The Birth of Tombstone’s Helldorado Celebration

tombstone helldorado days true west

Tombstone’s first Helldorado celebration was in October 1929—and like so many other things tied to the “Town Too Tough To Die,” there was some controversy.

Old time figures John Clum, Billy Breckenridge and Anton Mazzanovich were tabbed to lead the parade. Clum biographer Gary Ledoux says Mazzanovich “politicked” his way into the honor, and that Clum and others viewed the writer as a publicity-seeking “buffoon” who was more talk than substance. Bad feelings already existed between Clum and Breckenridge over the latter’s 1928 anti-Earp book Helldorado.

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