a love triangle, and their secret has touched three generations.
Writer, photographer, social critical artist, and impenitent teller of tall tales, J. Arlene Culiner, was born in New York and raised in Toronto. She has crossed much of Europe on foot, has lived in a mud house on the Great Hungarian Plain, a Bavarian castle, a Turkish cave dwelling, a haunted house on the English moors, and on a Dutch canal. She now resides in a 400-year-old former inn in a French village of no interest where, much to local dismay, she protects spiders, snakes, and all weeds. She particularly enjoys incorporating into mysteries, non-fiction, and romances, her experiences in out-of-the-way communities, and her conversations with very odd characters.
See the profile of J. Arlene Culiner on the Overblog portal